What’s your #BEaPAL resolution?

The Arlington PAL Ambassador program is looking forward to making Arlington a safer place to get around for all in 2018!

That’s why, in January, we’ll be asking the community to share their New Year’s resolutions on how they will be a better PAL (Predictable, Alert, and Lawful road user) while walking, biking or driving in Arlington.  

Keep an eye out for more information and outreach event updates in the new year, and if you’d like to participate online, share your resolutions with us:

 

    • On Twitter, you can find us @arlingtonpal or just tweet with the hashtag #BEaPAL

 

    • On Instagram or post a picture of how you get around Arlington, and don’t forget to tag it with #BEaPAL.

 

  • Or you can post your resolution on our forum.

And now, here’s a year in review of the amazing work the Arlington PAL Ambassadors did this past year. Enjoy!

A rainy yet spectacular Clarendon Mardi Gras Parade!

The time we made some videos for Annmarie’s PALentines Day!

 

 

Lots of what we call “trailer-ing” with the PAL bike sign.

My first event as the PAL Coordinator (cry emoji) for Earth Day!

ALL the pizza parties…

Predictable, Alert, Lawful: The Musical!

PAL Popsicle Pop-up, in the heat of summer.

Being a PAL means….

A spooky, safety PALoween on Quincy Street!

Daylight Savings bike light distribution to restaurant employees!

Advocacy with art.

A cold, cold, (but super fun) coffee pop-up!


And finally….the PALiversary party!

Thank you to all of our supporters and volunteers for a wonderful 2017. Join us next year in changing road culture in Arlington!

 


Tips for Being a PAL this Halloween

Happy PAL-oween from your friendly neighborhood Arlington PAL (Predictable, Alert, Lawful) Ambassadors! On October 31st, we’ll be out on N. Jackson Street near Virginia Square among trick-or-treaters to help everyone have fun and walk, bike, or drive safely during their night of spooky fun.

Join us, won’t you?

And keep reading for some tips that you can share for anyone going out on Halloween:

Drive and bike SLOWLY through your neighborhood and be extra aware of pedestrians.

Kids can be unpredictable humans, especially when they’re surrounded by the excitement of tricks and treats. There will be many more people of all ages walking around on Halloween than your typical weekday evening, so be sure to take extra care. Worst thing that can happen is that you’re delayed by an adorable parade of minions and goblins crossing the street. If you’re on your bike, make sure to let people walking and trick or treating know you’re around by calling your passes, ringing a bell or wishing them a Happy Halloween!

Walkers and bikers: lighten up!

Ashley and Annmarie sporting their #BEaPAL reflective vests during the Mardi Gras parade

While the onus is on drivers to take care around more vulnerable road users, like people walking, biking and trick or treating, there are things you can do to improve your visibility at night. Reflective accents can be added to costumes to help you be seen. Carrying glow sticks or flashlights can be helpful as they not only help others see you, but help you see in the dark as well.

For bicyclists, Arlington County requires that bicycles ridden at night have one white light at the front and a red reflector at the rear. A blinking red rear light and bonus reflective goodies, like vests or small stickers, can be even more helpful.

Luckily, the PAL Ambassadors will be there handing out bike lights, reflective vests and fun goodies that night to help keep your Halloween lit!

 

 

 

Everyone: be lawful at intersections

This goes for everyone! When walkers wait for the crosswalk signal, bikers stop at the stop sign or light and drivers always yield to pedestrians, we all get to the most important part of the night with less stress: Getting home to devour all of the candy!

Arlington’s PAL Ambassadors put on a show for Bike Month

Sometimes asking people to be more predictable, alert, and lawful (or to be a PAL) for safer streets requires you to stand out and make a lot of noise to get their attention, especially if they’re whizzing by in a car or on a bike.  For the Arlington PAL Ambassador May block party, we decided to go all out with a broadway-inspired theme to make our voices heard!

“Predictable, Alert, Lawful – The Musical!” was the name of our crosswalk show, which took place at a busy and confusing intersection in the Clarendon neighborhood.  It first started off with three of us – myself along with volunteers Autumn and Rheal – singing our own rendition of “Let it Go” while performing some light choreography in front of cars waiting for the light to turn green.  Were they confused? Probably. Did they enjoy it? Probably!

When volunteers Leeann, Greg and Naomi arrived, we then began dancing across the crosswalk to funky tunes and thanking our fellow pedestrians and considerate drivers for being PALs. One walker even told us about the time that he was almost hit by a car at that very intersection.  Vehicles turning right often fail to yield to pedestrians crossing the crosswalk near the O’Sullivan’s Irish Pub.

Our crosswalk musical was a hit with the Arlingtonians that interacted with us, and we had a blast ourselves!  While we’ll never know if people became more predictable, alert, and lawful that day, we know one thing for certain – they’ll almost always remember the PAL Ambassadors every time they approach that crosswalk!

Want to become an Arlington PAL Ambassador?  Sign up

Meet a PAL Ambassador: Crash

All of the PAL Ambassadors call you Crash…what kind of name is that?!

I once T-boned a police car on my bicycle in the rain. No one was seriously injured.

That’s…not really an answer. What are your favorite things about Arlington? What do you like to do?

I’ve lived here for about six years and it’s a vibrant community with so much diversity and things going on. As small as it is, each corner has a different feel and culture to it. Ballston, Crystal City, West Columbia Pike, Rosslyn. What makes Arlington really unique though is the “Arlington loop”. The 17-mile interconnected connected trail system for walking, bicycling, rollerblading, stroller-pushing, etc, whatever you want to use it for. I don’t imagine many other areas have such a well used and well maintained trail system.  There are also lots of outdoor events, but one of my favorites is the free outdoor movies. Lots of people come out to them.

The Predictable, Alert and Lawful (PAL) message is aimed at everyone in the community: bicyclists, pedestrians and drivers.  Which do you see yourself as?

I’m definitely all three. I own a car but I commute to and from work by bicycle. Being in all three roles definitely makes you better at all three. When I’m driving, pedestrians will illegally cross in the crosswalk when I’m going through the intersection! What are they thinking? When I’m bicycling, cars will change lanes or turn without using their turn signal! What are they thinking? When I’m walking, bicycles will pass me with little room to spare without notifying me with an audible signal! What are they thinking? Using each mode makes me understand what I can do better in the others.

Describe your involvement as a PAL Ambassador and what you enjoy about volunteering.

Not going to lie, I saw something in a bicycle newsletter about a pizza party and I can’t turn down food. That was many years ago and now the advocacy is more interesting than the pizza to me. Being a PAL Ambassador is pretty simple, the most important thing is to practice the PAL principles. The aspect I like the most is seeing people from the community being brought together. Volunteering at a big event like Bike To Work Day is amazing because you see how massive the bicycle community is. Volunteering at smaller events like our block parties is amazing because you get to meet families with young children who genuinely enjoy spending wholesome, quality time together outside.

Why do you think the PAL program is important and relevant to the Arlington community?

Arlington is a perfect intersection of cars, bicycles, and pedestrians. Commuters going into DC by car go through Arlington. Arlington is dense enough that Arlingtonians can easily walk to restaurants and bars. We have fantastic bicycle infrastructure and services so that most of us can either bicycle the complete distance to where we want to go or use it for some of our journey. These three modes of transportation aren’t separate; cars share the lane with bicycles, bicycles may need to share the sidewalk with pedestrians, and pedestrians cross streets used by cars and bikes. Where there’s a feeling of disconnect between the modes is where problems can happen, and the PAL Ambassadors are out there to remind people to put more thought into their behavior.

You can meet Crash and more PAL Ambassadors at our Block Party this Saturday!

Meet Ashley, the new Arlington PAL Ambassador Coordinator!

Ashley Blue

Hello PALs! I’m so excited to be the new PAL Ambassador program coordinator. Spring is in the air and as we all know, Arlingtonians will be out and about. Let’s go remind them to be Predictable, Alert and Lawful!

While I’ve been biking since I was a kid, I really embraced it as a new way to explore in Alexandria. Biking made me feel so much more connected to the world around me than I had before. I started biking everywhere – the grocery store, friend’s places…I couldn’t get enough!

The most enriching part of my newfound love was becoming a part of such a fun, supportive community of cyclists. As I started attending Women & Bicycles events and local community rides, I really found a sense of belonging in my new city.

I then moved to Arlington where I began getting involved with BikeArlington as a volunteer and regular community ride participant. I met the lovely Annmarie Hansen after a taco-themed ride where we bonded over our love of both biking and dancing. She then told me all about the PAL Ambassador program, and I soon became a regular PAL – attending pizza parties, block parties, and even pulling the trailer around town!

As a year-long PAL volunteer, I experienced first-hand the positive impact that Annmarie and the PAL Ambassadors have had on the Arlington community. I’m thrilled to contribute my own enthusiasm to the program and continue to build on our message to help people stay safe on our sidewalks and streets.

To become an Arlington PAL Ambassador, sign up here!

Tonight’s PAL Ambassador Block Party!

You ready for our monthly Arlington Block Party? Meet us at the corner of N. Sycamore St. and Lee Highway between 4:30pm and 6:30pm. The PAL Ambassadors will have signs, giveaways, and some surprises!

Click here for more information.


BikeArlington launched the PAL campaign 2 years ago with the strong sentiment that no matter who we are or how we choose to get around town, our roadways depend on a social contract that everyone is following the rules and paying attention. Whether we’re walking, driving, or biking we rely on our fellow road-users to be PALs; Predictable. Alert. Lawful.

The mission of the Washington Area Bicyclist Association is to create a healthy, more livable region by promoting bicycling for fun, fitness, and affordable transportation; advocating for better bicycling conditions and transportation choices for a healthier environment; and educating children, adults, and motorists about safe bicycling.

 

PAL-logo

Pizza Party With The PAL Ambassadors, TONIGHT!

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Join us for our monthly Arlington PAL (Predictable, Alert, Lawful!) Ambassador Pizza Party tonight at BikeArlington’s Office. This is your monthly opportunity to meet other volunteer ambassadors and learn how the work of PAL is changing roadway culture in Arlington.

We’ll scheme, craft, and prepare for this month’s Block Party and enjoy some pizza and beverages!  It’s free and lots of fun.

Click here for more information and to RSVP.

Thursday, August 20,
6:30pm to 8:30pm
1501 Wilson Blvd, Suite 1100
Arlington, VA 22209

 

Looking forward to seeing you there,
Annmarie!

WABA’s working with BikeArlington to recruit a community of volunteers to inspire more Predictable, Alert, and Lawful road culture in Arlington County. Bike billboards, pizza nights, and block parties — all on your commute home. Click here for more information on the PAL Ambassadors and join us at our next event!

JOB: Part-Time PAL Ambassador Program Coordinator!

The Washington Area Bicyclist Association (WABA) is looking for a part-time coordinator for the Arlington PAL Ambassador program, a community-oriented outreach and encouragement program to inspire more road-users to be predictable, alert, and lawful.

The PAL Ambassadors are educators and enthusiasts who work to bring better bicycling to the people of Arlington County.  Ambassadors commit through their actions to be a PALs; more predictable, alert, lawful road user. And help shape roadway culture by attending volunteer nights and PAL block parties where we promote our messages, get creative, and get interactive at intersections.

The Arlington PAL Ambassador Coordinator is responsible for most aspects of the program, including volunteer recruitment,  event scheduling and staffing, and developing and executing new outreach ideas. The PAL Ambassador coordinator will also maintain and expand the program’s trailer program, our rolling bike billboards with PAL messaging. The position will report to WABA’s Outreach Coordinator.

This position is part-time, 20 hours/week and compensation is $14 per hour.

Responsibilities

The Arlington PAL  Ambassador Coordinator will:

  • Run the calendar of two monthly PAL events and appear in public as the face of area bicycling.
  • Develop and implement the volunteer night and block party, including: messaging, scheduling, logistics, volunteer coordination, loading and unloading, staffing, and pulling the bicycle trailer.
  • Communicate an effective and encouraging message about bikes and bicycling to volunteer PAL ambassadors, and bicyclists, motorists, and pedestrians.
  • Run the Bike Ambassador Trailer program, which involves pulling our advertising/public awareness bike trailer specific to bicyclist, motorist and pedestrian behaviors.
  • Administration tasks, including: volunteer recruitment/coordination, data entry, equipment maintenance, clerical work, and grant reporting.

Preferred Qualifications

The ideal candidate will have:

  • A strong commitment to WABA’s mission and be a skillful and committed bicyclist with a solid understanding of the principles of bicycling safety and traffic law.
  • Experience in project management, events planning/management, marketing and/or volunteer coordination.
  • Supervisory experience a plus.
  • Excellent writing, presentation and public speaking skills.
  • A flexible schedule and willingness to work evenings.
  • Experience with Microsoft Office, Facebook and Twitter, experience with Salsa/Democracy in Action and WordPress a plus.
  • The ability to pull a bicycle trailer weighing 10 lbs. for 1-3 hours.
  • The ability to lift at least 50 lbs.
  • The ability to organize time wisely and multi-task in a relaxed, fun environment.
  • Conversational fluency in Spanish strongly preferred.
  • Prior League of American Bicyclist Instructor certification a plus.

About the Washington Area Bicyclist Association

Making bicycling better through advocacy and education, the Washington Area Bicyclist Association (WABA) promotes biking as a healthy, low-cost, and environmentally-friendly form of transportation and recreation. With 4,000 members region-wide, WABA serves bicyclists throughout the Washington, DC Metropolitan Area, including the District of Columbia and parts of Maryland and Virginia.

Contact

Send a cover letter and resume to jobs@waba.org by Friday, July 17th. No phone calls please. Position available immediately.

WABA is committed to providing equal employment opportunity for all persons regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, marital status, political affiliation, sexual orientation or gender identity, disability, sex or age.


WABA’s working with BikeArlington to recruit a community of volunteers to inspire more Predictable, Alert, and Lawful road culture in Arlington County. Bike billboards, pizza nights, and block parties — all on your commute home. BikeArlington launched the PAL campaign 2 years ago with the strong sentiment that no matter who we are or how we choose to get around town, our roadways depend on a strong social contract. Whether we’re walking, driving, or biking we rely on our fellow road-users to be PALs; Predictable. Alert. Lawful.

 

 

This Thursday’s Block Party With Your PALs!

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Want to reach your
Destination faster?
Be a PAL
Avoid disaster!

Join us for our next PAL Block Party and show off our Burma Shave signs!  We’ll be holding our awesome series of signs at the intersection of Lee, Old Dominion, Military and Quincy.

Join us for 20 minutes or full the full 2 hours. It will be a good time. After the event, we’ll ride up the road a little and get a beer at Cowboy Cafe.

Click here for more details and to RSVP.

Hope to see you there,
Pete.


BikeArlington launched the PAL campaign 2 years ago with the strong sentiment that no matter who we are or how we choose to get around town, our roadways depend on a social contract that everyone is following the rules and paying attention. Whether we’re walking, driving, or biking we rely on our fellow road-users to be PALs; Predictable. Alert. Lawful.

The mission of the Washington Area Bicyclist Association is to create a healthy, more livable region by promoting bicycling for fun, fitness, and affordable transportation; advocating for better bicycling conditions and transportation choices for a healthier environment; and educating children, adults, and motorists about safe bicycling.