Recap: Veterans Day Light Giveaway Ride

What do you get when you mix a sunny holiday, a cargo bike, and a couple hundred lights to give away?  At WABA, you get an 8-ward ride handing out lights to cyclists who don’t have them.

Yesterday, I decided to take advantage of the holiday and just ride around the city installing lights for cyclists who didn’t have them.  To make it a bit more fun, I set a goal of installing a light in every ward.  It turned out to be less challenging and more fun than I had expected.

I left from the WABA office, headed north, then generally worked my way around the city in a counter-clockwise loop.

Highlights:

  • Group of kids at King Greenleaf Rec Center who saw me give lights to one person, then ran to get everyone in the neighborhood who rode a bike at night without lights.  They drew a decent crowd.
  • James, the veteran who bikes to and from work daily because he says the Metro costs too much and the bus is too slow.  He was riding his backup bike that didn’t have any lights because he needs a new rear derailleur for his main bike.
  • Reggie, the handyman who’s expecting a slowdown in work this winter and is interested in helping WABA to install bike racks during his downtime.
  • Keisha & Nelson, on their way to the zoo on the nice day.  Nelson’s bike has a Hot Wheels machine that makes engine noises as he goes.  Now he has front and rear lights as well.
  • Al, who lives near Benning & Minnesota but works in a restaurant in Adams Morgan and bike commutes daily.
  • Lowlight: The young mother with a toddler in a stroller outside the Anacostia Metro who had read about recent incidents where strollers were struck by cars asking if she could have a light for her stroller.

Thanks again to BicycleSPACE for providing the Kona Ute to carry everything around and to DDOT and District Hardware/The Bike Shop for the lights.