Bike to School Day in Lawrence is May 4th!

Posted on: Apr 30, 2016

header-biketoschoolThe Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department encourages students to walk or bike to school May 4 in celebration of National Bike to School Day. Walking and bicycling to school enables children to incorporate the regular physical activity they need each day while also forming healthy habits that can last a lifetime.

The Health Department, in collaboration with the City of Lawrence, Lawrence Public Schools, the Lawrence-Douglas County Metropolitan Planning Organization and LiveWell Lawrence, is working to encourage families to walk or Qbike as part of “Be Active Safe Routes,” a community initiative to make it easier for people of all ages, ability, background and socioeconomic status to be more active.

Regular physical activity helps children build strong bones, muscles and joints, and it decreases the risk of chronic conditions like Type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure. “Physical inactivity is at crisis proportions in America. In the coming decade, preventable chronic conditions are expected to overtake tobacco as the leading cause of death in Kansas,” Health Promotion Specialist Michael Showalter said. “The research is clear that students who walk or bike to school will be healthier and perform better in school.”

Lawrence middle and elementary school students, families and staff plan to participate in Bike to School Day. Schools also will be hosting special events like park-and-rides and bicycle rodeos. Lawrence-Douglas County Health Board members, Lawrence school board members, city commissioners and firefighters have been invited to join in the activities throughout Lawrence. Helmets should be worn at all times when riding a bike. Bicyclists should ride safely by following the rules of the road and obeying traffic laws. Young children should be accompanied by an adult.

Benefits of walking or biking include:

• Students who walk or bike to school are healthier.

• Research has shown exercise before school helps children arrive focused and ready to learn.

• Students who walk and bike frequently when they are young are more likely to continue these activities into adulthood.

• When walking or biking, parents and children get an opportunity to bond and appreciate things they don’t notice while driving — listening to the sounds of the neighborhood, seeing friends and neighbors and feeling connected with their community.

• Fewer cars on the road means less traffic and congestion and cleaner air.

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Lawrence’s Annual Helmet Fair 4/9

Posted on: Apr 07, 2016

Pictured: Helmet Fair

The Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical Department will hold their annual Helmet Fair on Saturday, April 9 on the University of Kansas campus alongside the annual Spring Football scrimmage.  The event will be the parking lot just West of Memorial Stadium in Lot 58.  The event will run from 10:00 a.m. to Noon and is free to attend. Immediately following the Helmet Fair, the KU Spring Football Scrimmage will take place at 1:00 p.m. in Memorial Stadium.

At the event, public safety staff will be on hand to provide and custom-fit bike helmets for children age 15 and younger (with an adult, while supplies last).  Participants can have their bicycle inspected and take a ride on the Safe Ride Course.  Staff will provide information on bicycle safety tips, bike trail etiquette, booster seat safety and swimming safety.

The Hyvee Hawk Zone will be offered from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. featuring family-friendly inflatables.

The city’s Police and Fire-Medical Departments and Kansas University Public Safety are joining efforts to provide this event, along with several private and non-profit business partners including Kansas Athletics, Laird Noller, Safe Kids Douglas County, McDonalds, Sunflower Outdoor and Bike Shop, Douglas County Medical Society, Lawrence Mountain Bike Club, Dillons, Ranjbar Orthodontics, Jack Ellena Honda, State Farm Insurance, and Lawrence Pilot Club.

Contact the Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical Department at (785) 830-7000 for more information.

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Join the Bike Parade to Celebrate Earth Day!

Posted on: Mar 29, 2016

Grab your bike and helmet and join the Be Active Safe Routes team for the 16th annual Lawrence Earth Day Celebration Parade at 10:30 AM Saturday, April 23rd.

To be part of the Bike Parade, contact Health Promotion Specialist Michael Showalter at 785-856-5340 or mshowalter@ldchealth.org

EarthDayflier

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Seven Neat Books About Bicycling for Kids

Posted on: Mar 22, 2016

Below is a repost from Bicycle Times with 7 books for kids about bicycling.

Review: Seven bicycle-themed children’s books
Bicycle Times Magazine by Bicycle Times Magazine / March 15, 2016 8:25am

Words: Jeff Lockwood

This piece originally appeared in Dirt Rag Magazine in 2005. All of the books mentioned are still available.

We don’t watch much television in our house. In fact, by the time you read this, our daughter Kaya will be 2 years old [now 13!], and I can say with confidence that she’s probably watched a total of one hour of television since the day she was born. Instead of filling her head with the latest Disney tripe fed to us, she’s become very fond of books. We read to her before bed and throughout the day. While most children her age take dolls, stuffed animals or toys to bed, Kaya sleeps with books.

So recently, I went to Powells.com and took the plunge. I spent less than $100 on new and used books aimed at a variety of age groups and reading levels. As you’d expect, books aimed at children under 3 years old are mostly illustrated paperbacks with minimal words. And only a small subset of those is focused around a bicycle. Fortunately, I found books with some bright, exciting illustrations that caught the attention of Kaya. Some of the other books I purchased are aimed at a slightly older age group, and I also picked one book that’s a great resource for us parents. All prices listed are for new books.

Franklin Rides a BikeFranklin Rides a Bike
Author: Paulette Bourgeois
Illustrator: Brenda Clark
Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
22 page paperback; $5

Franklin is a sad little turtle because he still relies on training wheels while the rest of his friends zoom through the woods training-wheel-free. With practice, determination and encouragement from his mom, Franklin soon loses the training wheels. Bright illustrations and brief text make this a good book to read to toddlers.

A Bicycle for RosauraA Bicycle for Rosaura
Author: Daniel Barbot
Illustrator: Morella Fuenmayor
Publisher: Kane/Miller Book Publishers
24 page paperback; $6

Señora Amelia decides to buy a bicycle for her hen, Rosaura, as a birthday present. Furthering the high-end frame builder stereotype, an eccentric man measures Rosaura for the perfect custom fit. And, amazingly, he actually delivers the bike on time. The story is short and to the point, the illustrations are soft and pleasant, and the book is best read to younger children.

Bicycle BookBicycle Book
Author: Gail Gibbons
Publisher: Holiday House, Inc.
32 page hardcover; $17
Aimed toward roughly the third grade reading level, this book provides a wealth of bicycle information for young readers. Filled with large, descriptive and fun illustrations, this book quickly and painlessly presents children with the history of bicycles, basic functionality, types of bikes, uses, componentry, safety, simple bicycle care and fun facts.

Hello, Two-Wheeler!Hello, Two-Wheeler!
Author: Jane B. Mason
Illustrator: David Monteith
Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap
48 page paperback; $4
Short and simple sentences combined with exciting illustrations make this a good book designed for beginner-level readers. We follow a young boy frustrated that he’s still on training wheels. After deceiving his friends with excuses to get out of riding with them, he suddenly discovers that he can ride without the training wheels.

Go Fly A Bike!Go Fly A Bike!
Author: Bill Haduch
Illustrator: Chris Murphy
Publisher: Dutton Children’s Books
83 page hardcover; $17
The subtitle of this book is “The Ultimate Book About Bicycle Fun, Freedom and Science,” and that’s a very accurate description. You and your children are going to get all kinds of useful, fun and interesting information here. Small, whimsical black and white illustrations throughout the book work well with informative sidebars and entertaining quotes.

Life is Like a Ten-Speed BicycleLife is Like a Ten-Speed Bicycle
Author/Illustrator: Charles Shulz
Publisher: Collins Publishers
32 page hardcover; $6
Linus has always been the most philosophical personality in the Peanuts gang, so he got his own book. Though only one of these black and white strips mentions a bicycle, it’s still a fun book for kids of all ages. Linus’ quote that “Life is like a ten-speed bicycle—most of us have gears that we never use.” alone is worth the price of admission.

Bicycling With ChildrenBicycling With Children: A Complete How-To Guide
Author: Trudy E. Bell with Roxana K. Bell
Publisher: The Mountaineers
221 page paperback; $15
Every parent, no matter the skill level, should buy and carefully read this book. Bell and her young daughter (the co-author) explore every important topic relating to children and bicycles: proper bicycles, riding with a baby, tandems, safety, purchasing a bike, bicycle maintenance and riding with children with special needs. There is also an exhaustive list of great resources.

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Could You Be A Bike Friendly Business?

Posted on: Jan 26, 2016

Bicycle Friendly BusinessesDid you know there aren’t any League of American Bicyclists “Bicycle Friendly Business” in Lawrence. There may be a few that qualify already and don’t know they do.

Why would you want to consider this? Listen to what some people have said:

“By receiving the initial recognition, we were able to justify installing lockers and increasing our overall support of cycling in our workplace.”  —Chuck Krivanek, Human Resources Manager, InterContinental Hotels Group

“The designation [has given] us more influence in advocating for better bicycling infrastructure and benefits that we can ask from our company, the building managers, and local government. After we had gained our BFB designation, we were able to promote bicycling even more at a Chamber of Commerce breakfast topic.” —Michael Barreyro, Volunteer Bicycle Coordinator, SAP Labs – La Crosse

Becoming a BFB benefits your bottom line while also enhancing quality of life in your community. What can you gain by becoming bicycle friendly?

  • Recruitment: attract and retain the best and brightest
  • Increase morale and quality of life for employees
  • Foster a sense of community and camaraderie in workplace
  • Enhance health and wellness bene ts, and reduce costs on healthcare
  • Catalyze a more alert, active, productive workforce
  • Reduce absenteeism
  • Showcase social reponsibility, a commitment to sustainability and reducing environmental footprint
  • Support and expand reliable, consistent transportation, particularly for employees in urban areas
  • Create a culture of wellness
  • Cut transportation spending by company, individual and community
  • Support long-term health benefits, both physical and mental

Sound interesting?  Check out http://bikeleague.org/business

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