Just got the announcement and details about the second annual Tour de Ladd event. I attended this last year and it was excellent. Tons of schoolkids doing laps on carfree streets around the Ladd’s Addition neighborhood. What could be better?
The Tour de Ladd is put on by Abernethy School, which is located in the heart of one of Portland’s most bike-centric neighborhoods. The event is set up like the traditional walk-a-thons that many of you probably had at school when you were a kid. Parents and community members make pledges and money is raised based on the number of times they complete a 1/4 mile loop around the neighborhood.
According to Mia Birk, who volunteers at the event and has two kids enrolled at Abernethy, less than one-third of parents drive to the school and 100 out of 350 kids go by bike (either by themselves or with their parents). “Add walkers and bus riders, and traffic at the school is way down”.
Birk chalks up Abernethey’s success to the Safe Routes to Schools Program, parent leadership, and a very supportive principal.
Hundreds of kids are expected to participate and the money goes to the Abernethy Foundation which funds things like music and arts in the classroom (which unfortunately these days needs outside funding).
Why is Abernethy the only Portland school doing this? More schools should have bike-a-thons. It’s a great way to raise money, get kids on their bikes, and show them what it feels like to ride on their streets without fear of cars.
- 2nd Annual Abernethy Elementary “Tour de Ladd”
Wed., October 7th — riders begin at 9 AM and continue until at least 11:30 AM
Abernethy Elementary, 2421 SE Orange