Most discussions around this topic center on the need for infrastructure equity and access to safe streets for all. But what about access to the gear and products that can make the act of pedaling a bike more feasible and comfortable?
Portland’s Community Cycling Center (celebrating their 25th anniversary this year!) is dedicated to making cycling accessible to everyone. I recently learned they have Low Income Commuter Discount program at their bike shop on Alberta Street and asked Executive Director Kasandra Griffin to share more about it. [Read more…]
Here’s the lowdown, straight from CCC staffer Yashar Vasef:
Transportation Trivia is back! This Wednesday evening (September 5th), the Community Cycling Center and Oregon Walks are teaming up for the seventh annual benefit trivia event. Hosted at the Lagunitas brewing event space at Broadway and NE 3rd, your $20 admission covers dinner catered by Hale Pele, beer or wine, and three rounds of fun, competitive trivia covering an array of transportation topics. Proceeds benefit the Community Cycling Center and Oregon Walks! [Read more…]
Well-known northeast Portland neighborhood organizer and nonprofit leader Craig Fondren has been hired as the Community Programs Manager at the Community Cycling Center.
Fondren was formerly executive director of the Sabin Community Development Corporation (CDC), a group that works to make housing more affordable for people of color and people with lower incomes. In 2011, Fondren was named Newsmaker of the Year by the Royal Rosarians for his work in bringing free technology and training to northeast Portland residents.
Here’s more from a CCC press release:
Mr. Fondren’s primary initial work will be leading the Community Cycling Center’s programs in the New Columbia / Portsmouth neighborhood of North Portland… Mr. Fondren will also be working with the parents, staff, and community at Cesar Chavez and Rosa Parks schools (both in Portsmouth) through our “Community Based Safe Routes to School” initiative. In the longer term, Mr. Fondren will work with the team at the Cycling Center to identify other needs and opportunities for Community Programs.
(Photo of last year’s march courtesy March for Science PDX)
Thousands are expected to turn out this Saturday, April 14th, at Pioneer Courthouse Square beginning at 10am for the Portland March for Science. This year’s rally and march has been organized by an all-volunteer crew in support of scientific inquiry, science-informed policymaking, and access for all to science education. Last year, over 15,000 people joined Portland’s March for Science as a direct action in protest of President Trump’s proposed cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Institutes of Health (NIH).
The science of cycling has been guaranteed a place on the mainstage this year. Andrea Chiotti, Education Coordinator with the Community Cycling Center and its STEM Bicycle Mechanics program, and Rex Burkholder, co-founder of the organization now known as The Street Trust and a former Metro Councilor, will both be speaking about science in our lives, our region’s policies, and our schools.
We asked Rex and Andrea to share a few thoughts about the March for Science… [Read more…]
Community Cycling Center staffers Lindy Walsh (L), Athena and Yashar Vasef model Velotines cards. (Photos: Community Cycling Center)
When is the last time you sent someone a hand-written note? Maybe doing that more often was one of your new year’s resolutions that needs a nudge?
For the second year in a row the Community Cycling Center will set up a letter courier system in their retail bike shop on Northeast Alberta to commemorate St. Velotine’s Day — which they call, “an emerging tradition celebrating all-analog affection.” For one day the CCC will buck the growing digitization of our lives and encourage people to send hand-written notes to one another in a bid to boost positive community spirit.
Here’s more from the CCC:
Instead of jotting a quick email thanking a friend or coworker, imagine having that note manually typed on a mid-century Olympia typewriter, then couriered by bike within Portland city limits to surprise and delight its recipient on February 14th. That is precisely what Cycling Center staff and volunteers intend to do for hundreds of messages.
From now through February 14th (which is traditionally Valentine’s Day, if you haven’t realized yet), anyone can stop into the CCC Bike Shop (1700 NE Alberta) and order a velotine for a $10 suggested donation. Once typed up and sealed with a kiss, it will be queued for bike delivery on Valentine’s Day.
This would be a great way to tell your friends and special someones that you appreciate them!
A documentary based on the East Los Angeles-based activist group known as the Ovarian Psycos will be shown in Portland this Sunday night as a benefit for the Community Cycling Center.
The “OVAS” as they’re often known — which stands for Overthrowing Vendidxs (vendidos, or sell-outs), Authority, and the State — began in 2010. They define their politics and activism as having, “feminist ideals with indigena understanding and an urban/hood mentality!” Using bicycles as a tool for power and organizing, the Ovas annual rides include the Black Mass (“Resistance on Two Wheels”), Clitoral Mass, protests against gentrification, and more. Beyond riding, they empower and inspire young womxn of color to become community leaders.
“We are connecting dots,” they write on their website, “becoming aware of community agencies, spaces and movimientos in an effort to solidify our local networks making everything and everyone more accessible for and to each other.” [Read more…]
“It is a big, beautiful idea, and I can’t stop smiling.” — Kasandra Griffin, executive director of the Community Cycling Center
On Sunday, December 3rd, the Community Cycling Center celebrated 22 years of the Holiday Bike Drive, a program that has provided over 10,000 bicycles to children from families living on lower incomes since 1995. The 22nd annual Holiday Bike Drive was a heartwarming delight of over 400 children finding and riding their first bicycle. Rep. Earl Blumenauer and Sen. Ron Wyden joined in to celebrate bikes, kids, volunteerism and community..
“To many, the Holiday Bike Drive looks like the day in which over 400 children get a bike,” said Kasandra Griffin, Executive Director of the Community Cycling Center. “But for me, the Holiday Bike Drive looks like the first day of a lifelong relationship with bicycles for over 400 children. It is a big, beautiful idea, and I can’t stop smiling.” [Read more…]
Samantha Taylor learned how to ride a bike when she was a kid, but cycling didn’t become a part of her life until last August, when she saw the job opening for Development Manager at the Community Cycling Center. She lives in the New Columbia neighborhood near The Hub and, in her own words, “put two and two together and realized that the Cycling Center was behind The Hub.”
“Cycling was never a mode of transportation for me before,” Taylor said. “When I learned more about trimodal transportation and transportation equity at the Cycling Center, I became a lot more interested in cycling not just as recreation but also transportation.”
Working at a nonprofit replete with bicycle access doesn’t magically remove all barriers to cycling, however. Cost and adaptive needs can still prevent cycling from being a convenient choice.
The northeast Portland-based nonprofit that believes bicycles are a vehicle for changing our communities has hired a new leader. The Community Cycling Center announced yesterday that Kasandra Griffin is their next executive director.
Griffin is known quantity in local bike advocacy circles. She spent eight years (on and off) on the Board of Directors for The Street Trust and also served as their interim executive director for five months in 2002 and as their finance director from 2003 to 2005. She has also worked at the City of Portland’s parks bureau and most recently as policy manager at Upstream Public Health, a nonprofit.