Spokane’s Bike to Work Week, May 16-20, will be hosted by the Spokane Bicycle Club this year. A Monday morning pancake breakfast in Riverfront Park courtesy of Mountain Gear will kick off the event-packed week. Riders can track their miles throughout the month of May and compete with other riders as part of the nationwide National Bike Challenge. Bike to Work Week also includes three group rides, a Friday evening pizza party at River City Brewing and several other events –all free and open to the public.

Sally Phillips, the Spokane Bicycle Club member coordinating Bike to Work Week, started bike commuting in her own neighborhood decades ago. Like many people, she found the prospect of biking to work daunting at first. She says some riders’ work schedules, dress requirements, or company culture can pose obstacles to biking to work.

So, this year, the week’s theme is “Bike to Work, Bike Everywhere,” inviting participants to bike commute wherever they can, even if not to work. Phillips started biking to destinations within her neighborhood. The South Hill resident avoided trekking up and down the hill by running errands and meeting friends at South Hill locations by bike. “We’re encouraging people to think about trying a bike as transportation in whatever steps feel comfortable for them,” Phillips says.

The club has coordinated opportunities throughout May for new riders to plan routes and get their bikes ready for safe riding. At the Spokane REI on May 7, local bicycling educators will help attendees plan riding routes. Bike maintenance classes will be held throughout the month at REI, the North Spokane Library, and the Argonne Library. Several local bike shops will offer free bicycle safety checks from May 1-15. Get involved at Spokanebikes.org. //