Friday, April 30, 2010

Expanding The Bike Valet

Last year Bike Jax joined the Riverside Arts Market (RAM) to provide a free bicycle valet service. RAM (if you are new to Jax or have been in a coma for the last year) is a weekly farmers and arts market held under the Fuller Warren Bridge (I-95) along the banks of the St. Johns River.

The idea was a simple one. By providing free bike parking we could get people to think of using their bikes as transportation without us having to prosthelytize our agenda. And if we could get people riding to RAM on a regular basis. Just maybe they would realize how easy it is to use a bike for their other transportational needs like work, school and shopping. Did it work? According to the feedback we have received from those that use the bike valet. I'd have to say it has worked way beyond anything we could have ever hoped for.

Year 2
We are now finishing up our seconded month of the seconded season of RAM and we have made a number of changes for this seasons RAM Bike Valet. The first change we made so far is to go car-free for transport of the valet station. We secured a place onsite to store the concrete filled buckets that make up our fencing anchors. We had needed a truck to haul those around last year. The rest of the setup fits easily on an extra-cycle equipped bike and at times a cargo trailer.

The next thing we have improved on is the addition of Regions Bank as the sponsor of the Bike Valet. This is a major improvement in that last year, all expenses had to come out our personal pockets since Bike Jax has no working budget. If you're not currently banking with Regions, might I show you something in green?

Another of other changes we have made this is season is the expansion of the size of the bike valet due to increased numbers. Our numbers are up 50% over the first season. Not only are more people riding to the Artist Market, they riding from greater distances. Below are maps showing the range of which people rode to RAM last year and so far this season on a consistent basis.

One Event At a Time
With the success of the bike valet at RAM we have hit a small snag. We are being inundated with requests to provide bike valet services at other city and public events. With only 2 of us currently carrying all the duties of the bike valet. It leaves us little time or ability to expand the bike valet and provide service to other events.

We need a pool of people willing to volunteer some of their time to help make Jacksonville a more bike friendly place to live. We would also like to find a couple people to become event coordinators. Duties will include working with event promotor and coordinating the volunteers. We also need a couple of people with a pickup or van that can be available to transport, setup and pack up the bike valet.

If you're interested in becoming a volunteer or leaning more. Email me at [email protected]

Friday, April 23, 2010

Bicyclist Injured in Ponte Vedra Hit-And-Run

It appears that this lady (Andrea Zampatti of Ga) went bat-shit crazy this morning while driving her Range Rover hitting one cyclist (condition unknown) and according to the Times-Union, "Witnesses told troopers the vehicle took aim at other cyclists and a scooter rider who ended up in a ditch."

When the police caught up with her, she pulled over, "And then she put it in reverse and plowed into the front of the patrol car." tells St. Johns County Sheriff's Public Information Officer Kevin Kelshaw. She then took the police on a high speed chase where she hit several other vehicles and objects along the roadway before she hit a truck head on.

I'm happy to learn that the cyclist was air lifted to Shands Hospital in Jacksonville where they're being treated for injuries that are not life-threatening.

I was also provided information this evening about the driver. I was given her Facebook which lists her website. She is apparently into the dishing out of pain. Her website is a t-shirt shirt company called 39X. Her site describes their clothing as, "Christian lifestyle clothing line catering to Christian athletes of all sports such as boxing, mma, surfing, basketball, skating, football and other sports. 39x was created to bring a wholesome yet stylish type of clothing to the world and represent the true meaning of love and dedication through Christ's ultimate sacrifice."

It goes on to explains the name of company; "Jesus in his last day was whipped 39 times. The lashings were brutal and painful. 39X is a reminder of that pain. He endured those lashings so that we may be saved."

Gotta love those christians that will make a buck off other christians by talking-the-talk, but don't walk-the-walk.

Read full story on Times-Uhion.

Friday, April 9, 2010

ZenCog Grand Opening Party

I hope you are making plans to join Bike Jax sponsor and just all around damn nice bike shop ZenCog Bicycle Company for their Grand Opening party this Sunday starting around noon.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Mayorial Candidate Blocks Riverwalk

What do you think would happen if a politician announcing their candidacy for mayor held their press conference in the middle of a major road? How do you think drivers would react to such an intrusion to their rush hour commute?

Today Jacksonville's General Counsel Rick Mullaney did just that. While not a major road, Mr. Mullaney seemed to have no issues with interrupting the commute of those that use the Riverwalk which is the busiest cycling and pedestrian path in Jacksonville. I being one those commuters, I was not happy about having to lug my loaded bike thru the landscaping alongside the riverwalk to get around the blockade and back onto the path. And with today be the first Wednesday of the month, traffic was even heavier than usual with the addition of people headed into Downtown for Art Walk.

This is a perfect example why Jacksonville was recently named one of the top 3 worst cycling cities. Our leaders and leaders-to-be either don't know or don't care about alternative transportation in this city.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Regions Banks Bicycle Give Away

Tomorrow and the first Saturday of the month throughout July at the Riverside Arts Market Regions Bank will be giving away a stylish Regions Cruiser and Helmet.

All you need for a chance at one of these bikes is to show up and drop your name in the hat during market hours (10 am - 4 pm) and that's it.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

That's Just How The Library Rolls

Anyone that knows me, has met me or even has read this blog for any length of time knows that I'm quick point out the flaws and problems with our city and it's leaders.

But one thing I think our city got right is the design of our new main library downtown. It is beautiful not only in it's design, but also it's functions. Add to that the influx of young bright and creative talent that cares not only about the library but also how the library interacts with the community. And you have what is (in my opinion) the one of the very few shining stars in the city of Jacksonville.

A couple of months ago the library started a whole new collection called the Zine Collection. Zines are usually self-published pamphlets and have been the underground reading material for the geeks, dweebs, hipsters and all-a-round general flunkies for the last couple of decades.

Not content with just starting the Zine Collection. Josh Jubinsky (Pictured above) and others of that young bright and creative talent mentioned above wanted to bring those Zines from the underground and into the light for the masses. How do they do that? Well, you load the Zines on to a modified trailer and bike to events like the Riverside Arts Market.

And that is how a library full of outstanding individuals rolls.