As part of the Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition’s 2009 Bike Week, the portion of State Street between Canon Perdido and Ortega streets was closed off Wednesday morning as bicycle commuters gathered for breakfast, a raffle, and camaraderie with other riders. With valet bike parking, a street-side bicycle mechanic checking peoples’ brakes and gear shifters, and light refreshments, a fairly eclectic array of pedal-pushers showed up to join in the fun. City Councilmember Das Williams, wearing a tweed jacket and a bicycle helmet, chatted with passersby as David Pritchett handed out campaign fliers for his run for Santa Barbara’s City Council.
Local organizations such as the Community Environmental Council, the Bicycle Coalition, and the Santa Barbara County Association of Governments’ Traffic Solutions had booths set up offering resources for people who wish to use alternative methods of transportation on a more regular basis. A Traffic Solutions representative signed up quite a few people for the Commuter Challenge, a program that offers prizes for teams of commuters who park their cars and bike, bus, or carpool to work. The raffle offered prizes such as bike locks, bells, and other gadgets, and this reporter won a pair of reflective leg straps for those dark nights when automobiles rule the streets with their sheer size and superior lighting capabilities.
Many more events, including group rides, will be held throughout the week. For more information, visit the Bike Coalition’s Bike Week calendar.