Learn to Bike – Sat. May 16, 9:30am

Tuesday, May 12 by joegorun

Join the West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance for its annual Learn to Bike Event on May 16, 2015. The event is for children who must be 5 years old or older and be able to ride a bike with training wheels. Meet at the West Windsor Community Farmers’ Market between 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.; the event ends promptly at 12:30 p.m. Pre-registration is suggested; you must bring a bike in good working order and a helmet. Cost is $40 per family and free to current members of WWBPA as of June 1, 2014. Email wwbikeped@gmail.com and watch our Facebook page and website (wwbpa.org) for late changes.

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Learn to Bike at the Farmers’ Market on June 14

Tuesday, April 23 by JerryFoster

Please join us at the Farmers Market on Saturday June 14, 2014, to help teach kids (and any adults who care to try) to learn how to bike.

We use a safe and effective method that teaches kids to balance on their bikes without pedals or training wheels. Then the pedals go back on and we review how to start and stop. No clutching the back of the seat! Children generally learn pretty quickly, though they may need more practice the next day or two.  It works! We’ve already taught more than 100 kids. Watch the video from our first class!

To register or volunteer, please send us an email at wwbikeped@gmail.com. If you’re not already a member, we ask that you join us (at least at the $25 Adult level, please consider the $40 Family membership). We’re an all-volunteer private 501(c)3 organization, so your membership donation is tax deductible.

Hope to see you there!

 

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West Windsor’s New Biking Instructor Coach

Tuesday, January 29 by JerryFoster

Congratulations to WWBPA member Les Leathem for earning his League Certified Instructor Coach designation from the League of American Bicyclists! Les recently returned from the final seminar in Houston, and is now qualified to teach new biking instructors.

Of course Les also teaches biking as well. Several classes aimed at helping people learn how to ride safely on the road are planned for this spring:

At All Saints Church, Princeton (Fri: 6:30-9pm, Sat: 9am-2:30pm)

April 19/20, May 17/18, June 14/15

At Bernie’s Bicycle Center, Hamilton ( Wed: 630-9pm, Sat: 9am-12 noon)

April 17/24/27

Course cost is $50 for the general public, $40 for members of WWBPA. For more information contact Les Leathem at ljleathem@verizon.net or 609-578-0625

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Another Bike Lesson for Cub Scouts

Monday, November 26 by silvia

Nine eager young bicyclists and their bikes, mostly second-grade scouts from Pack 66, joined the WWBPA for a lesson on bicycle safety on a beautiful Saturday in November.

We shared lots of valuable lessons, from pre-ride checks, known as the ABC Quick Check, and proper fits for helmets (flat on the head, and snug) to being courteous and watching for others, whether riding on the sidewalk or in the street. We hope they always signal!

But these kids really just wanted to ride, so we headed out to test their skills. The branches left over from Sandy that were scattered on the sidewalks behind Maurice Hawk Elementary School became our obstacle course, and the group also got a taste of riding in the street. All did great, and we hope to see them on a bike ride next summer!

This was our second session for scouts in which we talked about bicycling basics. If your group would like something similar, email us at wwbikeped@gmail.com.

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Scouts Get a Bike Safety Lesson

Tuesday, October 23 by silvia

Two dens of 8 and 9-year-old scouts from Pack 66 got a 90-minute lesson in bike safety led by Les Leatham, a West Windsor resident who is a bicycling instructor certified by the League of American Bicyclists, and some volunteers from the West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance.

The group went through helmet fitting, the ABC Quick Check (Air, Brakes, Cranks, Chain and Cassette, Quick Release and a final check) that should be performed before heading out on a ride, talked about what they already knew about bike riding and some things they didn’t, including that bikes on the road must follow the same rules of the road as cars.

Then the group took a ride through Mercer County Park, and finished with a different sort of race: how slow can you go, without stopping, turning around or putting your feet on the ground. This tests their balance skills and ability to handle their bike in a fun way. The last one to reach the finish line was the winner.

Would your group, no matter the age, like a short lesson on bike safety and bike skills? Contact the WWBPA at wwbikeped@gmail.com

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Biking and Hiking With Princeton Adult School

Thursday, September 6 by silvia

Zaitz Preserve WalkPrinceton Adult School’s fall course list includes several sports and outdoor recreation classes, including a “learn to bike” class for adults, a bicycle repair and maintenance class, hiking in New Jersey and more.

The “learn to bike” class, taught by the founder of Bike Exchange, comprises four one-hour classes on Saturday mornings.

The four-session bike maintenance class will be held at Harts Cyclery on Route 31 in Pennington.

The hiking class will take participants to four different areas of the state on Saturdays. There’s also a separate class that spends an October morning exploring the woods at the Institute of Advanced Study with a professor who has studied the woods for more than 40 years.

Details on all courses are on the Princeton Adult School website.

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More New Cyclists

Tuesday, June 26 by silvia

About 22 kids attended the West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance’s “learn to bike” class at the farmers’ market this month, and we are delighted that most learned to ride without training wheels that day.

This was our third class for kids since we began holding sessions last spring, and we once again thank Bike New York for teaching us this simple method: remove training wheels and pedals, get kids scooting and lifting their feet off the ground until they master balance, reintroduce the pedals, show them how to start and stop, and let them start riding.

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A “Learn to Bike” Class for Kids in June

Sunday, May 20 by silvia

The West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance is holding its first “learn to bike” class of 2012 to get more kids off training wheels and enjoying the freedom of two wheels.

We use a safe and effective method that teaches kids to balance on their bikes without pedals or training wheels. Then the pedals go back on and we review how to start and stop. No clutching the back of the seat! Children generally learn pretty quickly, though they may need more practice with mom and dad the next day.  It works! We’ve already taught more than 700 kids. Watch the video from our first class!

This session is being held at the West Windsor Farmers’ Market on June 16 and is being offered to WWBPA members only. Kids can begin arriving at 9.m. and stay as long as they like, until the market closes at 1 p.m. The market is held at the Vaughn Drive commuter parking lot.

Not sure if your membership is current? You should have received an acknowledgment letter from us in the past year. Or ask, and we can check our records.

Preregistration via wwbikeped@gmail.com is required.

Bring a bike in good working order; kids should be able to touch the ground while seated. Helmets are required and can be purchased from the WWBPA for just $10.

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Celebrate National Bike Month

Wednesday, May 2 by silvia

bike month 2012 logoMay is National Bike Month, and the week of May 13 is Bike to Work Week. A number of events are planned in West Windsor and neighboring communities; one (or more) is sure to be right for you. We’ve also included a few for walkers. (Note that not all events listed below are organized by the WWBPA)

May 5: West Windsor Walks to the opening day of the farmers’ market. Join us at 8:50 a.m. in the parking lot at the back of Maurice Hawk Elementary school for a leisurely stroll of just over a mile. We’ll start walking at 9 a.m. and are excited that the route this year will take us along some stretches of sidewalk that weren’t there last year. Kids will be challenged by a game of “I Spy.” People in wheelchairs and kids in strollers are welcome.

May 6: Bring your child (up to age 10) and bike to a free bike skills class at Plainsboro’s Founders Day. Princeton’s police department is sponsoring a separate bike skills class that includes a bike obstacle course on May 19; call 921-2100, ext. 1848 for details.

May 11-12: Adults aren’t being left out. This skills class, offered through the West Windsor Recreation Department, is for those who want to boost their confidence when riding on the road. Cost is $50, but the WWBPA will reimburse $25 of the cost for members. Plus we’ll cover the other $25 for the first five members who write a review of the class that we can use on our website.

May 12: Buy a bike at Bike Exchange in Ewing and get a free helmet from Greater Mercer Transportation Management Association. Learn more about this and other GMTMA events during National Bike Month here.

May 14-18: National Bike to Work Week. Register for a free T-shirt and a raffle with GMTMA.

May 15: Bikers Breakfast at the Princeton Junction train station, sponsored by the WWBPA and Greater Mercer Transportation Management Association, starting at 6 a.m. Grab a drink and a snack on us. Want a bike locker? We’ll tell you how to get one.

Ride of Silence logoMay 16: The WWBPA is supporting one of three area Ride of Silence events to honor cyclists killed or injured on the roads. Meet at 6:45 p.m. in the Municipal Center parking lot; the silent one-hour ride will leave at 7 p.m. We will have a West Windsor police escort and a funeral hearse courtesy of Mather Hodge. We suggest you wear a black armband and turn on your front and rear lights. We will stick together for the entire 10-12 mile route. Last year, more than 12,000 cyclists took part in events around the world.

May 19: Tour historic Trenton with the Trenton Cycling Revolution. More information about this 15-mile ride and registration at www.trentoncycling.org.

May 26: BikeFest, West Windsor’s bicycling extravaganza, with rides for people of all abilities, from 1.5 miles to 40 miles. Register at www.westwindsorbikefest.com. Say “hi” to the WWBPA after your ride!

June 16: The WWBPA holds a free “learn to bike” class for kids who want to get off training wheels at the West Windsor Farmers’ Market. Watch the video of last year’s class. Note: This is a members-only event.

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Bike Skills for Kids

Monday, April 23 by silvia

So your child knows to how to bike but needs some extra safety skills? As part of Plainsboro’s Founders Day celebration, the township’s recreation department is sponsoring a free “bicycling skills 123” class on Sunday, May 6 for kids up to age 10. Instructors certified by the League of American Bicyclists will teach them about cycling safety and responsible riding.

Participants will learn about and practice stopping, proper signaling, and other aspects of basic traffic safety. They will also ride in a “chaos box” to demonstrate the importance of following the rules of the road.

Come with a bike and helmet to the municipal grounds between 1:30 p.m. and 5 p.m.

The WWBPA is delighted to support the event.

Can’t make it? BikeFest will include a “bike rodeo” where kids can practice their skills.

Adults can take a more intensive traffic skills class through the West Windsor Recreation Department.

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Learn to Ride in Traffic

Wednesday, April 18 by JerryFoster

If you feel confident about your bike-handling skills but haven’t yet mustered up the courage to try road riding, this class is for you! WWBPA member and League of American Bicyclists’ certified instructor Les Leathem will teach a Traffic Skills 101 course at the Senior Center on Friday May 11 and Saturday May 12.

WWBPA members who complete the course will be reimbursed $25, and the first five members who write us an account of your experience taking the course will be reimbursed an additional $25!

Please see the West Windsor Recreation Division web site for course details.

 

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A “Learn to Bike” Class … For Adults

Tuesday, April 10 by silvia

Adults on bikes

Not everyone learns to ride a bicycle as a child. But it’s never too late to learn and join your family on their outings. The West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance is holding a special “learn to bike” class for adults of all ages (as well as mature teens) on Sunday April 29. We will use the same pedal-free balance technique that works so well in our “learn to bike’ classes for children. The class will be held between 10 a.m. and noon in the Vaughn Drive parking lot off Alexander Road (by the Princeton Junction train station) and is free.

Most people learn to ride their bikes while taking the class, but even if they don’t, they leave with an easy, crash-free, and low-stress way to teach themselves to ride. You can read about a Bike New York class here (they taught us!)

Just bring a bike and helmet. You must be able to rest your feet flat on the ground while sitting on the bicycle seat. If you don’t have a bike, please tell us so we can make arrangements. No helmet? The WWBPA sells them for just $10.

This is a small class and participants must pre-register via wwbikeped@gmail.com

This is not a class for those who know how to bike but want to become more confident cyclists. The West Windsor Recreation Department is offering a class for you in May called Traffic Skills 101. The WWBPA will offer a “learn to bike” class for kids in June. Watch for details.

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Registration for BikeFest Is Open

Sunday, April 8 by silvia

Claim your spot (and T-shirt) at BikeFest, West Windsor’s big one-day bike extravaganza!

The ninth annual BikeFest is set for May 26 (Saturday of Memorial Day weekend; rain date is Sunday) and includes the usual five route options, from the 1.5-mile loop within Community Park for young kids to the 40-mile route for experienced cyclists. Registration is open; just download the form and mail your check or drop it off at the West Windsor Recreation Department.

BikeFest includes a “bike rodeo” to help younger cyclists learn safe riding skills.

The WWBPA isn’t the organizer of BikeFest; that is Dan Gerstenhaber and his team. But many trustees and student advisors will be there as volunteers, and we’ll also have a table with plenty of materials. So stop for a chat after your ride.

Let’s hear the whirr of many wheels!

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Got the Bike, Now to Maintain It

Sunday, January 1 by silvia

Bike Clinic

Jerry teaches a cyclist how to true his wheels.

Whether you’ve just  received (or given) a bike or have resolved to ride the one you already have more frequently, proper maintenance will help make cycling more enjoyable.

Here are two area classes that will help you learn to do just that:

Mercer County Community College’s continuing education program offers a three-session class starting Jan. 18 at Bernie’s Bicycle Shop in Hamilton. Cost is $59, plus a repair manual (approximately $20). You’ll learn how to clean, lubricate and adjust/repair major components. Look here, then turn to page 54.

If you just want a 45-minute class on how to fix a flat tire and lubricate it, Knapps has a class every month for $10.

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Another Incredible “Learn to Bike” Class

Thursday, September 29 by silvia

Learn to BikeThe West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance taught another 17 kids to bike without training wheels on Saturday by using a low-stress technique taught to us by Bike New York: take off the pedals and training wheels, lower the seat, learn to glide (and balance) and then put the pedals back on. It’s amazing to see how quickly some kids get it! And others just need a bit more time and encouragement. We think it helps that they see so many others doing the same thing.

Did you see us at the farmers’ market? Check out our photos to see what it’s all about.

Many thanks to all our volunteers! Want to join our crew next year?

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Learn to Bike Class

Tuesday, August 30 by silvia

learn to bike classThe West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance is holding its second “learn to bike” class of 2011 to get more kids off training wheels and enjoying the freedom of two wheels.

We use a safe and effective method that teaches kids to balance on their bikes without pedals or training wheels. Then the pedals go back on and we review how to start and stop. No clutching the back of the seat! Children generally learn pretty quickly, though they may need more practice with mom and dad the next day.  It works! We’ve already taught more than 50 kids. Watch the video.

This session is being held at the West Windsor Farmers’ Market on Sept. 24 and is being offered to WWBPA members only. Not sure if your membership is current? You should have received an acknowledgment letter from us in the past year. Or ask, and we can check our records.

Please help us spread the word about this great class with friends, neighbors and colleagues. (They just need to join before signing up a kid. Membership forms are on the website, and Google checkout is an easy payment option. Or see us at the farmers’ market on Sept. 10.)

Preregistration is a must. Email wwbikeped@gmail.com to sign up a child.

One last thing: This class requires many volunteers to help with everything from accepting registration forms to taking off pedals and training wheels. Interested in helping? Email us at wwbikeped@gmail.org. We’ll happily accept as much or as little time as you can offer.

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Watch our ‘Learn to Bike’ Video

Saturday, July 16 by silvia

We now have a video of our fantastic day in May when we taught about 50 kids to ride without training wheels. Watch it!

The next class will be Sept. 24. Watch for details.

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The WWBPA’s May in Pictures

Friday, June 3 by silvia

The WWBPA had something for everyone in May. Where did you see us?

community walk 2011On May 7, we led our second annual walk to mark the start of the farmers’ market season. About 20 people, from grandparents to grandchildren, joined for a walk from Maurice Hawk School to the Farmers’ Market at the Vaughn Drive Parking Lot.  The first stop was at the Arts Center on Alexander Road where Greening of West Windsor (GroWW) was holding an Herb Sale to benefit the plantings at the Arts Center.  We observed the new sidewalk along Alexander Road from Scott Avenue to Wallace Road under construction, and noted that on next year’s walk we would use it.  Crossing Wallace at Alexander instead of at Scott is much safer because cars have a much greater sight line to the pedestrians.  We proceeded to the station, under the tracks, and along the pathway to the Farmers’ Market, where the WWBPA handed out maps and held a drawing for a T-shirt, a reflective vest, a set of lights, a set of ankle bands and a couple of Share the Road decals.

As part of National Bike to Work Week, we joined Greater Mercer Transportation Management Association for a chilly “bikers breakfast” at the station on May 17, offering food, drink and encouragement to cyclists and others. We hope some are ready to get back on a bike, even if not to get to work.

Learn to BikeOn May 21, we were back at the farmers’ market, teaching about 50 kids to ride bikes without training wheels, using a “balance first” method taught to us by Bike New York.

On May 28, we were at BikeFest, talking to participants about what we do and offering ideas on where to ride.

Our “Ride of Silence,” to honor cyclists killed or injured on the roads, was delayed by rain until June 1. We rode through West Windsor, led by a police car and funeral hearse. If you missed us, check out the photos.

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We Teach Kids to Bike

Friday, May 27 by silvia

learn to bike classAbout  50 area kids, generally ages 5 to 7, learned to ride bicycles without training wheels at the West Windsor Farmers’ Market on Saturday , May 21, as they took part in a free “learn to bike” class with the West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance.

The class used a safe and effective method that teaches kids to first sit and “scoot” on their bike without pedals or training wheels until they learn how to balance. Pedals are then reattached, kids are taught how to start and stop and then, with a bit more practice, they are cycling without an adult needing to clutch the back of the seat.  The method isn’t just for kids; the WWBPA also taught one adult on Saturday.

The response from the community – West Windsor and beyond – was incredible and exceeded the WWBPA’s expectations. The feedback from parents who brought their children has been overwhelmingly positive, and the WWBPA will be discussing plans for a future event.

Many thanks to Bike Exchange, which supports the Boys and Girls Club of Trenton by selling good used bikes, for the use of loaner bikes. We learned that it’s much easier to learn balance on a small bike (easier to touch the ground solidly with your feet), and we swapped bikes many times.

Now who left pedals behind?

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We’re Teaching Kids to Bike on Saturday

Friday, May 20 by silvia

Remember how you learned to bike without training wheels? One of your parents was probably clutching the back of the seat and eventually let go.
The WWBPA is doing it differently: At our free class at the WW Farmers’ Market this Saturday, we’ll take off the training wheels and the pedals, and then lower the seat so the child can touch the ground while seated. Kids will learn to balance by scooting while seated and lifting their feet off the ground. Only then will we put the pedals back on and make sure they know how to start and stop before letting them try to ride.
We’ll be teaching from 9 a.m. til the market closes at 1 p.m. Stop by!

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Upcoming Events

Aug 1      WWBPA participating in West Windsor’s National Night Out 5-10pm WW Community Park

Aug  5     WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market

Aug 10    Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

Aug 19    WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market

Sept 9     WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market

Sept 14   Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

Sept 23   WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market – Bike Drive (Donations)

Oct 7       WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market

Oct 12     Monthly Meeting 7 pm – WW Municpal Bldg (Rm D – Lower Level)

Oct 28     WWBPA at the WW Farmers Market – Halloween

Ongoing – Register your bike with the WW Police Dept for Free

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Now Accepting Applications for WWBPA Student Advisory Board

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