All across the world this morning, students and parents alike skipped their morning routines of hopping into a car or jumping onto a bus and made their way to school by means of their own two feet, or on a bicycle.
International Walk to School Day, which has correlated each year since 2000 with International Walk to School Month is designed to help younger students get into the habit of healthy life styles early on. By using alternate means of transportation to school, students also learn about lowering fossil fuel consumption and promoting safe routes both to and from their schools.
Even though this day was meant for walking, the Bicycle Coalition along with Henry C. Lea Elementary School organized a bike-to-school ride for parents and students. For the group that gathered at Barkan Park at 50th and Spruce, most were already used to making the commute to school by bicycle.
Tim Emmett-Rardin along with his five-year-old son Gabe try to ride their bikes in the morning once or twice a week when the weather is nice.
“I think it’s a good idea. Some of us we try and do it as regularly as we can. I think it’s great to encourage kids to be out on their bikes and build it into the rhythm of their day,” Radin said.
Molly McGlone and her six-year-old son Silas bike almost every day of the year, for their morning commute as well as recreationally. She is also gearing up two younger children to hit the streets on bicycles once they’re old enough.
“I think it’s an important event to certainly raise awareness of walking and biking and using the resources we have. I think in previous years it’s been better attended and that was really cool to have that community feeling too,” McGlone said.
The riders rolled out shortly after 8 and arrived at Henry C. Lea Elementary at 47th and Locust just a few minutes later. It was there that Bicycle Coalition set up a table to hand out bracelets equipped with lights, bicycle pins, stickers, and temporary tattoos to the swarm of students who made it to school by other means.
A special thanks to Sara Weir from the AAA Mid-Atlantic Foundation for Safety and Education, who attended Lea’s Walk and Bike to School Day event and provided the great blinking light bracelets.
Indego bike share also participated in the ride, providing bike pens, stickers, and other cool swag items for kids.