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Saskatoon Cycles November 2023 Newsletter

The “Snow Doubt” Slow Roll – November 25

Mother Nature is keeping us guessing right down to the wire.

Saturday, November 25, 2023 is the date for our “Snow Doubt” Slow Roll and we still don’t know for sure whether there will be snow or not!

The forecast is suggesting a windy, snowy, yet near zero degrees ride in the early afternoon. Questions (or “doubts”) abound: Will there be snow? If yes, how fluffy might it be? Will it stick around or melt immediately? How many cyclists will embrace whatever Saturday brings? Will they, can they, bring the right gear for the occasion? Will there be snow in December?

The “Snow Doubt” Slow Roll reminds us that we live in times of great uncertainty. The very foundations on which our civilization rests sometime feel unstable enough to render every decision we make either meaningless or existential.

This much we know: Saskatoon Cycles will be present for this ride, and we will love it.

Come be a part of the adventure:

Saturday, November 25, 2023

2 PM departure time

River Landing Fire Vessel (between Remai Modern and Sugar Shack)

A slow roll in the more doubtless times.

Giving Tuesday – November 28

Everyone seems to know about Black Friday and Cyber Monday and their emphasis on low low prices and frenzied consumerism, but are we as familiar with Giving Tuesday?

givingtuesday.ca describes the day like this:

GivingTuesday is a global generosity movement unleashing the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world. GivingTuesday was created in 2012 as a simple idea: a day that encourages people to do good. The idea caught on and has grown around the world, inspiring hundreds of millions of people to give, collaborate, and celebrate generosity.

As a non-profit advocacy organization, Saskatoon Cycles receives no operational funding from government or institutions. This means our advocacy, services, and programs are in large part dependent on donations. Please consider donating to us on Giving Tuesday, this year on November 28 (though we do graciously accept donations anytime before and after!).

You can donate here: saskatooncycles.org/giving-tuesday/

Bike Doctor and World Bicycle Relief 2023

The Bike Doctor is involved again this year with World Bicycle Relief, an international charity that works to build up communities around the world through bikes.

World Bicycle Relief partners with communities to identify challenges and deploy
community-led programming and purpose-designed bicycles to improve access to
healthcare, jobs, markets, and education. Trained bike assemblers and mechanics create
new revenue streams while ensuring bicycle owners have reliable access to maintenance
and spare parts.

info@worldbicyclerelief.org

The Bike Doctor invites you to make a BIG impact this holiday season: they’re “partnering with Trek and four local families to help raise $1 million for World Bicycle Relief. Donate now through December 31 and your donation will be matched by Trek (up to $375,000)* and several Saskatoon families (up to $40,000). 

A special thanks to the Yuel, Morsky, Vanderhooft  and Wyant families for their generosity.”

Annual General Meeting 2023

2023 has been a very busy and challenging year for Saskatoon Cycles and the broader cycling community. At our Annual General Meeting on November 15, 2023, we reflected on all the accomplishments, successes, and heartbreaking events that took place over the last few months.

Highlights:

  • Bike Valet – 3300 bikes parked by 135 volunteers at 13 festival/events
  • BYXE Weeks – record participation and engagement for winter and spring
  • Pedal Express launch and continued development
  • Membership – updated system allows for paid members and better engagement
  • Educational activities – six separate events building skills and knowledge with newcomer organizations and community groups
  • Advocacy – increased presence and focus with city council, city administration, media, and community stakeholders
  • Community engagement – Pride Parade, Ride for Refuge, Rally for Bike Safety and Awareness, Slow Rolls, and much, much more.

We were happy to welcome three new board members at the AGM: Jory Cadman, Murray Gross, and Brian Sawatzky. We’ll introduce them with more detail in future newsletters but we can say for now that they’re proven ambassadors and volunteers for Saskatoon Cycles and we’re certain they’ll be assets as directors.

Departing the board were Erin Edwards (co-chair) and Johanna Bergerman (treasurer). We sincerely thank both for their contributions to Saskatoon Cycles, and wish them well in their post-board endeavors (which will hopefully include some volunteer work!).

We’re proud of the work our small but mighty team has been able to do in 2023, but recognize that nothing feels like a victory in the shadow of tragedy. In two events less than four months apart, Natasha Fox and Darin Kinniewess were killed riding their bikes and the impact of their passing has been difficult to overstate. We were reminded of how vulnerable we are when traveling next to heavy, metal vehicles. How our infrastructure doesn’t prioritize safety. How slowly bureaucracy can move even with good intentions. How many lives can be shattered by the loss of one. How important it is to keep all things in perspective.

We’ve redoubled our resolve to make Saskatoon a truly bike friendly city in the hope that Natasha and Darin’s deaths can be the last we see on our streets. We hope you’ll join us and have your voice heard loud and clear in 2024.

Advocacy 2024

Saskatoon Cycles will be out of the gate early in 2024 to press for faster, better, and safer infrastructure throughout the city, and we’ll be calling on you to lend your voice at crucial steps along the way. We’ll be offering a lot more detail in January about how to join in on important campaigns, but for now, there are a handful of fairly simple steps you can take to help us build data capacity that could inform future infrastructure projects:

Become a member. This one is easy, and costs only what you want to pay. Registering to become a member allows us to communicate important developments to you as they arise, which helps us turn your voice up to 11.

Become familiar with, and use, BikeMaps.org. This crowd-sourced database (meaning you enter your experiences) helps track and map your cycling adventures, allowing you to include features like road hazards, collisions, near-misses, or thefts. The more input collected, the better equipped we can be to make the case for improvements at hot spots around the city. You can start entering your most recent experiences right now.

Register and participate with strava.com. This app tracks all kinds of physical activities, including cycling. Once every month, users’ routes are aggregated so no one’s individual activity is viewable. Then the anonymized data of all our travels are added to a heat-map that shows a local overview of active transportation use patterns. You can get the app by clicking on the buttons below.

Get Strava

Find out more about the Strava app at strava.com

The more cyclists we can connect to, and the more information we can share together, the more powerful our voices become. If you have any questions about these applications, please contact us at contactus@saskatooncycles.org

Saskatoon Cycles Gift Ideas!

If you’re looking for some cool gifts for the holiday season, look no further than our own shop. We have great looking hats and t-shirts available, and every dollar from every sale goes to supporting our operations.

Visit our shop here!

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