Students from Bella Coola Elementary School bike during GoByBike Week in 2019 in the community. (Photo submitted)

Students from Bella Coola Elementary School bike during GoByBike Week in 2019 in the community. (Photo submitted)

Bella Coola Valley residents invited to take part in GoByBike Week in B.C.

From May 31 to June 6, GoByBike BC is encouraging people to ride their bikes as much as possible

GoByBike BC, and local co-ordinator Janice Kyle, is inviting Bella Coola Valley residents to blow off a bit of pent up, COVID steam as they celebrate cycling for the week of May 31 to June 6.

For the past 15 months B.C. residents have faced stretches of time where gyms, arenas, swimming pools, and even playgrounds, were closed, limiting many regular activities, and also contributing to peoples’ stress and mental health.

Cycling, meanwhile, became a staple for many already enjoying the activity, and for others looking to try something new, and safe, outdoors.

From May 31 to June 6, GoByBike BC — a non-profit society that secures and shares resources to communities throughout B.C. to help them deliver successful events, and encourages using a bike for everyday transportation — is encouraging people to ride their bikes as much as possible.

Cycle around your neighbourhood, enjoy biking on local trails, try riding a bike instead of driving, or organize a ride with your ‘bubble’ are just some of the suggestions to take part.

Registration is free at Participants can then log all of their rides for chances at winning great prizes including an Exodus Travels cycling adventure for two: ‘Cycling the Dalmatian Coast in Croatia.’

Kyle said once a person registers and rides during the week, they will then be eligible to select a pair of Blue Sky socks from Mountain Valley Organics.

Sir Alexander Mackenzie Secondary has also received a grant from Active Transport BC and has cycling events planned, along with encouraging high school students to go by bike to and from school.

“Even the students at Nuxalk elementary in grades 5-7 will be doing cycling throughout the week, and the following week,” Kyle said. “The teachers have all been very supporting and getting involved, too.”

READ MORE: Bike shops busier than ever

Kyle said she would like to alert drivers GoByBike Week is taking place, and to be cautious of students riding their bikes on the road in town during the week.

Participants can also link their GoByBike account to their STRAVA account and be automatically entered for prize draws when riding using STRAVA.

Students, meanwhile, also have a chance to win more prizes by entering the Bike Reels Student Video Contest.

Submissions for the contest can include short videos on how cycling has helped you during the pandemic, or tips for safe cycling, or why cycling is good for the environment, or more. Contest details can be found here.

Across the province, friendly competitions are also cropping up. Abbotsford, for example, has challenged Chilliwack to see who can motivate the most riders to register and which community will bike the most kilometres by June 14.

There are social media contests, too, where participants can win a limited edition United By Cycling hat, and more prizes. Follow GoByBikeBC on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to participate.

The GoByBikeBC website also offers safety tips for all road users, including drivers. As cycling increases in communities across B.C. during GoByBike Week, everyone is reminded to make space when passing someone riding a bicycle.

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