Hop on your bicycle and join thousands of other Whatcom County residents participating in the 16th annual Bike to Work and School Day the morning of Friday, May 17 - especially if you're a newbie rider.
"My goal is for people who don't consider themselves bicyclists to try it on Friday," organizer Mary Anderson said, adding that she hoped riders would "meet some other bicyclists and friendly people and have fun."
"Hopefully, they enjoy it and will continue to ride their bikes," said Anderson, who is the event coordinator for Everybody Bike.
The event will be 6:30 to 9:30 a.m. Friday. Make sure to roll into a number of "celebration stations" sprinkled around Whatcom County for some cheer and goodies.
"We have about 60 celebration stations," Anderson said. "About half are open to the public and about half are at the schools."
Treats and small prizes for participants will be at the stations, including biking gear and gift certificates for massages, coffee shops and restaurants. People also can participate in a prize drawing. At least 50 businesses donated items.
"It's a great event that's supported by the community," Anderson said, "and much loved by the businesses as well as participants."
A map of the public celebration stations is online at biketoworkandschoolday.org.
Riders can remember their morning commute with a free photo through Portraits á Gogo, a portable photo booth company.
"They pull their photo booths by bike, which is pretty awesome to see," Anderson said.
Portraits á Gogo will be in Bellingham at the Public Market, Cornwall Avenue and York Street, from 7 to 8 a.m., and then at Hub Community Bike Shop at 8:30 a.m. The Hub is at 9031/2 N. State St., with access also from South Bay Trail.
Later in the day, Bike to Work and School Day continues with tricycle relay and slow bike races at noon at Bellingham City Hall.
Starting at 5 p.m., Chuckanut Brewery and Kitchen, 601 W. Holly St., will host a family-friendly after-bike party.
About 10,400 people participated in the event last year.
More information about the 16th annual Bike to Work and School Day in Whatcom County, plus safety gear and tips for bicycling, are online at biketoworkandschoolday.org and everybodybike.com.
What: Tricycle Relay Race and Slow Bike Race.
When: Noon Friday, May 17.
Where: Bellingham City Hall, 210 Lottie St.
Registration: Sign up by Wednesday, May 15, in the classic or high-performance division for tricycles by calling Kim Brown, 360-778-7950, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reach KIE RELYEA at email@example.com or call 715-2234.