Stephanie Leonard

61 new members of the bike community (and counting!)

When we launched our Bike School in April with Learn to Ride classes, we weren’t quite sure what the response would be. Now midway through the season, I receive inquiries from people interested in registering nearly daily.

What’s the most exciting part? No two students are the same! Women, men and children of all ages and cultures are learning to ride through Bicycle Colorado’s Bike School.

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Bridging ages and cultures

Since April of this year, 61 youth and adults have taken group or private lessons with the Bike School. Students have ranged from 4-77 years old and originate from all over the world, including the United States, Mexico, India, Sudan, Ethiopia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Myanmar and the Philippines. The largest age bracket of new riders is adults 31-50 years old.

Bicycle Colorado has also partnered with both the African Community Center and Groundwork Denver to organize classes for their clients, resettled refugees and Spanish-speaking adults.

We want to thank New Belgium Brewing, Alchemy and Primal for generously donating time, space and resources to support the Bike School’s premiere season and all of our students.

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Don’t take it from me…

Here is what our students have to say about the Bike School:

“I was so happy to finally find the Bike School. They offer lessons for both adults and children, and I loved that the classes were kept to a small size.  The money spent was absolutely well worth it, too.” 

“The best part of the lesson was watching my son be confident and SMILE! A nice change from crying and giving up.”

“The instructors were friendly and encouraging and did a nice job of tailoring the instruction for each person in the class since we were all starting at different ability levels.”

“I now understand the phrase, ‘it’s like learning to ride a bike’.”

“I was surprised by how quickly you all got the kids riding! It was seriously amazing to watch.”

“While riding a bike does not seem like a big deal, it becomes a HUGE deal when you don’t know how.”

photo: Natalie Starr
photo: Natalie Starr

So what’s next?

Many students have expressed that they are eager for more education, including commuter safety classes. We hope to expand Bike School programs for the coming season, and we want your input.

Are you interested in commuter safety classes? Should we offer guided group rides? Do you know of community organizations we should connect with? Please comment and let us know what you’d like to see next from Bicycle Colorado’s Bike School!

Stephanie Leonard

About the Author: Stephanie Leonard

Stephanie oversees the expanding education department, which includes Safe Routes to School, Bike School and multi-modal transportation programs. As a Surly bike commuter, she enjoys seeing Coloradans get excited about bicycling for transportation. Steph can be found hiking, skiing or climbing across the state every chance that she gets.

COMMENTS (3)

Alanna - Reply

Love the idea of commuter safety classes! I got my bike primarily to enjoy trails, and I’d like to try commuting at some point but the idea of riding around regular traffic is pretty intimidating right now.

    Stephanie Leonard - Reply

    Thanks for the feedback, Alanna. I am hoping to organize a one-day commuter safety course for Bike School graduates in the coming months. I will be sure to keep you updated about the event!

Jenna Berman - Reply

So wonderful to read this! So glad people are finding you… Warms my heart.

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We’re thrilled to see so many people out enjoying (and often rediscovering the joy of) riding a bike right now, and we’re asking ALL bicyclists to do their part to prevent the spread of #covid19 by wearing a mask or other face covering when out for a ride. Doing so keeps you, your loved ones, those around you, and all Coloradans safer while helping reduce stress on our medical system. If you still need a mask, click the link in our bio to pre-order one now and support our advocacy work! Thanks so much to everyone who has already purchased, and to @primalwear for supporting our efforts over the years. Ride on.
  • #BicycleColorado volunteers and staff members spent time today helping @denverurbangardens and @denverfoodrescue deliver “Grow a Garden” food boxes to home-bound families in Denver—via bike! Supporting our community on two wheels makes for a great way to spend a sunny day. Many thanks to our friends @ddchen47, David M., and @juggernautcargo for your help! Head to denverfoodrescue.org or dug.org to learn more about these great local organizations. #rideyourbike
  • Tonight the #BicycleColorado team celebrated Stacey, our outgoing Development Director, with a virtual happy hour. Stacey has been an absolute rockstar for BC. We’re sad to see her leave, but thrilled for her as she heads out on a new adventure (hopefully in the #BikeAdvocacy space!) in North Carolina. Please join us in wishing her well!