Take a Family Bike Ride with Kidical Mass

Gillian Burgess Tweet us @bikeGillian @bikeGillian September 12, 2018 0 Comments

Gillian Burgess is the chair of Arlington County’s Bicycle Advisory Committee, the founder of Kidical Mass Arlington, and a member of the County’s Fiscal Affairs Advisory Commission, and APS’s Advisory Committee on Transportation Choices. She lives in Cherrydale with her husband and three children.

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Curious about riding with kiddos but not sure where to start? Luckily, there is a parent-run group called Kidical Mass that organizes short, easy social rides geared towards kids and families.

Going out on a bike ride with kids is a wonderful treat, and riding in a group adds fun and a feeling of safety and comfort. We organize Kidical Mass Arlington rides to bring groups of families together to ride together around Arlington.

Why Ride With Us

For many families, finding information about how to ride with kids can be difficult. Kidical Mass Arlington can help with that, too. Families come on a variety of kid-toting bicycles for the rides. You can meet families that use bikes with front seats, rear seats and trailers, long-tail cargo bikes, and box bikes. We share tips and tricks, like where to buy these bikes and where to get them serviced and how to protect the kids from the weather. Families also share tips on riding with kids on their own bikes. My own daughter got excited about learning to ride her own pedal bike when she overheard some parents talking about it. It’s a great community, and friendships are started. And, most importantly, we have fun!

All of our rides are open to everyone. Plenty of adults without kids have come for a nice and easy introduction to group riding in Arlington or to help us develop the next generation of cyclists. Children must be accompanied, and everyone must be on bikes. We always take it slow and understand that sometimes kids need to be kids.

When We Ride

We tend to ride once a month, in the mild weather months. Our next ride is this Saturday, September 15. It’s a great example of the type of ride organized for Kidical Mass. There’s a kid-friendly meet up point, relatively easy route, and a fun end destination. All rides are free, and organized by local parents.

Fall Ride Schedule

September 15

We’ll meet at Oak Grove Park at 3pm and let the kids play on the awesome new playground there. We’ll roll out from the 17th Street entrance after 3:20pm, and we’ll roll around the streets of Cherrydale and Donaldson Run. This ride will be hillier than most of our rides, but we’ve designed the route to be accessible to kids on their own bikes, even if they don’t have gears. We’ll take it slow and will be happy to wait and cheer everyone along. The ride will end at Church of the Covenant on Military and those who want to can stay for the Childrens’ Movie Sing-a-long. Register for the ride.

October 13

We’re teaming up with the Arlington Fun Ride, which supports Phoenix Bikes, and providing the family-friendly ride opportunity. It features a short loop around Crystal City-Pentagon City. We’ll ride through Long Bridge Park and enjoy views of the airport, the train tracks, and the river. We’ll ride past the Pentagon and enjoy protected bike lanes in Pentagon City, ending at the celebration for the Arlington Fun Ride. While all Kidical Mass Rides are free, donations are encouraged for Phoenix Bikes.

Sunday, October 28

This is our annual Halloween ride, which travels around the blissfully flat neighborhood of Ashton Heights, including the exceptionally well-decorated spookiness of Jackson Street. Costumes are encouraged, and a local bike shop supplies treats.

Early November

We’re working to partner with the George Washington Memorial Parkway and BikeArlington to host another Junior Ranger Ride. We’ll travel together to check out some of the neat National Parks in our own backyard, and kids can earn their very own Junior Ranger badge.

Early December

We’re hoping to have a ride in Penrose/Arlington Heights/Douglas Park, highlighting some of the delicious food and culture to be found on Columbia Pike.

Connect with Us

Follow Kidical Mass Arlington on Facebook and read our blog for more details and to sign up for rides.

Photo Credit: Kidical Mass Arlington

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