One of the very best things to come out of this whole Coronavirus quarantine mess is riding every morning with the bike club I started for our neighborhood, the Shores of Lewis Center.
Literally the eve of our first day of distance learning, my head swimming with talk of social distancing and isolation, I sat up in bed about 3 am and thought “Hey – I’ll bet we could still ride bikes together!”
We knew that we’d have to stay 6-8 feet apart from neighbors and friends for the next month to… however long. But surely, I thought, we could ride bikes together?
So I sent a message out to our little community Facebook page to ask if others would be up for joining a neighborhood bike club that rides together at 10 am every day, 7 days a week, until the quarantine ends. It’s perfect for kids, parents, people who live alone, and anyone else who wants to come out.
The response was tremendous, and that’s how we got started. Our first ride was Monday, March 16 and we’ve ridden daily at 10 am, 7 days a week unless it’s raining, ever since. It gives us all something to look forward to. We vary the route daily so it’s never boring and keeps our interest up. We get fresh air, sunshine, exercise and a little social interaction – all while practicing safe social distancing.
Even neighbors who don’t ride with us have told us they appreciate our ride-bys in the mornings. They look forward to seeing our group ride through the neighborhood, and some have even come out to wave, smile, ring bells and applaud as we ride by.
We also got a 10TV news crew to come by and do a story on us in our first week of lockdown – it was a nice, positive angle on the quarantine situation. And yes, I’m the one who called them to tell them about our idea, because I just felt so proud of our neighborhood for embracing the bike club.
We’ve discovered parts of our neighborhood we never knew existed; learned how to ride from our house right to the Alum Creek State Park trails, nature center, beach and dam without having to travel on major roads; and we’ve gotten to know many neighbors we’d never have met without this club – especially in a quarantine.
I highly recommend you start a bike club in your own neighborhood before this lockdown ends. It’s a win for everyone involved!