Bands, Bents Added to Santa Cruz NBG Fest, East Coast Fires Up

Discussion in 'Recumbent bicycles' started by Cycle America/N, Apr 7, 2003.

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  1. Our NBG National Mayors' Ride <>is rolling full steam
    ahead. Here is what happened last week:

    Automobiles are a picture of arrogance and wealth, With all its independence and carelessness.
    Woodrow Wilson

    A) Backsafer Folding Bent joins S&B Malibu at NBG Fest & On Line Raffle!!
    B) Jeff Reser Designs Andrew Heckman Fundraiser logo
    C) How the NBG will get more people on bikes
    D) Santa Cruz barn, warehouse or garage needed for storage of Outdoor Bike Church bikes & parts
    E) Haluzak promises sizzle at NBG Fest
    F) WPFI Puts us in the News!!
    G) "How to Become a Rider" Now on Line
    H) Ro Fischer introduces me to Normal Mayor
    I) Keen Kousins to play at NBG Fest
    J) 10-piece Houserockers express interest in playing NBG Fest
    K) Kern to pick up Parky (last year it was Andrew Morton!)
    L) Juice Cycle to be at NBG Earth Day booth
    M) Why recreational riders have to be more on guard
    N) 71 Year Old Car Free cyclist visits Santa Cruz
    O) Aerial Display Needed for Santa Cruz NBG Bike Fest
    P) Santa Cruz Coastal Trail back on the front burner Q Sea Otter Classic Bike Race Coming to
    Santa Cruz 4/10
    Q) Rider(s) Needed Now
    R) Poster Artist Wanted Now
    S) First Pocket Mail devices head out!
    T) Tire Size Confusion Addressed
    U) Why cars are so proliferous

    V) The first container of the long designed and redesigned (I've been coaching them for 9 years),
    Backsafer folding recumbents leaves Bombay, India next week as per this from Paul Lester, a
    Florida attorney, and one of the company's principals:

    Thought you'd like to know we will have our first 280 bikes in late May. They are made and will be
    shipped the latter part of next week from the factory. The one production bike we have is

    Made up of a well rounded team of bike riding businessmen, Backsafer is the product of a lawyer,
    chiropractor, seasoned bike mechanic and a professional marketing man. The seat on their bike, the
    true heart of any successful recumbent, was ergonomically designed by Logan Chiropractic College.
    Logan's computers are well known for the comfort levels they have attained for cars made by the
    people at General Motors. For these reasons it is a patented, one-of-a-kind design. And don't think
    all you're going to get is a great place to sit.

    Paul Lester, the man who put together the team that is making Backsafer a reality has been riding a
    long wheel based bent since 1987. And in the interest of performance, he rode several legs of the
    Paris-Brest-Paris on a Backsafer prototype with great power and joy.

    At last year's Fest we raffled off one of their prototypes. This year, come August 17, we'll be
    raffling off one of their production machines at our second annual event. And you can help us now by
    taking a chance on winning one at this site:

    In case you missed it, here is what we said about one of the other prizes it will join, there will
    be others, at the onset of March <>:

    S&B Recumbents is using this year's raffle to introduce their all new Malibu 2 recumbent. Speedy and
    ultra light light, it will be the flagship prize for this year's drawing. And you can even take a
    chance on winning this bike right from the comfort of your computer screen via this page:
    <>. And do bookmark this location
    as we add more exciting prizes to it in the months ahead.

    The reason this is even more important is that since we don't charge admission and the booth fees we
    collect barely pay just the insurance fee that is required of us, this is how we pay for the event.
    There is the expense for the park and all the associated permits, not to mention the cost of the
    sound system, the stage, security, the porta-potties, volunteer food and drink, the special bike
    parking area, signage, the children's play area, and etc, etc. Last year our raffle, put a pretty
    good dent in all of this, but we still find ourselves in significant debt. Since we now have the
    raffle on line, maybe you can help us throw a bigger amount at the monthly payments I am personally
    making right now. With a bank card or a credit card -- ** FOR AS LITTLE AS 5 BUX!! **

    W) Jeff Reser, the man with a heart the size of Iowa, is riding across Iowa from Chicago to Des
    Moines, with his brother Jason in less than two months time. And he is doing so to honor Andrew
    Heckman, the man whose story < > greatly moved
    the internet community last summer. Well besides sucking his gut to do the same relay leg Andrew
    tried to do last summer before he got hit by a car, Jeff also created a beautiful graphic image
    that he hopes will engender funds for Andrew's ever growing medical expenses. Before we dial in
    the mechanics of how we are going to run this fund raiser, you have got to take a look at Jeff's
    awe inspiring work:

    All I can say is WOW!!

    X) Heath Maddox, one of our local transportation engineers forwarded a powerful pro Greenway
    argument to the Santa Cruz Bikes mail list. Written by Richard Fries of "The Ride", self
    described as 'the magazine of East Coast Bike Culture'. at <>, this
    article does a great job of speaking to the tired, old guard idea that improved bicycle
    infrastructure does not grow cycling. So much so that I webbed it for inclusion at our National
    Bicycle Greenway site. Here is what it looks like before Jody Fitch works his magic on it for

    Y) If you are in Santa Cruz and a have a barn or a bit of warehouse space or a garage that has extra
    room to fit say a hundred bike frames and bike parts such as wheels and seats and bicycle gear
    trains, we need you!! We need to be able to announce that we are ready to accept such donations
    from the community (the indoor Bike Church <> and
    Goodwill already have donations they want to get to us) for the first annual Outdoor Bike Church
    that we'll be holding at our August 17 Santa Cruz NBG Bike Fest. Patterned after a long running
    event in Missoula MT called Free Cycles < >that yearly
    returns recycled bikes to the community, here is what we said about what we are calling the
    Outdoor Bike Church on 3/10 at

    {...} Missoula, through this day long event yearly returns 100 or more bicycles to the roads up
    their way. And what doesn't make it to the streets also finds new life as furniture, jewelry, even
    wind chimes etc. There are even the kids who make their own choppers and other experimental bikes.

    Nor is it complex or as highly dependent on new parts as I had before intimated. By designating one
    pile of bikes as buildable and the other as being for parts, with the help of roaming mechanics and
    as many as 15 bike stands, they are able to cannibalize the parts bikes for most of the stuff they
    need. About the only new items needed are oil and grease -- and these usually get donated!

    One important station that gets manned all day by rotating volunteers is the tire repair area. Here
    the ubiquitous flat tire is met with a bucket of water, tubes of glue, patches (oops another
    expense) and air pumps.{..}

    Z) Talked to the people at Bicycles by Haluzak last week and not only are they ramping up for the
    Santa Rosa to Napa leg for our Mayors' Ride that they
    are sponsoring on August 1, but Greg Hoffman tells me they are going to make a worthy splash at
    our Santa Cruz NBG Bike Fest on Aug 17. They even think they might have their long awaited long
    wheel base design ready for the market by then. I asked Greg about their Traverse, the world's
    first recumbent mountain bike, and he says they still plan to reintroduce that to the market
    place as well. Can that be the splash of which they speak?

    Z) The Western Pennsylvania Field Institute (WPFI), led by the hard charging Michael Sobkowiak, is
    turning the volume for our ride up again. And when these guys talk about something out there on
    the East Coast, people listen. Back in December, when they announced our ride, we had a flood of
    queries and pretty much filled up the DC to Pittsburgh relay link at that time. Over the three
    months that followed we have been busy building support for the remaining 23 (and counting)
    cities as well as engineering the systems that will enable us to more easily bring on new riders
    and their reports from the road. Here is the WPFI newsletter announcement:

    DC to Pittsburgh Ride ­ May 2 to 9 Riders needed for DC to Pittsburgh or Pittsburgh to Columbus
    cross-country relay event. Must be in good health and accustomed to distant ridingŠ We here at the
    Western Pennsylvania Field Institute are putting together Great Outdoors Week 2003 and one of the
    components of that week is to highlight the National Bicycle Greenways. The primary objectives and
    purposes of the National Bicycle Greenway (NBG) are to gather and coordinate the resources needed to
    create a nationwide network of interconnected car roads (that meet its standards for safety and
    efficacy) and bicycle pathways (multi-use with priority given to transportation). The NBG is again
    sponsoring their annual nation-wide relay ride which starts in Washington, D.C. and finishes in
    Santa Cruz, California.

    The riders (including WPFI¹s Denise Hill) will start in D.C. on May 2, heading out on the C&O Canal
    to the Great Allegheny Passage and into Pittsburgh on May 9th at 12:00 noon. After a small rally
    downtown, the next set of riders will head off to Columbus, Ohio and onward to California.

    To see a complete list of dates, background, more info, etc. please visit:

    We are currently looking for area riders to volunteer for the local portions of this relay ride, DC
    to Pittsburgh or Pittsburgh to Columbus. The application for riders is found at:
    <> rQuestionnaire.html. The
    screening process and coordinating of riders will be done by the enthusiastic and talented folks in

    Contact Michael Sobkowiak for more information at 412-255-0564.

    Z) As he directs the construction of, a site which will soon knock your
    sox off, Jody Fitch felt we needed to show prospective riders how they could go about joining us
    this soon next summer. Well, before Jody makes it look like it came from a professional design
    studio, here is what we have up now:

    Z) I got an incredible surprise when I opened up my Friday mailbox! Ro Fischer, the Senior Assistant
    to Mayor Tom Murphy in Pittsburgh, PA, copied me on a letter she sent to Chris Koos, the bike
    shop owner/mayor of Normal, IL:

    Dear Mayor Koos:

    My name is Rosemary Fischer and I am the Senior Assistant to Mayor Tom Murphy in Pittsburgh, PA. I'm
    sure your calendar (like most Mayors) is crowded but I wanted to tell you about this Mayors' Bike
    Relay Ride that is going from the East Coast to the West Coast, ending in Santa Cruz on August 17th
    at a huge national bicycle festival.

    The ride is the brainchild of a Martin Krieg of Santa Cruz.  Martin was a victim of a horrible
    accident when he was 24 years old, left in a coma for two months, paralyzed on his right side from
    brain damage and considered clinically dead. When he woke up 2 months later, he was fortunate to be
    able to undergo aggressive therapy and, within a few years, was able to walk again. Through his
    therapy (particularly on a stationery bicycle), Martin became an avid cyclist. As soon as he was
    able, he set out on a solo bicycling trip from the West Coast to prove to his family, his friends
    and, most importantly, to himself that he was whole again. He traveled across the country, sleeping
    in his tent and sampling Americana! Several years later, he was contacted by "head injury groups"
    that sponsored another trip cross country, this time with speaking engagements set up in many cities
    to victims of head injuries. When he returned to California this time, he wrote a book about his
    accident, recovery and two TransAmerica trips.  
    <> These trips were the inspiration
    for Martin to give birth to the National Bicycle Greenway (NBG) which is a non-profit lobbying for
    safe bike, running, skating trails in cities to be interconnected across the country from North to
    South - and from the East Coast to the West Coast.

    Pittsburgh was pleased to be part of the inaugural ride to visit Mayors all across the country to
    illustrate the need for safe interconnecting roads and trails. This year, the ride will begin in
    early May with Mayor Anthony Williams sending the first relay riders from Washington,
    Z.A. to Pittsburgh.  The Mayors in each of the cities on the route have been greeting the riders,
    presenting a proclamation in support of better and safer trails across the country and sending
    the next relay rider on his way.   In the event the Mayor is not available, a representative is
    usually present.   The riders are not soliciting funds.  It would be so wonderful if you could
    find time in your schedule during the last week of May to put Normal on the map!  It would be
    approximately 15-20 minutes on your schedule - but has had great media attention all across the
    country in every city it has reached. It's amazing how our Mayors all seem to be on the same
    page, as far as health and fitness is concerned. Mayor Murphy is a marathon runner, who also
    bicycles often. 

    Would it be possible for you to greet our relay team and present a proclamation to them as they
    cycle through Normal? Ideally, noon seems to be the best time when the lunch hour is in full swing.
    If you are busy at that time, the rider can be there at any time on that date convenient to your
    schedule. It was exciting to find that you have a Bike Business. We have had many bike clubs across
    the country join the ride for at least a portion of the route and then ride into the next town with
    the relay riders for the proclamation presentation. So, not only would we celebrate your City, but
    the local riders would become aware of the services your bike shop provides.  Your reception would
    be given a web page which is read by the 35,000+ bicycle club members and, at the Santa Cruz Bicycle
    Festival, all the Mayors who have participated will be acknowledged on stage and their proclamations
    read - and then posted for the thousands of visitors to read.

    Would you let me know if you will be able to find 15 minutes on your schedule during the last week
    of May - or, in the alternative, have a representative present your proclamation to the rider.
       Martin Krieg will soon be calling your office to answer any questions you may have. Thank you so
    much for taking the time to consider this and pedal safely................rosemary

    Here is my reply to Ro:

    Ro, this is incredible. I am so flattered that U took the time from your busy schedule to create
    this. I have our amazing web team on the cc and, in the interest of space, on the bcc, many of our
    sponsors and prospective sponsors, as well as other Mayor's Offices. This is so, not bcuz I am
    trying to boast, but bcuz I want for them to see how much of your gut U R also giving to our mission
    here!! And more importantly, you also do a far better job of explaining what we need and what will
    be taking place when our riders do arrive than I feel like I have been capable of (and heck, I'm
    supposed to be the writer here!).... <snip>

    Z) Here in our downtown over the weekend, I happened upon a couple of guys creating quite a
    sensation on a street corner. Armed with an upright bass and an acoustic guitar, Phil and Eric
    were having a blast. And the lively music they created had everyone tapping their feet. The only
    downside to the joy these guys were putting out there was the fact that there were no swing
    dancers around.

    And from what I saw of the show these guys put on, I only had time to to hear three tunes, these
    guys are going places. Handsome and personable, the execution with which they play off of each other
    is well choreographed and fun! On the spot, I asked them to play our Fest. And on the spot they said
    they were clear on Sundays and that I can count them in. Too exciting!! Called the Keen Kousins,
    here is a picture I shot of them:

    Z) News of our last year's Fest continues to reverberate far and wide. As the week began, I received
    yet another request for information from a band interested in playing it. I went to the web site
    they cited, listened to their music (it was tight and carried a far bigger sound than I expected)
    and I left it feeling bummed that we couldn't give this musical talent in particular anything
    more than a professional stage and sound system; that we couldn't pay them what they are worth.
    As I replied I was wishing inside that there was a band of this caliber that possessed a fraction
    of the fire I feel for cycling that would contact me.

    Well Paul Kent surprised me with his reply. He said he believed in or cause and that he might
    consider playing if he liked my answers to all of the particulars he had questions about. He wanted
    to know where it was, about the stage and sound, how long we would want them to play for and when
    and etc. At my first opportunity I replied and will let you know what I hear!

    Oh, the name of the band is the Silicon Valley Houserockers, all 10 pieces of them with a full brass
    section!! Their website: <>. To hear them on line, go to their media
    section. If you're in Santa Cruz, they play the Crow's Nest on May 17!


    Z) Longtime NBG supporter, Kern Trembath, of San Francisco (when we met him in 1999 he was a
    professor at Notre Dame in S. Bend, Indiana), of his own volition, reached out to Jim Wetherell
    (Parky) <>, our celebrity San Francisco Bay Area lead rider, to let
    him know he would pick him up from the Amtrak train station in Emeryville, CA. Wow. Last year,
    Kern helped Andrew Morton get around in Oakland and San Francisco and even put him up while he
    was still in the more northern part of the bay.

    Z) Woody Parker is going to be at our 4/27 Earth Day booth with his locally famous Juice Cycle
    <>. Woody's purpose for being there with this amazing machine is not to create
    the liquid refreshment that will result, but to announce that plans for building one of these
    bikes will soon be available. To show interested others how easy it is to build this stationary
    bike that squeezes vegetables as you pedal, Woody will even be building one at our booth as
    Mariella Stoellinga, Wes Anthony and Faye Saunders help visitors learn about the NBG and sample
    juice as they do!!

    Z) During the week, I took the time to answer nationally famous bike author Jim Langley
    <> who lives in Santa Cruz on our local Santa Cruz Bikes mail list about
    safety here on the local roads. In talking about the perils of riding them, he had posted a
    long list of bike accident victims, many he knew, as well as some of his own encounters with
    bike violence. Well because I know Jim, a powerful cyclist as well as a TransAm vet (he has
    done it all with biking), doesn't ride for transportation, I felt I had to issue a warning
    about recreational riding because that is what our relay cyclists will be doing this summer
    when they reach our relay cities. Even tho Jim rides with specific training goals in mind, I
    also wanted to make sure that anyone tuned in (especially newer cyclists) knew that riding for
    the sheer pleasure of it, riding without a purpose, especially in and amongst traffic is
    highly inadvisable. The following post is slightly modified to reflect additional posts that
    were then required:

    A lot of these cyclists, many of whom I also know, were on roads far away from those we discuss in
    here where actual road speed is far less. For most, if not all of the victims you mention, their
    rides were also recreational (although the term 'training ride' may seem to validate them
    otherwise, they were still recreational rides) where they must be all the more on guard (as I will
    discuss below) and not the kind of transportational cycling that seems to make up the bulk of Santa
    Cruz Bikes.

    Having biked across the US a couple of times, I know when I'm not on familiar turf as I pass thru
    other people's lands, that I must be careful that I'm seen as being in work mode even tho inside
    there is a huge smile on my heart. However I can manage it, I must look like most of the people I
    share the road with as they travel to, from or for their jobs. Almost as tho there is some kind of
    unspoken code of conduct, there is a different way I am forced to bike that must communicate
    respect. No stop sign running (not that I do) but complete very conspicuous stops. And if I take the
    lane, I try to *work* as hard as I can to keep up with the traffic or I just stay as far to the
    right as possible so as not to delay an advancing vehicle. Nor do I let myself look like I am
    enjoying myself too much (even tho I am), etc This was the m.o. that moved me safely thru Portland,
    Eugene, LA, Phoenix, El Paso, Austin, Houston, Alexandria, LA, Jackson, MS, Birmingham, Chatanooga,
    Lexington, Cincinnati, Columbus, Pittsburgh, NYC, Bridgeport, CT, Hartford, CT and Boston, etc...

    In the bigger game of life, because the Protestant work ethic runs so strong here in America, one is
    not seen as a legitimate human being unless he or she is working. Perhaps this is why the saying
    "Get a Job" is such an insult to many and why Bike-to-Work events confer such a large measure of
    dignity on the carefree, joyous (we're not supposed to have fun when we're working) act of cycling

    When I ride with a trailer, however I seem to get a slight break. Drivers seem to see me as paying
    my way and gave me the wider berth I need whether I'm on tour or here around town. Nor have I have
    ever heard of a loaded cycle tourist struggling to get up a mountain only to have cars give him or
    her a problem at a point in time when they are the most vulnerable.

    Many people in cars are envious of what we do, often because, for a variety of reasons, some valid,
    they cannot. And so when we flaunt this on what they think are their roads with the latest in flashy
    colors, skin tight apparel (a direct affront to those who are overweight) and state-of-the -art go
    fast machines, we are all the more vulnerable to the first loose canon among them. And this
    condition is all the more exacerbated when there are so many people on so few roads in such a small
    area like what we have here

    Here in town, because I am Car Free and ride for transportation, I only encounter hostile drivers
    when I forget that we are just trying to help each other get to wherever it is that we are going....

    Z) Arthur, last name unknown, rolled into Santa Cruz last week. A man with a formidable presence he
    was standing by his bike near a downtown coffee shop. I remarked that I liked his bike whereupon
    he went on to tell me that it replaced the one that he recently used to bike north to south from
    Washington to San Diego and then Arizona to Idaho. When he told me he was 71, I turned my
    listening up. With a body that was hard and strong, he explained to me that he had been Car Free
    almost all of his adult life. While also technically homeless, he told me how the road had made
    him self reliant. I nodded in agreement when he told me he had to fix his own head and his own
    body. That he had to rely on himself for an understanding of the best routes to take and that he
    had to call upon a 6th sense to know who to to talk to and when to get his needs met. In the
    short time we exchanged words, he also said the road taught him the importance of simplicity. And
    this included his diet. He extolled the virtue of a diet of rice and beans and vegetables

    I want to be as fit as Arthur when I'm 71. Here's a photo I took of him:

    Z) Because San Lorenzo Park is covered in trees, we need a way to let people know we're there come
    August 17. Does anyone have ideas here for how can float some kind of sign for this? We need a
    way to remind those locals who may have forgotten as well as show those trying to find us where
    we are at. From time to time in my travels, I'll see brightly colored giant balloons that tell of
    fun being had somewhere in the area beyond. Can these be rented? Would this be something we can
    look to a radio station for?

    Z) People in Santa Cruz are talking about the Coastal Rail Trail again! As per this article in the
    Santa Cruz Sentinel
    ocal.htm the Santa Cruz County Transportation Commission (SCCRTC) plans to draft a request for 11
    million dollars in new Clean Air Act money to buy the corridor. With the only provision being
    that a coastal trolley also be included. This is great news because it was the Coastal Trolley
    that had our neighboring city, Capitola and its city councilman Dennis Norton, pushing hard for a
    rail trail. But when the SCCRTC voted any kind of passenger rail out of the equation, we lost
    Capitola's energy for this connection. With the trolley effectively OK'ed by the commission by
    going after this new source of funds, the reality of a Santa Cruz to the Pajaro River pathway is
    becoming more and more immediate! What's also exciting about this is that People Power, our local
    bike advocacy group is making this a number one priority

    Z) Mark your calendars Santa Cruz cyclists, the Sea Otter Classic is bringing all small part of its
    show to our town. Thursday April 10 will find bike racers circling the roads of Lighthouse
    Field. The huge bike celebration at Laugna Seca, outside of Monterey, that this criterium is a
    part of, continues (from TH 4/9) thru Sunday 4/13.


    Z) If you are interested in riding any of the links at
    the more the merrier. You should be in excellent health, self-reliant, and have some previous
    bicycle touring experience. If what we are saying at our FAQ

    The Mayors' Ride is a fully self supported ride made by a relay rider(s) (at least one and never
    more than 10) who determines his own routing, as well as provides for his own lodging needs whether
    the choice be hotels or camping. Departure dates are suggested as well as flexible. Arrival dates
    are firm as per the schedule.

    We suggest that you use the email addresses found at the schedule for the link you are interested in
    to determine how you might like to work together in all of this!

    resonates for you, please take the time to fill visit our new page, "How to Become a Rider"

    Z) Toward the end of promoting the work of other artists, is there anyone out there who would like
    to create a poster for our Santa Cruz NBG Bike Fest? You can build it around the amazing logo
    <>that Fred Piper created for us last year. Or you
    can create your own and expand from that. We need this in just two months time so we can get it
    out on the streets! Contact me with your interest at [email protected]

    Z) The first set of Pocket Mail devices are scheduled to out to one lead rider per group this week!

    Z) Confused about tire sizes? Decimal vs Fractional? Bead Seats? Tire Widths? What tire fits what
    rim? French sizes? Sheldon Brown endeavors to answer these questions at his Harris Cyclery site.

    Z) In 1900 there were 8,000 cars and 10 miles of concrete roads. In 1908 a Ford cost $825. In 1914,
    a Ford car cost $295 The Century, America's Time ABC News

    To see the other exciting Mayors' Ride & Fest News, go to:

    MARTIN KRIEG: "Awake Again" Author c/o 79 & 86 TransAms, nonprofit Nat. Bicycle
    Greenway CEO Ever wanted anything so bad U were willing to die for it? Really die? By moving thru
    clinical death and reversing paralysis, *I saw God* when I answered that question.

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