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Spreading the joy

I am blessed to have the opportunity to ride my bicycle just about every day. On relatively safe roads. And on trails that forever display the scenic beauty of the great state of Maine. From reading my blog, one can fully grasp an understanding of my passion for two-wheeled machines and the freedom they provide in such a simple way.


Recently, I've taken it upon myself to help spread this joy of cycling. It is being accomplished by getting involved on two fronts.


Firstly, I've become a Community Spoke. It is a program that serves as the Bicycle Coalition of Maine’s statewide network of bicycle and pedestrian advocates. It empowers residents to become champions — Community Spokes — for better biking and walking in their cities and towns.


So who are Community Spokes?

— People who believe biking and walking bring economic, health, environmental, and transportation benefits to individuals, communities, and the state.

— People or organizations who want to get involved in making their community more bike/pedestrian-friendly.


And what do Community Spokes do?

— Provide a voice for bicycle and pedestrian interests at public meetings and events.

— Learn from and support their fellow Spokes around the state.

— Work with neighbors and decision-makers to promote bike/pedestrian infrastructure, policies, and programs.


I've actually been a member of the bike/pedestrian committee in my hometown of Hallowell for years. But we never meet, so I took the two-session Community Spoke training as an avenue to personally get things rolling.


My second "call to action" deals directly with bicycles. While I'm extremely fortunate to have eight bikes in my basement, there are countless others who cannot even afford to have one. In a small way, I wanted to fix that situation — so I purchased another bike. Not for me, mind you, but for someone else. A donation that I hope changes a life.


For $165, I bought a Buffalo Bicycle through the World Bicycle Relief organization, based in Chicago, Illinois. Since its founding in 2005, donations made through the nonprofit have helped to provide more than 752,000 bicycles to students, health care workers, and entrepreneurs in 21 countries around the world.


And what's really neat is that Trek Bicycle matched my amount, so one freedom machine becomes two.


Besides my devotion to my wife and family, bicycles have and always will be a big part of my life. So I believe it's important to walk the walk and talk the talk on matters that help define who I am as a person. And as I stated earlier, to help spread the joy of cycling to other individuals. Stay safe!


The exact location where I reached 7,000 miles for the year on Tuesday of this week.

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