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Saskatoon Cycles January 2024 Newsletter

Jan. 27 – Slow Roll: “The Weather’s Brisk, But Delightful!”

Remember to join us for the “The Weather’s Brisk, But Delightful” Slow Roll on Saturday, January 27, 2024, our first group ride of the New Year.

If the forecasts are to be believed, our attempts at keeping winter around will be challenged by temperatures above zero next week, so if you like hearing tires crunch the snow while you ride, this Saturday is your chance to experience it!

As usual, we’ll be keeping a leisurely pace as we pedal on some low-traffic routes, with enough vigor to keep warm but still be able to visit.

We will gather at the River Landing Fire Vessel (just south of the Remai Modern) for a departure at 2PM. Be sure to bring appropriate clothing and gear for whatever Ma Nature decides to throw at us!

The Year Ahead

The Board of the (Chain?) Rings: artist’s rendition of the SC board of directors in lieu of a proper photograph.

2023 was a tumultuous year that saw new levels of member engagement, expanded education services, and new infrastructure announcements mixed with the sombre tragedy of two cycling deaths within months. We were reminded that while we have the power to shift the conversation around active transportation and inspire the community to request more from city council, we still remain “vulnerable road users”. We’re making progress, but there is still so much to do.

On Saturday, January 20th, the Saskatoon Cycles board of directors held its annual retreat to welcome new members and strategize for the coming year. 2024 promises to be another very busy cycling calendar, and we’re excited with our lineup of priorities:

  • Steadfast advocacy for improved and safer active transportation
  • Launch a new campaign to make a safe network a priority for city administration
  • Deliver a robust Bike Valet for the 2024 event/festival season
  • Provide cycling events and activities for all ages and skill levels throughout the year
  • Expand the Pedal Express bicycle delivery program
  • Continue to build up cycling instruction in Saskatoon
  • Improve our wayfinding and route mapping resources
  • Increase outreach and community coalition building

The Saskatoon Cycles board is a humble bunch, and knows it doesn’t accomplish this work on its own. Every year we rely on dozens of volunteers to help deliver these important services to the city. We hope you’ll once again roll up your sleeves in 2024 and pitch in with your time, energy, and dollars!

BYXE Week

Once again, we’re partnering with the City of Saskatoon to present Winter 2024 BYXE Week from February 17 – 25. The event aims to promote and encourage cycling year-round and celebrate those who make cycling a part of their commute.

We have another fun schedule of events designed to engage cyclists of all ages and abilities for the winter season:

  • Slow Roll – February 17
  • Bike to Work Day – February 22
  • Scavenger Hunt
  • Prizes!

The Winter 2023 BYXE Week page can be found by clicking here. Please check back often, as we’ll be loading more details into the page leading up to the event.

New Board of Directors Spotlight: Jory Cadman

As a non-profit, Saskatoon Cycles relies heavily on the efforts of its volunteer board. Our Board of Directors bring a range of perspectives and skill sets to the organization, contributing what they can without pay or very much glory. At our AGM on November 15th, 2024 three people joined our Board. The first we’ll introduce you to is Jory Cadman.

Q: Why do you ride a bike?

I started year-round cycle commuting when I was in high school. From there I got into cycle touring, and have since branched out into other types of cycling. I do it for fun, fitness, and for environmental reasons. There are also so many different cycling-related groups in Saskatoon (mountain biking, road riding, cyclocross, etc.) and I have met some amazing people from being part of these groups.

Q: Why did you decide to run for the board?

I love Saskatoon and I love riding bikes of all kinds. I want to be part of the initiative to make sure people feel safe, comfortable, and empowered while riding a bike.

Q: How would you describe cycling in Saskatoon to someone new to the city?

It’s not perfect! We certainly have some challenges. But the cycling community is amazing, and Saskatoon is a nice size for biking, and beautiful 🙂

Q: If you could make one change to the cycling experience in Saskatoon overnight, what would it be?

Ensuring everyone who wants a bike, has access to a bike that works properly and fits them.

Q: Do you have any favourite cycling rides or routes in or around Saskatoon?

I love riding around the university, Meewasin trail, Spadina, and downtown.

Q: When you’re not cycling, what are your favourite activities?

Running, triathlon, cross-country skiing, and volunteering for other organizations in the city.

Information Building

As promised, we’ll be reminding you frequently throughout 2024 to help us lay the groundwork for better cycling in Saskatoon by contributing to cycling data collection. One of the biggest missing pieces we face is a lack of information that indicates how much cycling is happening and where our bikes are taking us. You can get started on the remedy for this gap today. 

  1. Install Strava on your phone and track every ride or walk you take. You only need a free account. And if you already use a tracking app, check to see if it has a Strava integration. There are more than 100 apps that Strava connects with.

    Strava anonymizes the data from all users in an area and creates the Strava heatmap. Images from these heatmaps were a powerful visual to show that there are cyclists and walkers using the streets north of Circle Drive on Ave C. But we need as many cyclists as possible to be using that system!
  2. Bookmark Bikemaps.org and report every time you have a cycling crash, a near-miss, see a cycling hazard, or have your bike stolen.

    This is NOT instead of calling an ambulance or the police. Absolutely do that first if it’s needed!! Bikemaps.org is a system that aims to catch as many as possible of the almost 70% of all cycling incidents or near misses that don’t get reported officially.

    Every time you report a near miss or collision it helps identify danger spots. The more people who use the system to report whenever they experience something unpleasant the more accurately we can see the dangerous spots that need priority attention. 

Get Strava

Find out more about the Strava app at strava.com

Donate

Your donations give us the resources to press toward a Saskatoon where cycling is a viable, year-round mode of transportation that is safe, convenient, and comfortable for all ages.

We want your kids and their grandma to simply hop on their bikes to go grab an ice cream and enjoy the beauty of Saskatoon. For you or your partner to pick up groceries or a library book. And we really want you to be able to commute to work and back safely and conveniently.

Your donation helps us work on these three ‘pillars’ of cycling development for Saskatoon:

  • Infrastructure – A safe, convenient, comfortable and well maintained cycling network throughout the city that allows cyclists to go from every neighbourhood to key destinations
  • Ridership – Educate, encourage, and promote cycling so more people choose bicycles as a convenient and safe transportation option year round.
  • Culture – Educate, encourage, and promote diversity in ridership with respectful inclusion of all modes of transportation.

Please Donate Today


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