Sunday, April 19, 2009

Reflections of the Cycling Symposium

This weekend, as the president of the West Virginia Cycling Foundation, I helped lead a meeting of about 75 movers and shakers involved in cycling throughout the State. Friday evening, we enjoyed a dinner at the governor’s mansion. Senator Dan Foster kicked off the evening with his reflections of the health impact of a healthy life style…the personal impact on the individual and the financial impact on all citizens.

He was followed by Secretary of Transportation Paul Mattox who committed to help the State become much more cycling friendly and we were treated to an inspiring visit by Andy Clarke, the president of the League of American Cyclists

On Saturday, we rolled up our sleeves and went to work. Symposium Champion Kim Broughton kicked off the meeting and set the stage for the day. Jeff Miller, president of The Alliance for Biking and Walking followed and shared the national perspective and his numerous experiences with other States. We broke out into task teams and discussed many topics….like:

Economic Impact of Cycling (which is major)
Legislation (Upon which we could improve…see the three foot rule…see allowing cycling on the shoulder)
Lobbying….hey…this is a great investment so show me the money
Education….safe cycling skills for riders and drivers
Access for kids and adults….more connectivity.
The trend to put cycling and pedestrian activities under the same tent
Mapping projects…so you know where to go and what to expect
The many forms of cycling….as in replacing a car to go to the store…as in mountain biking….as in children cycling…as in racing…as in family time on a rail to trail....and so much more.

And then we talked about how to create success.

I’m not sure exactly what will happen next….except to say I think we are on the path that will one day lead West Virginia from being the 50th on the League’s List:

Bottom 5
46. North Dakota
47. Mississippi
48. Alabama
49. Georgia
50. West Virginia

To the cracking the top 5! Look out Minnesota…we’re on the way.
Top 5
1. Washington
2. Wisconsin
3. Arizona
4. Oregon
5. Minnesota

Stay in touch through my BLOG ( or following me on Twitter (@davidpray).




Mike T. said...

This was a great event, I am really excited to see where we can take the movement. We are all here to help move WV out of the gutter and improve the cycling conditions in the state.

Dave Pray said...

Thanks Mike. Glad you were there and I think we do have a lot to look forward to.

mike said...

Its great that there are people committed to bettering cycling, thanks!