CycloFemme and Bicycle Share Breaking Down Barriers to Cycling
This May 11, 2014, the 3rd Annual CycloFemme Global Women’s Cycling Day will break down new barriers through a multi-city collaboration with Bicycle Share programs.
As ride counts grow world-wide for CycloFemme, the May 11, 2014 Global Women’s Cycling Day, riders in New York City, the San Francisco Bay Area, and Boulder can join in without needing a bike of their own. Through a collaboration with CycloFemme, Bicycle Share programs in these cities are promoting self-led CycloFemme ride routes throughout their service areas. Additionally, Bay Area Bike Share will sell discounted 24-hour memberships at bayareabikeshare.com/store from May 1 through May 11.
“CycloFemme is rooted in community, sharing and bringing a friend along for the ride,” says CycloFemme co-founder Tanya Quick. “Bicycle Share reduces the barrier to entry by providing a bike for anyone and everyone. This collaboration has potential to expose an exponential group of new riders to the joys of urban riding.”
As Bicycle Share continues to grow in popularity, the number of women riding in urban markets is multiplying. While the majority of Bicycle Share riders are currently male, the gap is closing, as this Fast Co report recently detailed. (https://www.fastcoexist.com/3028926/nyc-bike-share-riders-are-overwhelmingly-30-something-dudes-but-the-gap-is-narrowing) Joining forces around the annual CycloFemme ride is an opportunity to expand this base of riders further.
“Boulder B-cycle has been fortunate to have a strong base of female riders who have chosen to integrate biking into their daily lives, and we are excited to be partnering with CycloFemme this Mother’s Day to help empower even more women around Boulder through cycling”, says Kevin Bell, Marketing and Communications Manager for Boulder B-cycle. “Bike sharing provides a convenient entry point to biking for less experienced or lapsed riders, and we hope that many will take advantage of this opportunity to give biking a try—again, or for the very first time.”
For Citi Bike in New York City and Bay Area Bike Share, the routes also provide an opportunity to showcase the variety of communities included, and how easy–and fun–it is to connect neighborhoods by bike.
“Over the past year we’ve seen dozens of tabloid articles documenting actresses and models on Citi Bike, but the thing that warms our hearts the most is seeing just how many “normal” New York ladies are using Citi Bike as a fun, convenient and affordable way to get around town,” says Dani Simons, Director of Marketing for New York City Bike Share, the operators of Citi Bike. “We’re delighted to partner with CycloFemme to help encourage even more women to use our bikes as a gateway into what we hope will be a long relationship with bicycling.”
With the statement “We Ride Together,” the goal of CycloFemme is to create strong communities built around strong women. By encouraging women to ride, by acting locally and connecting globally, CycloFemme seeks to create healthier, happier, more connected communities. By lowering the barrier to entry through the Bicycle Share partnership, more women can join in and take a leadership role.
“CycloFemme creates leaders out of women who ride by creating this easy format of a one-day ride of any size or type,” says Jenn Cash, co-founder of CycloFemme. “Bicycle share makes the idea even more accessible since the rides are organized by the location of bike stations and self-led. It takes the pressure off of route-planning and “Leading” while still encouraging women to become organizers among their friends or community.”
Now in its 3rd year, CycloFemme is celebrated annually on the US Mother’s Day. What started as a simple idea: a grass roots ride, on Mother’s Day, unified by a temporary tattoo has grown into a global event. Last year saw rides in 31 countries and 45 US states; this year’s goal is 50 countries and all 50 states. 2013’s ride also saw a significant increase in the number of individual participants. Rides have grown from an estimated average of 20 riders to 50 or more, some with 150+ riders, underscoring the leadership growth of rider leaders.
A creative initiative of Girl Bike Love + Language Dept., fiscally sponsored by The League of American Bicyclists, CycloFemme is a global day of celebration to Honor the Past, Celebrate the Present, Empower the Future of Women in Cycling. The mission states “Teach women to ride, and they will change the world.”
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