Friday is Bike-to-Work Day in Merced County

Friday, May 21, is Bike-to-Work Day in Merced County, organizers said in a news release.

The cities of Atwater and Merced, along with the League of American Bicyclists, said Bike-to-Work Day helps promote responsible use of resources and bicycle safety and provides a way to get daily exercise.

Free coffee, juice and goodies will be given away at “Energizer Stations” in Atwater and Merced on your way to work from 7-9 a.m. and on the ride home around 4:30-5:30 p.m. Cyclists can stop by the stations”to pick up free T-shirts and enter to win an electric lawn mower.

In Atwater, cyclists can stop by city hall and Save Mart, both on Bellevue Road. In Merced, stations will be set up at the Civic Center on 18th Street and in the Promenade Center at Yosemite Avenue and Paulson.

Jeff Stopper of Big Creek Lumber and one of Atwater’s major sponsors, said in the news release: “I see Bike-to-Work Day as a reminder that we don’t always have to drive a car. We can save money and resources and live a healthier life by getting out of our cars and riding or walking more often.”

For more information on Atwater’s event, please visit http://www.atwatercause.org/eventcalendar.html or call Melissa Kelly-Ortega at (209) 261-7109.

Contact Information for the Atwater event: Jeff Stopper, manager of Big Creek Lumber and president of the Atwater Chamber of Commerce (209)769-7013 or (209) 725-8394; Officer Joe Hoffar, executive director of Atwater Police Activities League (209) 658-2813.

Contact information for the Merced event: Lisa Kayser-Grant, chair, Merced Bicycle Coalition (209) 769-2233 or www.mercedbicyclecoalition.org.

Organizers thanked local sponsors, including Merced County Association of Governments; San Joaquin Valley Unified Air Pollution Control District; The Merced Bicycle Coalition; Big Creek Lumber; the cities of Atwater and Merced; Dole Packaged Food Co.; Save Mart Supermarkets; the Atwater Chamber of Commerce; Atwater Police Department; Atwater Community Advocates United for a Safe Environment; Castle Family Health Centers; J&R Tacos; Kevin’s Bikes; Raley’s; The Coffee Block; El Portal Dental Group; Merced Pediatric Dentistry; Heritage Homes; American Automobile Association

Following are some tips that will help people enjoy biking to work:

For cyclists:

For drivers:

Only pass a cyclistswhen it’s safe to do so

Slow down and give cyclists about 3 feet of passing room

Never taunt a cyclist – taunting, throwing objects, or trying to hit a cyclist is considered assault with a deadly weapon and is punishable by law