You may have received this email, from WABA Executive Director Shane Farthing, this morning. It announces our 2013 award winners and reviews the things we’ve achieved over the past year, all of which we’ll celebrate at Friday’s BikeFest. We’re running Shane’s email this afternoon on the blog in case you missed the email, want a recap of what WABA’s been working on, or need another reminder of why attending BikeFest will be a great way to spend your Friday night.
As we approach another bike month in the Washington area, will you join us to celebrate? Our annual fundraiser and party, BikeFest, is this Friday. I hope to see you there.
This time last year, there was no L Street cycletrack, seemingly no path forward on the Metropolitan Branch Trail in Silver Spring, and the Wilson Bridge trail access was blocked by jet-black bollards. In just 12 months, we’ve changed all these things.
The L Street cycletrack is here, and its westbound match on M Street is coming. We’ve broken the impasse on the MBT and should soon see designs for a trail crossing at Georgia Avenue. The jet-black bollards—well, they’re still there, but they aren’t jet black anymore.
Additionally, we’re about to see the launch of bikesharing in Montgomery County. In Maryland, we fought back a mandatory helmet law that would have done more harm than good. In the District, we helped to pass the Access to Justice for Bicyclists Act, which increases civil rights for assaulted cyclists. We’ve welcomed Black Women Bike DC under the WABA umbrella. We’ve launched the Women & Bicycles program, a hugely successful endeavor to address the gender gap in cycling; continued our East of the River outreach program in wards 7 and 8; and added full-time outreach and advocacy coordinators for the first time in our history.
That’s an incredible amount to celebrate, but we’re not slowing down. We work daily—and nightly—to grow and improve biking in the D.C. region. Our Adult Learn to Ride classes were on the front page of the Washington Post’s local section this past Sunday. The day before, we taught families bike safety skills at Kidical Mass’ ABCs of Family Biking clinic; meanwhile, our outreach team was busy at events in D.C., McLean, and Bethesda. The week prior, we hosted an Advocacy 101 training and were present at nearly a dozen regional meetings to emphasize the need for better bicycling in every regional jurisdiction.
Biking is booming, and WABA is working behind the scenes to make it happen. But we aren’t doing so alone. Many incredible individuals support our efforts, and I hope you’ll help us honor some of them at BikeFest.
- 2013 Advocacy Award: Veronica Davis, co-founder of Black Women Bike DC
- 2013 Advocacy Award: Evan Wilder, leader in the push for D.C.’s Access to Justice for Bicyclists Act
- 2013 Pierre Summerville Education Award: Jeff Anderson, youth bicycling advocate
- 2013 Volunteer Appreciation Award: Susan & Iolaire McFadden, dedicated WABA volunteers in too many capacities to list
We’re incredibly grateful for the support of people like these. Will you join us at BikeFest to show appreciation for their hard work, celebrate the continued growth and improvement of bicycling in the region, and raise funds to make sure WABA’s progress continues?
I’ll see you Friday.
BikeFest is this Friday, May 3 from 8 p.m. to midnight at Eastern Market’s North Hall. Tickets are on sale here ($45 for members and $55 for nonmembers). BikeFest will sell out and tickets will not be sold at the door, so purchase yours today!
BikeFest is generously supported by