Thursday, July 15, 2021

July 2021: The Farmers on the Pike

Celebrate the best of summer: parks & farmers markets! We ride again, live & in person, this Sunday, July 18. 

We'll meet up at the super fun Penrose Park at 10am. (There are no bathrooms at the park, so plan accordingly). We will roll out around 10:15am - meeting near S Wayne Street. Our route will stick to neighborhood streets, clocking in around 3.1 miles. We'll cross the major streets at lights.

We'll end at the Columbia Pike Farmers Market at Walter Reed & Columbia Pike (about 10:45-11am), where folks are welcome to enjoy the local produce & products.  Many vendors allow for and encourage advanced ordering - click above for more information. Bring a lock if you're planning to leave your bike as you shop or if you want to enjoy a nearby restaurant (which is also strongly encouraged).  

Everyone is welcome on our rides (as long as kids come with an adult), which are appropriate for all types of bikes. We often have kids on their adults' bikes or younger kids who are newer to riding on their own.  Older kids may find the ride to be slow & not very exciting, but are welcome to join the party as long as they're willing to enjoy the pace.

Masks: We recognize that data shows outdoor transmission is very rare, bikes naturally keep people appropriately distanced, and masks can be hard for some to deal with while they're biking. We also recognize kids aren't yet vaccinated. Therefore, we ask that everyone bring a mask and wear it when you're off the bike and in close contact to others.

When: Sunday, July 18
Meet: 10am - Penrose Park (6th St S & S Wayne) - roll out 10:15am
Parking: Neighborhood streets
Route
https://ridewithgps.com/routes/36792539



To get back to the start, families can ride on Walter Reed or its sidewalk up to 9th, then take neighborhood streets, for a total ride of 2/3 mile. 

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

June 2021: Dads get donuts 6/20 10:30am Mosaic Park

It's June, which means it's hot & it's Father's Day.  We'll celebrate Dads & Dudes & Father figures of all stripes with a ride to DONUTS (donuts not included - we're not a real organization and we have no budget).  

We'll meet up at the super cool Mosaic Park in Ballston at 10:30am. In fact, this park is so cool, you may want to come early to play & enjoy the interactive water feature (but there are no bathrooms at the park, so plan accordingly). We will roll out around 10:45am - meeting at the bike racks off of N Pollard St. Our route will stick to neighborhood streets, clocking in around 2.5 miles. We'll cross the major streets at lights.


We'll end at Ballston Quarter (about 11:15-30am), where folks are welcome to grab a donut at District Donut or any other of the yummy goodies in the food court or the other great restaurants.  Bring a lock if you're planning to head into Ballston Quarter.  


Everyone is welcome on our rides (as long as kids come with an adult), which are appropriate for all types of bikes. We often have kids on their adults' bikes or younger kids who are newer to riding on their own.  Older kids may find the ride to be slow & not very exciting, but are welcome to join the party as long as they're willing to enjoy the pace.

Masks: We recognize that data shows outdoor transmission is very rare, bikes naturally keep people appropriately distanced, and masks can be hard for some to deal with while they're biking. We also recognize kids aren't yet vaccinated. Therefore, we ask that everyone bring a mask and wear it when you're off the bike and in close contact to others.

When: Sunday, June 20
Meet: 10:30am - Mosaic Park (5th St N & N Pollard St) - roll out 10:45am
Parking: Neighborhood streets
Route
https://ridewithgps.com/routes/36437685 



To get back to the start, it's an easy 1/2 mile on neighborhood streets. (Go back to 9th Street, then take it east to Pollard St, turn right and you'll be at the park in a blocks).


Sunday, May 16, 2021

We're back! May 2021 Live, In-person Ride!

What a long strange trip it's been!  We've missed in-person rides with other families during the pandemic, but with vaccinations progressing, data showing safety outdoors, and new cases decreasing, we're comfortable coming back together for an in person bike ride!

To celebrate Bike Month, we will meet at Lacey Woods Park in Arlington and make our way to the brand new TRAFFIC GARDEN at Arlington Traditional School. Our route will use Arlington's trails and neighborhood streets, and will have only small, not steep hills, crossing major streets at lights. The planned route is about 3.25 miles, but we can cut out that little loop and get it under 3 miles if folks are getting antsy.

We'll meet at 4:30pm, but will let the kids play a bit (and leave time for people who might be a bit delayed) and will roll out no earlier than 4:45pm.  The route will take us 30-45 minutes, putting us at ATS around 5:30pm. We encourage people to stay and enjoy the traffic garden at ATS.  There are also many great restaurants just a block from the school (Pupatella, Panda Cafe, something with arches), for those who want to grab food and enjoy a picnic at ATS. 

Everyone is welcome on our rides (as long as kids come with an adult), which are appropriate for all types of bikes. We often have kids on their adults' bikes or younger kids who are newer to riding on their own.  Older kids may find the ride to be slow & not very exciting, but are welcome to join the party as long as they're willing to enjoy the pace.

Masks: We want everyone to feel welcome and we recognize that all children and even many adults are not yet fully vaccinated. We also recognize that data shows outdoor transmission is very rare, bikes naturally keep people appropriately distanced, and masks can be hard for some to deal with while they're biking. Therefore, we ask that everyone wear masks while we're off the bike, but it's up to you whether you wear a mask while we're riding.

When: Sunday, May 23
Meet: 4:30pm - Lacy Woods Park (12th St N & N Frederick St) - roll out 4:45pm
Parking: Neighborhood streets
Routehttps://ridewithgps.com/routes/35859671

To get back to the start, you can use either George Mason (1/2 mile) or Harrison Street (3/4 mile) to connect back to Lacey Woods Park.


Thursday, December 17, 2020

Kidical Holiday Lights Ride - Tips for riding with your family!


 WISHING YOU HAPPY HOLIDAYS, 2020 STYLE

Throughout the years, some of our favorite rides have been holiday lights rides - throwing on lights and reflective gear and joining our friends to enjoy the festive lights around Arlington, while sneaking in a bike ride.  Due to the pandemic, we can only be together in spirit, but we've included some tips and tricks for you to lead your own family's holiday lights ride.  And, as a gift to this wonderful community, we've scouted out lights throughout Arlington, and suggested some family-friendly routes to enjoy them.

What to Prep

  1. Plan your route: look for quiet neighborhood streets, cross major streets at lights, avoid steep hills! Some resources to help you find good routes:

    • Kidical Mass Arlington's holiday lights route suggestions, our gift to you (see below). 
    • NextDoor has a "Holiday Cheer" map, showing crowd-sourced light displays
    • Many of these maps identify the really big displays, but riding around neighborhoods with holiday lights twinkling is magical, even if you don't see "the big 'uns".  
    • Bike Arlington's comfort map shows which routes are the more comfortable (look for the green ones) and indicates the steepest hills (stay away from those arrows!)
    • Google maps has bike directions, and will show an estimate of the hills (make sure you choose "bike directions" and look on the left, under where the route option summaries are)

  2. Check the weather - though be flexible because sometimes, even Capital Weather Gang gets it wrong

  3. Prep your lights, for your bikes - make sure they are charged and ready to go! Depending on your route, think about both lights to see the road/trail ahead of you *and* lights to be seen by drivers. REI has tips on lights.

What to Bring

  • Lights & reflective gear 

  • Clothes for weather - layers are the best (see this guide from WABA)

  • Gloves - make sure you can brake and change gears while wearing them!

  • Keep your face & neck warm - neck gaiters & balaclavas are great.  Make sure you can turn your head and see to your side, whatever you wear

  • Smart phone & power - a smart phone can give your directions if you get lost, can "phone a friend" if you need help and can even be a light in a pinch, but only if it has power!

  • Helmet & mask - because you need that brain and it's still 2020

  • REI has a list of safety tips to review

Make it festive!

Bring music, hats and other holiday bling

Make some hot chocolate! Either bring it with you and plan a stop to enjoy it (2/3rds of the way through is best) or have it warm when you get home.

Pre-ride safety

         Give yourselves extra time before you need to leave to run through some pre-ride safety:

      ABC Quick Check your bikes - before you set out make sure:

  • Air in the tires
  • Brake are working
  • Chain (and the drivechain) are working 

Talk to your group about rules of the road:

  • Stay to the right, but don’t weave around parked cars (drivers will have a hard time seeing you)
  • Kids stay to the right of adults
  • Talk to each other as you ride 
    • Turning right/left
    • Stopping
    • Car up/back
  • Stop at stop signs and red lights
  • Pull over to gawk at lights, and look before pulling out again
  • Discuss the "what ifs" -- what to do if you get separated, if you need to stop, etc.

Your friends at Kidical Mass Arlington have plotted some of locations with the most holiday cheer in Arlington and created a map with some route suggestions.  The routes generally connect to each other.  Some notes:
  1. The locations with lots of lights/inflatables are marked with red markers, but there are plenty of other lights to enjoy along the way. 
  2. There are two neighborhoods where are the streets are good for family riding, and it would be nice just to wind around -- those are marked with green & grey rectangles.
  3. The blue lines are suggested routes, but ride at your own risk.
  4. If you don't feel comfortable on a street, take the sidewalk. Just remember to ride SLOWLY, especially at driveways and intersections -- drivers don't expect people at biking speed on sidewalks.
  5. The name of each "layer" give you a little information about the route.
  6. The route in North Arlington is very hilly and involves more challenging riding -- this is not recommended for beginners.
  7. You can use these suggestions in conjunction with Bike Arlington's comfort map to create a loop that works for your family.  
*** If you are using this map for a driving tour, PLEASE remember to be kind on the streets.  Eyes on the road whenever the car is moving forward.  Find a safe place to pull over when gawking at lights. Give bikes *at least* three feet when passing. Accept that a person on a bike is riding in the position safest for them, and that you might have to wait behind them. Enjoy the extra festive time! ***

Happy Holidays from Kidical Mass Arlington!!!










Friday, October 16, 2020

Phoenix Bikes: Arlington Treasure Hunt October 16-19

Today through Monday, join the Phoenix Bikes Treasure Hunt! There's a special family route, that is Kidical Mass Arlington approved (not too hilly or stressful). Or do the entire route with treasures all over Arlington! Perfect for a fall weekend or an asynchronous Monday!

"Fall is almost here, and as the weather cools down, it’s the perfect time to adventure around Arlington to discover some of the fun “treasures” of our hometown. October 16-19, Phoenix Bikes is hosting a scavenger hunt all around Arlington to help you discover little-known sites, from unique pieces of history to artistic curiosities. Ride–or walk, scoot, or drive–from one quirky hidden gem to the next, and have a blast seeing the city from a new perspective during the first ever Arlington Treasure Hunt."

 https://www.phoenixbikes.org/2020/09/arlington-treasure-hunt/

Monday, March 16, 2020

Kidically Social Distancing

Hi Friends,

In this age of COVID-19, we are doing our part to flatten the curve and slow the spread of this virus by not hosting any group rides until we are advised we can hang out in groups again.

Biking with your family is a great way to get fresh air and physical activity.  This site shows routes for all of our past rides, which you can use to plan some rides with your family (without the stops at playgrounds and shops, of course).  I will add notes at the top on the rare ride where I would not recommend the route, or if I know the route is currently impacted by a detour.

Wishing you and yours safety and health.

*Pic from less socially distanced days.
 

Friday, December 20, 2019

Kidical HP 100: The Finale - December 2019

This December we ring out the decade and see the finale of the wonderful HP100 - an awesome, fun day-long festival ride around Hains Point to raise funds and awareness for WABA’s Women & Bicycles program. The HP100 is getting kidical (again): We will have our own special roll out and mini-loop (WITH SPECIAL KIDICAL HANDUPS/STOP-AND-GRABS ON THE ROUTE!!!) 

And this year there's a special raffle for a BRAND NEW BALANCE BIKE!

This isn't a typical Kidical Mass ride -- there will be lots of other riders doing a longer ride and we're just going to ride in a mini loop once -- but it'll be a blast.  The fun continues all day, and you are welcome to ride the entire loop and do as much or as little as you'd like!

We'll start and ride near the tip of Hains Point, which conveniently has an awesome play structure and bathrooms. The Hains Point loop is a completely FLAT 3 mile loop, our mini-loop will be a completely flat 1/2 mile, with a bit of gravel. There are no hills. Plus, it’s got scenic views of the river, the harbor (LOTS OF BOATS) and the airport (PLANES). 


There is no registration fee for the ride, however riders are encouraged to donate to WABA's Women & Bikes.  There are lots of giveaways, raffles, donations and hand-ups the people have donated that will be part of the fun. So if you are participating in the festivities, riders are encouraged to sign-up on the HP100 site.  Details about the ride, sign-up and donate here: www.HainsPoint100.com

There is parking near the start/finish– please park cars along the side of the main street, and not in the start/finish section (there are plenty of spots on the sides).
 

Our mini-loop should end around the time of the first raffle prizes.  And stick around afterwards to check out and chat about the many family-friendly rigs that will be out there. And don't forget, there are active Kidical Mass rides all over the Washington area - come meet some of their regulars!

There will be lots of give-aways and treats. Come! Bring friends! Donate to WABA!

When:  Sunday, December 22, 2019, meet 10:15am, roll out 10:30am RAFFLE at 11am (though the fun will continue all day, and you’re welcome to come down any time)
Start/finish: Hains Point – the tip (the bike symbol on this map)
Parking: Along the sides of Hains Point
 

PS. Sunday morning weather is looking to be warmer than its been, but still cold-ish. Don't forget to bundle up!
Happy Holidays!