Saskatoon Cycles August 2022 Newsletter
Upcoming Slow Rolls
Hey, Saskatoon, make sure your calendar is open for our upcoming slow roll events!
On Thursday, September 8, 2022 we’ll be riding to honor our late long-time chairperson and Saskatoon’s most legendary cycling advocate, in the 2nd Annual Cathy Watts Memorial Slow Roll.
This year’s slow roll will begin at 6PM at the west end of the Bowl at the U of S Campus, and wind its way to different points significant to Cathy’s life and work: President Murray Park, D’Lish by Tish Cafe, the Trans Canada Trail Pavilion at Gabriel Dumont Park, and 9 Mile Legacy Brewing. Everyone is invited to join the ride at any point to help remember this incredible woman.
If inclined, you can further celebrate Cathy’s legacy by donating to The Cathy Watts Memorial Scholarship (UofS) or to Saskatoon Cycles.
On Saturday, September 24th, we’ll be exploring the wonders of Saskatoon’s 2022 Nuit Blanche by bicycle. Stay tuned to our social media for times and route for our tour of this wonderful, free night-time contemporary arts festival featuring projections, sculptural installations, performance, music, theatre, and other contemporary art forms that wow festival-goers late into the evening.
Bike Valet – Final Events of 2022
We’ve checked thousands of bikes this year, thanks to our most excellent team of volunteers and supervisors. Patrons of Nutrien Children’s Festival, Saskatchewan Marathon, Saskatoon Pride Festival, SaskTel Jazz Fest, Canada Day, Taste of Saskatchewan, and WEGO have all enjoyed their event experiences just a little more knowing that their rides have been safe and secure.
On August 26th, the Saskatoon Teacher’s Convention saw us park close to 200 bikes in 45 minutes, which is… a LOT. A huge shout out to the teachers for choosing a bike trip, and to our great team for handling the traffic.
The last Valet of the season will be for the Nutrien Fireworks Festival on Sept. 2 and 3. We’re still looking for some volunteers for that event, so if you haven’t signed up for a shift yet this year, here’s your chance! You can sign up here and get entered for our Volunteer Appreciation Party (planned for some time in October).
The 1st Annual Poker Chipmunk Rally
The weather was hot and dry, spirits were high, and the “competition” “stiff” for the 1st Annual Poker Chip(munk) Rally, held on Saturday, August 27.
Close to two dozen intrepid souls braved the sunny conditions to cycle around Meewasin and test their mettle with feats of strength and agility (bean bag toss, (rounded) lawn darts, and ladder ball), all in the pursuit of chips of unknown value. Heat stroke, at least one leaking tire, a decomposing bike helmet, and the lure of ice cream were among the challenges facing the participants, but everyone made it through to the finish.
After a random draw to determine the chip point values, the winning player card was calculated to be that of Hila Smart. Hila was one of the contest’s youngest entrants, who navigated the afternoon with dad Justin. Congratulations to both!
No chipmunks were available for comment at the time of printing, but the fact that no photos of the elusive creatures were taken during the event seems to indicate that there was a definite lack of interest on their part. Perhaps next year?
The Good, Bad, and Ugly Slow Roll
Thanks to everyone who participated in the Saturday, August 20, 2022 ride with Murray Gross of Jane’s Walk Saskatoon, who guided participants to different cycling infrastructure features around Saskatoon. Riders braved some hot temperatures to see the “good, bad, and ugly” elements of some city routes firsthand, from poorly painted crosswalks to the cycling-friendly “beg button” at 23rd St. W and Ave. H N.
The slow roll illustrated the dual nature of Saskatoon cycling: so much natural beauty and some genuinely good planning and execution of infrastructure, but also many instances of neglect, indifference, and myopia involving the city’s active transportation file.
One inescapable conclusion: cycling with others can be fun!
You can check out a video vignette of the ride here (and don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel):
YXE Cycling Stories
In our July newsletter, we told you about DTNYXE’s program for free rental bikes at downtown Saskatoon hotels. Maybe you’ve seen them out and about?
Perhaps it’s some frequency illusion bias at work, but at least one Friend of Cycling saw TWO couples (within the space of an hour) days after we published that piece.
Leah and Nev were visiting from Victoria, BC as part of their lifelong tour of Canadian cities. Leah is a history teacher, and they’ve made a point to delve firsthand into the past at each destination! They stayed at the famed Delta Bessborough, which was likely a great start.
Ed and Michele were staying at the Alt Hotel on their way to a Swim Trek adventure in Missinipe, SK. Not only was the purpose of the trip fascinating, the fact they were from Washington, DC made their story all the more excellent. They were also delighted to learn that they could stay on a bike path all the way to Wanuskewin!
Not every cycling story this month involves a tourist, though. Flying *almost* under the radar was Saskatoon’s 1st Annual Tutu Ride, a spontaneous group ride dedicated solely to spreading some color to the community! Organizer Alejandra did not offer next year’s date at time of printing, but if you have a spare tutu in your bike garage, you may want to dust it off…
Saskatoon Cycles offers a tip of our cycling caps to everyone choosing two wheels for their summer adventures! We’d love to get the spotlight on you too; you can share your story with us anytime right here!
New Cycling Caps for Sale!
We have cycling caps in the shop now, along with a refreshed t-shirt design (not pictured) in all sizes! They are bright, comfortable, and as you can see from the photo, extremely fashionable!
You can browse our shop here!
Our work relies heavily on financial donations from enthusiastic bike riders who want to see the cycling infrastructure and culture in Saskatoon continue to bloom and grow. Our programs make an important impact on the quality of life in Saskatoon.
Please support our efforts with your donations or with your time as a volunteer.