About Marion Rice


Marion Rice has been producing educational media since 1993. She has been the Executive Producer of a number of web sites for PBS.org including The PBS Parents Guide To Talking With Kids About War and Violence, History Detectives and The New Heroes. Most recently she was the Co-Executive Producer of a web site for parents to help them support their children’s emergent literacy from birth to age 5.

Marion Rice started writing the Family Biking column for BikePortland in 2008. She is interested in developing stories that are relevant to families on all parts of the car free/ car light continuum. In addition to writing, Marion helps the BikePortland team with her experience in fund-raising and corporate development. If you have a story idea or would just like to get in touch, you can reach her at (503) 708-0707 or at marion[at]bikeportland.org.

Marion Rice Posts

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. [Read more…]

Work pants made for women work great on the bike

Wednesday, October 14th, 2009
cycling workpants

Marion Rice and her new work pants in action.
(Photo © Elly Blue)

So, I just have to dish about my new pants. Red Ants Pants are work pants shaped for a woman. Designed by outdoorsy gal Sarah Calhoun, who lives in a ranching town of White Sulphur Springs, Montana, these pants are made for women who ranch, garden, fight fires and do the hard work of being a mom.

From the moment I put these sturdy pants on, I knew that I had found a new friend. Although I don’t plan on vaccinating any cattle in mine, they are PERFECT for biking my kids around Portland in the fall and winter. They have two layers which helped keep me more dry and warm as I rode around in the rain all morning.

cycling workpants

But what makes these pants really awesome is the gusseted crotch. Ahem, if you wear your Levis to bike in you probably have encountered that gnarly lump of fabric down there. Well these pants don’t have that. A diamond shaped piece of fabric replaces the four way cross junction which you find in most pants.

The pants come in two cuts, curvy and straight. My husband liked the way they fit so much he just ordered a straight-style pair for himself.

Learn more at RedAntsPants.com.

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)

[Read more…]

Carrying your infant by bike: How young is too young?

Monday, August 24th, 2009
Kidical Mass!-22.jpg

A baby seat in a bakfiets is not
a rare sight in Portland.
(Photos © J. Maus)

A reader contacted us with a dilemma — she is about to have her first child, she doesn’t own a car, and she travels primarily by bike. In preparing for her new life as a parent, she had some questions.

Is it safe to ride with a newborn? Is it legal? Are there important age benchmarks she should know about? She was particularly concerned about the impact of vibration on a child’s brain development. [Read 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. [Read 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.[Read 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. [Read 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.]

[Read 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. [Read more…]

Keeping kids warm and dry on the bike

Thursday, October 30th, 2008

Marion Rice and daughter Gleneden

This article was written by our Family Biking columnist Marion Rice. For previous articles in this series, and for links to other articles and photos on family biking, check out the Family Biking Page.

[Read more…]