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Need a transportation bike for your kid? Good options are out there

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009
Tour de Ladd-9.jpg
Most kids’ bikes available in the US,
like these spotted at Tour de Ladd this fall,
aren’t fitted out for city riding.
(Photo © J. Maus)

After an exhaustive search for a good city bike for my son, I have concluded that kids bikes in general are in a sorry state. Either they are poorly constructed and will last only a year or two or they are overengineered and just not equipped for a city-riding kid.

By the looks of the offerings on the US market, it appears bike manufacturers think that kids mostly go off road and need mountain-type bikes, or that all kids need is a way to cruise around their cul-du-sac with no gears and just foot brakes. (more…)

Review: Bridging the independence gap with the FollowMe

Thursday, October 1st, 2009

[Publisher's note: This review is by our Family Biking columnist Marion Rice. Marion's last column explored safety and cultural issues around carrying infants by bike.]

On test- Follow-me Tandem-2
Griffin and dad test riding the FollowMe.
(Photos © J. Maus)

(more…)

My City Bike: A mama’s perspective

Friday, July 31st, 2009
family_cycling-10.jpg
Marion Rice and daughter Gleneden on
Marion’s city bike: an Xtracycle conversion
with a rear child seat and front basket.
(Photo © J. Maus)

[This is the first in a series of "My City Bike" interviews with Portlanders who ride bikes intended for urban transportation. The first interview is with our family biking columnist Marion Rice.]


BikePortland: What kind of rider are you?

Marion Rice: A very experienced city bike rider.

BP: Describe the bike you ride every day. (more…)

How to navigate through your child’s first bike purchase

Wednesday, May 27th, 2009
Marion Rice and daughter Gleneden

[Publisher's note: This article is by our Family Biking columnist Marion Rice. Marion's last two columns have been about biking while pregnant. Today she talks about negotiating a first bike purchase with your child.]


Starting at about 10 years old, I can remember going everywhere on my bike with my group of friends on the weekend. We would pack lunches and take off for points unknown. Of course we would have to bring a dime or two to call home and check in with our parents during the day. Sometimes we would call to beg for a ride home after having biked a good 20 miles away. (more…)

Condo developer rolls out the green lane for bikes

Thursday, April 30th, 2009

[Welcome to the first article in our new Bike Home section. Marion Rice, our family biking columnist, will be sharing her finds and tips about all things related to bike-friendly living spaces. She'll be on the hunt for the best backyard bike sheds, bike-friendly homes for sale, bike yard art, and other fun stuff. If you have tips or suggestions for Marion, get in touch at marion[at]bikeportland[dot]org. — Jonathan]


New resident Steve Gitchell and
developer Ted Watson.
(Photo: Dan Liu)

When Northwest Portland real estate developer Ted Watson embarked on a remodel of the Gallery Condominiums at NW 21st and Johnson, he knew bike amenities were a must.

“I know my market and I wanted to satisfy my market. I wanted to make it easy for my owners to get around,” he said. According to Ted, it was a “no-brainer” to make sure the plans included bike storage and other bike-friendly features.

Watson himself lives in West Linn. He drives most of the way into the city, but he prefers to bike between his various downtown projects to avoid the hassle of finding parking. (more…)

Biking with a bump (at 32 weeks)

Monday, April 27th, 2009

[Editor's note: The story below, written our Family Biking columnist Marion Rice, is a follow-up to a story we published on February 2nd. That story introduced you to Portlander Angela Koch and posed the question: Should you ride while pregnant?]

Angela Koch, 32 weeks pregnant,
pedals happily along SE Ash Street.
(Photos © Dan Liu)

Angela Koch is now 32 weeks pregnant, and she’s still biking around the streets of Portland with a smile on her face. Her belly is significantly bigger now than it was back in February when I first wrote about her, and she’s still doing great.

Sure, at the end of a long day she’s tired, and there are a few aches and pains (darn sciatica) — but nothing that keeps her off her bike. (more…)

Biking with a bump: Should you ride while pregnant?

Tuesday, February 3rd, 2009
Marion Rice and daughter Gleneden

[Publisher's note: This article is by our Family Biking columnist Marion Rice (bio). Marion previously wrote about how to deal with kids who don't want to go by bike. Today, she delves into the topic of biking while pregnant.]


(more…)

What to do when kids don’t want to go by bike

Friday, December 5th, 2008
Marion Rice and daughter Gleneden

[Editor's note: This article is by our Family Biking columnist Marion Rice. Marion previously wrote about how to keep kids warm and dry on the bike. Today, she offers up her tips and thoughts about what to do when your little ones don't feel like hopping on the bike (which is something that I bet happens to all families at one point or another).]


Sometimes my kids say they don’t want to go by bike.

“I also have to admit — I keep emergency chocolate in my Xtracyle bag.”

We do have a car and the mere presence of a motorized, temperature controlled cocoon creates the potential option for using it. I often wonder how other bike commuting parents deal with this and what they say to get their kids going when they don’t want to. (more…)

Riding with kids: Which bike set-ups work best? [Updated]

Tuesday, April 15th, 2008

[Note: This article was written by BikePortland.org's Carfree Families columnist Marion Rice.]

The Folz family (Allan, Carie and Cody) used their tandem/child-seat/trailer combo to participate in a bike move last summer.
(All photos © J. Maus)

(more…)

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