About Shannon Johnson (Family Biking Columnist)

Shannon Johnson (Family Biking Columnist)

Shannon is a 36-year-old mom of four (soon to be five!) who lives in downtown Hillsboro. Her column appears every Wednesday. Contact her via shannon4bikeportland@gmail.com

Shannon Johnson (Family Biking Columnist) Posts

Family Biking: Is bicycling a ‘liberal’ thing? (Should it be?)

Wednesday, September 15th, 2021

The author and her children in downtown Hillsboro.

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I never want to be a Suburban Soccer Mom

Wednesday, September 8th, 2021

Destination unknown.
(Photo: Daniel Lobo/Flickr)

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How I learned to quiet my demons and keep biking while pregnant

Wednesday, September 1st, 2021

Shannon Johnson, who’s due in December, with two of her kiddos. (Photo: Jacob Johnson)

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Family Biking Column: My modest resolution for a weekly bike adventure

Wednesday, August 25th, 2021

That look.
(Photos: Shannon Johnson)

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A family biking film for when it’s too hot to ride

Thursday, August 19th, 2021

Staying cool.
(Photo: Shannon Johnson)

This past week was a rough week to be the pregnant family biking columnist at BikePortland. Heck, it was a rough week to be a human being in Portland.

Like many Pacific Northwesterners, our home doesn’t have AC, so we just roast and try to figure out survival strategies. Cooling off with young kids is more difficult since the pandemic has shut down the majority of kid-friendly indoor spaces or forced them to close their air-conditioned play areas. We tried riding the bike a bit in the mornings at the beginning of the week, but by the end of it, I was actually making up excuses to drive our van around, just for the needed respite of cooler temperatures via car AC. I even went shopping, with four children, in actual stores, just to avoid sweating it out at home. We visited the library to cool off and volunteered to cook dinner at a friend’s house who had air conditioning.

Even with our best efforts to make the best of things, by the week’s end I was beat, hot, tired and even bored. I was too hot to do chores, to accomplish any projects, to exercise, to ride a bike, or lift a finger. At last I took a cold shower and began to fantasize about winter biking in drizzle, rain, and blustery cold.
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Voices from Dairy Creek Park: Listening to the houseless in Hillsboro

Thursday, August 5th, 2021

(Note: This is part two of Shannon’s story. We posted part one on Monday.)

Martin. A resident of Dairy Creek Park in Hillsboro.
(Photographed with permission by Shannon Johnson)

This post began with my scouting of a new park for our family to visit on our bikes. It resulted in me coming face-to-face with homelessness in Hillsboro. Which is a unique reason why I think biking is so valuable: it increases our intimacy with our own neighborhood and local community. Biking opens our eyes to what is right around us, but that we might otherwise (in a car) never see.

My original intention was to check out the bike route and amenities at Dairy Creek Park. But after reading reviews that warned about various encampment-related ills (such as trash, feces, and unwelcoming encounters with campers) I was encouraged to also scout out park cleanliness and safety. But even more importantly, I was prompted to take an active interest in the needs of the houseless community near me — because this can’t just be about me. Yes, I want a clean and safe park for my children to play in, but I also — far more importantly — want my fellow neighbors to have a clean and safe place to live.[Read more…]

Homeless campers and family biking fears

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2021

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Hello from Hillsboro, I’m your new Family Biking columnist!

Thursday, July 29th, 2021

Shannon and her kiddos at a park in Hillsboro.
(Photo courtesy Johnson family)

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