HFVS Bicycle Episode (Podcast/Radio Show)

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

HFVS Bicycle Episode

Kids just learning how to ride a bike? Our readers have great advise to lend parents in our post, How Are You Teaching Your Kids to Ride A Bike? Need a bike? Our readers also have recommendations on Where to Get New/Used Bikes for the Family in Western MA. – Can’t get enough bikes? We have another episode of the HFVS from 2007, Summer Bike Riding Episode!


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

  • Parker Bent – “Charlie Davidson’s Tricycle Club” [Charlie Davidson’s Tricycle Club]
  • Lunch Money – “Tricycle” [Silly Reflection]
  • Asylum Street Spankers – “Training Wheel Rag” [Mommy Says No!]
  • Justin Roberts – “Taking off My Training Wheels” [Meltdown!]
  • Hot Peas ‘n Butter – “Different Spokes for Different Folks” [The Pod Squad]
  • The Pop Stars – “Your Life as You Know it is Over” [The Pop Stars (Pink)]
  • Joe West – “If the World Was Upside Down” [If the World Was Upside Down]
  • Tom Paxton – “Ride My Bike” [I’ve Got a Yo-Yo]
  • Recess Monkey – “Pedal Power” [Tabby Road]
  • Ralph Covert – “Banana Seat Bike” [Ralph’s World Peggy’s Pie Parlor]
  • Station Id: Steve Weeks [www.steveweeksmusic.com]
  • Mr. Saxaphone – “Go Go Go” [Songs from the Treehouse]
  • Gwendolyn and the Good Time Gang – “Bicycle Ride” [Get Up & Dance]
  • Artichoke – “Rattlesnake” [26 Animals]
  • Ani DiFranco w/ Missoula Coyote Choir & Friends – “The Great TV Rebellion” [Ask the Planet]
  • Herbie Tree – “Change” [Putumayo Kids Presents European Playground]
  • The Jellydots – “Bicycle” [Hey You Kids]
  • The Hipwaders – “My Green Bicycle” [The Hipwaders]

[Original Broadcast: June 2009]

 

 

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Exploring the History of Fashion through Bicycling

Tweed Run Helps Support A Thriving Community of Cyclists

Local bike ride modeled after rides across the pond, bring placemaking to the streets while raising funds and learning through the lens of history!

Typically, bicycling attire for a modern American involves flexible athletic clothing and sneakers. But at the beginning of cycling history, during the early 19th century, cyclists wore their typical, everyday clothing even when using bicycles for transport. In fact, women’s fashion of the time was a hindrance to their ability to ride, and this was a catalyst for change in women’s style of dress and in the design of the bicycle as manufactures began marketing towards women.  Read the rest of this entry »

The Bicycle: Social Impacts, Past & Present

The Surprising Social Impact of Bicycles
and Local Learning Opportunities

Did you know that before inventing the world’s first successful airplane, Orville and Wilbur Wright owned a bicycle shop? They repaired and rented out bicycles and eventually went on to build their own bicycles and invent small improvements to the machines. In addition to gaining practice in engineering skills, this business funded their aviation experiments.

Simpler and less expensive than cars, bicycles can be a fun tool for tinkering. The fact that the parts of a bicycle are exposed can help people understand the physics driving the machine. Plus, owning a bicycle can give you an immense sense of freedom. Bicycles obviously do not travel as fast as cars (depending on traffic flow!) and can’t take you as far, but at the same time they are affordable to more people and they are driven by human energy. Biking allows you to take a closer look at the world around you and get exercise in a fun way.
Read the rest of this entry »

Pedaling About ❥ Valley Bike Paths

Sarah Werthan Buttenwieser Banner

Note 2, Bike Paths

❥ Relatively early in my pregnancy with my second child, I began to get just the littlest bit hooked on riding my bicycle on what we called the bike path. Back then, you’d have known what I meant, the one to Belchertown from Northampton. It felt shiny new and exciting. I was enthralled rolling along.

Somehow, rides like that seemed to fall by the wayside (mostly, time without kids like that fell by the wayside).

I’ve used my bike since then, and done some bike path riding, even, but not all that much. Still, I heart—big heart—the whole bike path movement. As a still-timid-around-cars biker, the bike paths seem exceedingly smart, in large part for the safety factor. But there’s more—on the bike paths, you can get places. You can get places and the route there is a pretty one and a cleaner one (free of exhaust). And by riding a bicycle when you are actually going somewhere (beyond a ride in order to ride, which is awesome on its own merits), you’re not polluting the area by one car less. However you look at it, biking is one of those win-win-wins.

A few weeks ago, my eight year-old and I took the bike path—for the sake of testing his brand-new bike (pictured in parking lot, thus no helmet)—almost to the center of Easthampton (it was dusk and we felt compelled to be sure to get home by dark or we’d have gone that much further).

I was reminded of this: biking with someone you enjoy talking to can be really pleasant on a bike path. There was a way that we’d removed ourselves from the constraints of everyday obligations—and the road.

The next weekend, we biked to Hadley—smack into the town’s Memorial Day festivities. That ride, for my eight year-old, was all about crossing the Connecticut River. We feasted with our eyes on the view as we made our way across (and back). Then, we detoured from the bike path just far enough to enjoy a feast of a different sort—at GoBerry in Northampton (author’s note: I could write an entire essay about my love of GoBerry and its delightful owners Molly and Alex).

❥ My practical goals this year include equipping my bike to haul a bit more (including possibly a three year-old) and then to ride that much more than I used to (I might even get comfortable on the road this year). I anticipate using the bikes paths frequently.

My fantasy has to do with a short spin I boldly invited myself to take on an incredibly fun machine: a tandem recumbent bicycle. Its owners bicycled cross-country on it last summer (and kept a blog). This summer, they are having twins, a far longer journey. Although we just met, I’ve offered up my baby-holding skills. I have no fantasies of a newborn pair over here. My dream after the tandem recumbent bike is a tag-a-long once the littlest gal is big enough for one (on my bike, not a recumbent tandem). At that point, I imagine you’ll find a good portion of my crew on those paths a good portion of the time.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sarah Werthan Buttenwieser

Sarah is a writer, who lives in Northampton with her husband and four children. She contributes to Preview Massachusetts Magazine, as well as other publications and writes a parenting blog Standing in the Shadows at the Valley Advocate. She moved to the Valley to attend Hampshire College—and found the Valley such a nice place, she stayed!

Q&A: How Are You Teaching Your Kids to Ride A Bike?

Question and Answer

Bike safety is an important issue for kids both learning and already riding. Click on the photo for bike safety tips. (Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield)

Anyone have kids just learning to ride a bike, or transitioning out of training wheels? How are you teaching them to ride their bikes? Anyone have some great advise to lend to parents and kids learning to two-wheel it?

  • Amanda Saklad suggests: “Ride on grass – falling is less painful.”
  • Laura Hoffman suggests: “Yeah, it’s great to find a grassy small decline that they can coast down without pedaling, then when they see that they can do that they can start to learn the pedaling part.”
  • Jeff Wagenheim suggests: “Not much of a decline, though. You don’t want them to go too fast. Better that they struggle with pedaling through the grass on level ground than be frightened by speed they can’t control. I took my kids to a baseball field that was level but had recently been mowed, so the grass was short and easy to pedal on.”
  • Kate McCarthy Roy suggests: “Raise the training wheels gradually. My daughter crashed once and bent one training wheel all the way up – it was the best way to show her she could do it without them. Or, you get lucky in my son’s case… he wanted them off at age 3 because he saw his 5 year old sister riding a two-wheeler, and he just took off!”
  • Tish Serrani suggests: “Training wheels are too dangerous. Balance bikes (without pedals) like Scuut and Zuma to name just two on the market. Kids will be able to ride a real bike younger and safer.”
  • Beth Caissie suggests: “We went the balance bike route too–just took the pedals off a small kids bike. Our son rode without pedals for a month or so. Once he could balance for 50′ or more without touching the ground, we put the pedals back on. I ran behind him holding his shoulders (read that it teaches them to balance more) for another week or two and he was off. This was right around his 4th b-day.”
  • Jennifer Mitchell Martin suggests: “Both our kids learned after riding with my husband on our tag-a-long. I think it helped them learn balance.”
  • Rebecca Dejnak suggests: “Agree a balance bike is fabulous. We have a strider and my daughter was on a regular bike around 4.5 yrs only needing a few days of support, I held onto the back of the seat as she felt safest there and occ the center handle bars initially.”
  • Jennifer Neiman Gottlieb suggests: “Our kids had a lot of success learning to ride on grass first (softens the blow!), though my son actually used one of those “like a bikes” without pedals and went to two wheels easily and early. Those things are great!”
  • Sara Karz Reid suggests: “My daughter started on a push bike (no pedals), and went right to a two-wheeler without too much difficulty when she was four. There are a lot of bikes out there designed without pedals, but you can also just take the pedals off of a regular bike and put the seat down low. If you don’t have the tools to do it yourself, any bike shop should be able to do it for you.”
  • Desiree DuBois suggests: “Runner bikes (no pedals) are the bomb- worked like magic for both our kids. They learned balance and control first and then when they had that down the transition to pedals was quick smooth and easy.”
  • Ellie Newman Petrov  suggests, “Try a pedal free bike!”
  • Susan Countryman suggests, “Pedal-free bikes weren’t on the market when our girl was little and now we are struggling with teaching a tall 8-year-old to ride. The proper sized bike is big so its harder to balance and there’s farther to fall. Anyone dealing with teaching older kids to ride?”
  • Sarah Buttenwieser replies, “Grassy slope, don’t pedal (even could take them off for a bit), get the balance going down incline. Balance is the issue. Pick up feet. Feel that & then with the pedals it’ll work (like the pedal-less bikes for tots).”
  • Gillian Daley replies, “Lower the bike seat so her feet can touch the ground (or borrow a smaller bike for a bit) and remove the pedal crank (lots of videos on YouTube). This makes a balance bike that is more appropriately sized for an 8 year old. When you put the pedals back on, after much balance play on the bike, keep the seat low so she feels safe enough while adding in the pedaling skills.”

Bike to School in the Valley for Bike Commute Week

Bike Commute Week in the Valley
May 15th-23rd, 2010

Families in the Valley are invited to park the family car and bike to school, the library, the park or other short trips in the community during the Pioneer Valley’s Eleventh Annual Bike Commute Week, May 15th-23rd, 2010. This collaborative effort of the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission, MassBike Pioneer Valley, MassDOT, PVTA, WRSI, community volunteers, and business and civic organizations encourages Pioneer Valley families to put away the car keys and ride their bikes when they can.

Sixteen communities will host events this year, including Baystate Village Bike Bonanza this Saturday (May 15th) at Maines Field (570 Riverside Drive) in Northampton.  Bring the kids and your bicycles and come get a tune ups, decorate your bikes, participate in a safety clinics and games, and win prizes. Other activities and events during the week include free breakfast for bicycle commuters, bike tours of the region’s landscape, community bike rides, music, lectures, a bicycle rodeo, prizes, bike-themed film festivals.

To find out what’s happeing and for information about bike commuting, visit the Pioneer Valley Bike Week website at www.pvBikeWeek.com, www.BayStateBikeWeek.com, or contact Brian Markey, Bike Commute Week Regional Coordinator, at (413) 781-6045 or by e-mail at bmarkey@pvpc.org

HFVS Bicycle Episode (Radio Show/Podcast)

Listen to Podcast:

BICYCLE EPISODE

Saturday from 9-10am
Original Broadcast: June 6th, 2009
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

PLAYLIST

Kids just learning how to ride a bike? Our readers have great advise to lend parents in our post, How Are You Teaching Your Kids to Ride A Bike? Need a bike? Our readers also have recommendations on Where to Get New/Used Bikes for the Family in Western MA. – Can’t get enough bikes? We have another episode of the HFVS from 2007, Summer Bike Riding Episode!

  • Parker Bent – “Charlie Davidson’s Tricycle Club” [Charlie Davidson’s Tricycle Club]
  • Lunch Money – “Tricycle” [Silly Reflection]
  • Asylum Street Spankers – “Training Wheel Rag” [Mommy Says No!]
  • Justin Roberts – “Taking off My Training Wheels” [Meltdown!]
  • Hot Peas ‘n Butter – “Different Spokes for Different Folks” [The Pod Squad]
  • The Pop Stars – “Your Life as You Know it is Over” [The Pop Stars (Pink)
  • Joe West – “If the World Was Upside Down” [If the World Was Upside Down]
  • Tom Paxton – “Ride My Bike” [I’ve Got a Yo-Yo]
  • Recess Monkey – “Pedal Power” [Tabby Road]
  • Ralph Covert – “Banana Seat Bike” [Ralph’s World Peggy’s Pie Parlor]
  • Station Id: Steve Weeks [www.steveweeksmusic.com]
  • Mr. Saxaphone – “Go Go Go” [Songs from the Treehouse]
  • Gwendolyn and the Good Time Gang – “Bicycle Ride” [Get Up & Dance]
  • Artichoke – “Rattlesnake” [26 Animals]
  • Ani DiFranco w/ Missoula Coyote Choir & Friends – “The Great TV Rebellion” [Ask the Planet]
  • Herbie Tree – “Change” [Putumayo Kids Presents European Playground]
  • The Jellydots – “Bicycle” [Hey You Kids]
  • The Hipwaders – “My Green Bicycle” [The Hipwaders]

Suggested Events 05/17/08-05/23/08

BIKE RIDING

Other than the Cummington Fairgrounds, there aren’t may places for kids to learn to ride their bikes in the hilltowns. Driveways are often gravel or dirt. Country roads can be unforgiving … and forget about sidewalks! So I’ve been packing up my daughter’s bike to ride down at Look Park. It’s a great place to let the kids learn to ride. This weekend as part of the Pioneer Valley Bike Commute Week there will be a coordinated bike ride at Look Park on Sunday at 1pm, followed by a potluck picnic. Maybe we’ll toss the four-wheeler (training wheels) in the back of the car and head on down to the valley to practice some more. And then after a little bike riding maybe we’ll head over to the River Valley Market for a snack (did you know they’ve finally opened?!).

Suggest an Event | Local forecast | Get directions | Museum Passes | Family Centers (Ages 0-4) | Farmer’s Market

Saturday – 05/17

7am – 9am – FAMILY RADIO – (Air Waves) Are you prepared to rock?! Join Bill & Ella on Spare the Rock, Spoil the Child every Saturday on The River 93.9FM (101.5FM in Brattleboro), or 103.3 FM WXOJ-LP to hear two hours of quality family-friendly music. [All ages] (Free) LINK

9am-10am – FAMILY RADIO & STORYTELLING – (Air Waves) Join our Hilltown Family! Spend a little time with Sienna & Persephone on The Hilltown Family Variety Show every Saturday on WXOJ-LP 103.3FM to hear a full hour of commercial-free, quality family-friendly music and storytelling. [Families] (Free) LINK

9am-Noon – PLANT SALE – (Shelburne Falls) Bridge of Flowers Benefit Plant Sale. On the green between Main and Water Sts.. [All Ages]

9am – PLANT SALE – (Worthington) At the Historical Society’s building at the corner of Routes 112 & 143. [All Ages]

9:30am – WOMEN OF COLOR MOMS GROUP – (Northampton) Support group meets every 3rd Saturday at the Forbes Library. LINK

Illustration (c) 2007 Hilltown Families

9:30am – BOOK & PLANT SALE – (Westhampton) The Friends of the Westhampton Memorial Library is holding their annual Blossoms, Books & Backrubs. Also check out the “Flock to the Library” pink flamingo event happening across the street. 413.529.9670 [Families] ($)

9:30am-4:30pm – HISTORIC COOKING – (Deerfield) Open Hearth Cooking Demonstrations at the Historic Deerfield Hall Tavern Kitchen. All are invited to experience the sights, sounds, and aromas of hearth cooking while learning about colonial foods and diet. Visitors can also see what’s growing when they visit the Cooks’ Garden dedicated to the memory of Margaret Quinn Orloske. Demonstrations are included with general admission. 413.775.7214 [All Ages] (Free with museum pass. Borrow a museum pass from your local library.) LINK

9:30am – ART & CRAFT SUPPLY – (Shelburne Falls) The Children’s Art Museum is having a fundraising event. 413.625.2030 [All Ages] (Fundraiser) LINK

10am – HEALTH AWARENESS – (Northampton) Step Up to Health at Look Park. Games and activities for the fmaily. 413.584.5457 [Families] (Free with park admission)

10am-1pm – OUTDOOR PROGRAM – (Ashfield) Path of the Otter Program. [Ages 5-7] ($$) LINK

Noon-4pm – HISTORIC FLOWERS – (Deerfield) May Flowers at the Historic Deerfield Museum. In this family friendly history workshop visitors can learn about the many meanings and uses of flowers in the past. A printed “flower expedition” will have guests seeking blossoms hidden in wallpaper designs, clothing, ceramics, and more in our historic houses and in the Flynt Center of Early New England Life. Children and adults alike can make a nosegay of decorative paper flowers to take home. Workshop is included with general admission. 413.775.7214 [All Ages] (Free with museum pass. Borrow a museum pass from your local library.) LINK

2pm & 3pm – CHORUS – (Amherst) Hampshire Young People’s Chorus at the Eric Carle Museum. [All Ages] (Free with admission) LINK

7PM – COMMUNITY CHORUS – (Hadley) Amandla Community Chorus will be performing at the Wesley United Methodis Church. [All Ages] (Free) LINK

7:30pm – YOUTH THEATRE – (Amherst) Starlight’s Youth Theatre in The Wizard of Oz at the Amherst Middle School. 413.253.9511 [Families] ($)

Read the rest of this entry »

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