Bike Everywhere Day with Books on Bikes!

How is your Bike to Work Month going? At the Library, we’re bike enthusiasts all the time. Perhaps you’ve heard about our Books on Bikes program. We can thank Jared Mills and Linda Johns for initiating this grant-funded pilot program in 2013, setting up customized trailers and a special collection of library materials of 400 popular titles that can be biked around to different events in the neighborhood [1]. Books on Bikes, or BoB, is a great community resource that can serve patrons who might not be able (or want to) go into a library branch, registering new borrowers, checking items out, or just hanging out together in the park. In the beginning the BoB team would haul bike trailers ranging from 18-40 pounds [2] and capable of lugging 500 pounds of materials [3], from Central Library all the way to places like Seward Park, then back again. That’s a load of commitment! Continue reading “Bike Everywhere Day with Books on Bikes!”

May is National Bike Month!

“Get a bicycle. You will not regret it if you live.” – Mark Twain, Taming the Bicycle

Whether you are an experienced cyclist or beginner, now is a good time to re-commit to Pedal Power. Perhaps you want more exercise. Perhaps you feel guilty with your greenhouse gas emissions. Perhaps you want to know Seattle better, in which case cycling will bring you to new streets. And perhaps you are like me, wishing you knew bike mechanics so you don’t have to purchase tune-up packages once a year.

It won’t surprise you that we have fabulous books about bikes in our library system. Here are a few of my recommendations:

everyday bicyclingEveryday Bicycling: Ride a Bike for Transportation (Whatever Your Lifestyle) by Elly Blue

Witty and accessible, this book shows how cycling can be fun for anyone – even for the beginner’s learning curve. Learn rules of the road – and how to keep yourself out of embarrassing accidents. Read about possible dilemmas not often talked about, such as crotch health. And receive tips on how to organize your own community activities like neighborhood rides (because it’s more fun with more than one). Continue reading “May is National Bike Month!”

Spring Biking

The daffodils and tulips are finally indicating that it is spring here in Seattle. It is time to shake off the winter doldrums and enjoy some fresh air and sunshine. A perfect way to do that in our beautiful city is by bike. Whether you pull an old clunker from storage or plunk down the cash for sparkly new fixie, the library has plenty of biking books to inspire you to get out and ride.

Everyday Bicycling by Elly Blue is a great place to start if you are new to riding or just want to brush up on the basics. Hand signals, types of bikes and how to be safe are all covered in this slim volume. Continue reading “Spring Biking”

Books that are One with the Bike

I’ve been reading some interesting books about bikes and bike riding, racing and commuting. Here are a few books that have an interesting angle or two. Sometimes the angle is from the ground looking up.

This is Parkin’s follow up to his very popular A Dog in a Hat. This time he returns to the states and learns to ride a wide tired bike over snowmobile tracks. When he finally gets his chance to race in America he finds this snow training has been all wrong for the quick and tumble races that lay before him in the American South.

“I’ve been riding a bicycle as my principal means of transportation in New York since the early 1980’s.” So says the author and musician in this book where he recounts his bicycling travels in Berlin, Istanbul, Buenos Aires, Manila, Sydney, London and U.S. cities big and small from New York to Sweetwater Texas. Continue reading “Books that are One with the Bike”

A Cyclist’s Soundtrack

My trusty steed. Photo by Abby B.

May is here, and that means it’s time once again for one of my favorite events of the year, Bike to Work Month. To increase the visibility of urban cyclists and encourage others to ride their bicycles to get around the city, Cascade Bicycle Club sponsors a number of events throughout the month, including the Group Health Commute Challenge and Bike to Work Day (Friday, May 20th). Continue reading “A Cyclist’s Soundtrack”