Tuesday, October 19, 2021

October 2021: Halloween Ride Returns! 10/24 4pm Zitkala'Sa Park Sponsored by Trek Clarendon


It's baaaaack! 


The Kidical Mass Arlington Halloween ride returns: time to put on your costume, ride bikes and prepare to eat copious amounts of candy!  This year we're partnering up with the Trek Bikes to celebrate! 

We'll meet at Zitkala-Sa Park, where families can come early to enjoy the brand new, super fun playground playground. Then we will bike off through the spooky parts of Ashton Heights, Lyon Park, and Lyon Village, enjoying some of Arlington's finest Halloween decorations! Finally, we'll roll to Trek's Clarendon store on Wilson Boulevard, where we've been invited over for a pizza party! This family-friendly bike shop has invited us in to enjoy some pizza and drinks, and of course to visit their great shop! Thanks Trek, we can't wait! 

If you could respond to the Facebook event so we know numbers, that'd be great! 


When: Sunday, October 24, 2021

Meet: 4:00pm - 
Zitkala-Sa Park - North Highland Street and 7th Street North (roll out 4:15pm)

Parking: Neighborhood streets





Tuesday, September 28, 2021

10/2/21: Ride for Black Lives Family Ride Meet 3:30pm TJ Community Center

Black Lives Matter.

We still have so much work to do, even in Arlington, to address racial and social justice.  In support of those efforts, Kidical Mass Arlington will join Arlington for Justice's Ride for Black Lives on Saturday, October 2, 2021, for a special family ride.  

The family ride will meet at TJ Community Center (3501 2nd St S, Arlington, VA 22204) along 2nd Street South at 3:30pm, and will join the main ride when they come through.  We will ride to Dr. Charles R. Drew Elementary School (3500 23rd St S, Arlington, VA 22206).  The route is 2 miles and mostly downhill.  We will have a police escort with the main ride.

Everyone is welcome on our rides (as long as kids come with an adult), but we ask that you register with the Ride for Justice (it's pay what you can, with a free option). Given the group and the police escort, riders will need to be able to ride 5-6mph (it's mostly downhill), so training wheels aren't a good choice for this ride.

Masks: We ask that everyone bring a mask and wear it when, especially when you're off the bike and in close contact to others.

When: Saturday, October 2, 2021
Meet: 3:30pm - TJ Community Center (2nd St S and ) - roll out approximately 3:45pm
Parking: TJ Community Center & Neighborhood streets

For those who would like to ride back to the start, we recommend the following route.  Note that it involves a big hill and crossing of Walter Reed Drive without a traffic light, but it is the most kidical-friendly route.

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/