Oregon Walk and Bike News

Register now! Oregon Safe Routes to School Conference

  • Do you want a strong Safe Routes to School Program in your community?
  • Do you want to personally know who to go to when you have a challenge?
  • Are you ready to roll up your sleeves and change the world?

If so, the Walk+Bike Network invites you to come to the 3rd Annual Oregon Safe Routes to School Conference (formerly the Walk+Bike Retreat)! The conference is coming up on June 26-28, 2014 in Newburg, Oregon and registration is open now.

Our goal is to create a conference that will use all of our talents to the fullest and allow us to work and grow together as a team, working towards our common goal: making it safe and accessible for every student to walk and bike to school. We will spend two-and-a-half days working on projects to make this a reality, so get ready to roll up your sleeves!

During the conference we will dig into all aspects of Safe Routes to School, how each “E” (Education, Encouragement, Evaluation, Enforcement, and Engineering) applies to Oregon and to your community, and also discuss:

  • Visioning for Oregon Safe Routes to School
  • Goal setting
  • Getting results
  • Local Issues
  • State Issues
  • Teamwork
  • Networking

In addition to the conference, there are opportunities for pre-conference trainings on Tuesday and Wednesday, June 23rd and 24th. You can contact LeeAnne for information about the Youth Bicycle Education Curriculum training, or contact Lynne for more information about the Neighborhood Navigators Curriculum training.

This year's full Conference program:

Thursday, June 26
10am: Visioning Session
12pm: Lunch (on your own)
1pm: Continue Visioning
Afternoon: Break into teams with goals from visioning session
4:30pm:  Key Note Speaker and Networking
Evening: Teamwork (optional)

Friday, June 27
8am: Coffee and Community discussions: Local problem solving
10am: Presentations and discussions (Topics and facilitators TBD on Thursday based on the needs of the group)
12pm: Lunch (on your own)
1pm: Subject Matter Experts available for questions and brainstorming
2:30-evening: Teams work on goals and presentations
6pm-8pm: team fun and networking

Saturday, June 28
8am: Coffee
9am: Team Presentations
12pm: Closing and next steps
Afternoon optional activity: Wine tasting! (various locations in downtown Newberg)

What are you waiting for? Register now!

Cost of the conference is $30 per person. Limited scholarships are available. Contact LeeAnne for more information.

Jump Start from Gresham to Redmond, Your Community is Next!

Mike Mann's class at Dexter McCarty Middle School

The Bicycle Transportation Alliance, Redmond Parks and Recreation, and Redmond School Disrict are partnering for the 2013/2014 school year through the BTA’s Walk+Bike Education Jump Start Program. 


Participating in Jump Start allows Oregon school districts, Parks and Recreation departments and other organizations to apply to use our mobile bike fleet and receive training in our award winning Bicycle Safety Education Program for the entire 2013/2014school year. Apply now for this FREE program and your community may be chosen to be the recipient in the 2014-2015 school year!

Last year the Jump Start Program was in Gresham where the Gresham-Barlow School district taught 75 students to ride safely throughout the year.


Troy, Courtney, Randy, Adam, Amy, Al,
Anna and Jack Go Team Redmond!


Our new team in Redmond has been trained in the use of the BTA’s curriculum, maintenance of the fleet and safe riding techniques in order to bring Bike Safety classes to students in their fair city.

Does the Jumpstart Program sound like a great fit for your community in the future? We enthusiastically encourage you to apply to get our fleet and training for the 2014/2015-school year.

30,000 Students Walk & Bike to Healthier Habbits

“This is so FUN! Let’s do this every day.” -students at Klamath Falls elementary schools.



That sentiment was echoed by kids across the Oregon yesterday as over 30,000 students walked or rode to school for International Walk+Bike to School Day.

The Bicycle Transportation Alliance and the Walk+Bike Network are excited to announce that 260 Oregon schools participated in the 2013 International Walk+Bike to School Day on October 9th, coming in 4th in state-wide participation, just behind California (519 schools), Florida (284), and South Carolina (277)!

“I am so proud of each and every volunteer Walk+Bike Organizer who held amazing events at schools all over the state,” said LeeAnne Fergason, Education Director for the Bicycle Transportation Alliance. ”We are grateful for the time and commitment to the health and safety of the 30,000 students impacted! Next year let’s give South Carolina and Florida a run for their money!”


Walk+Bike to School Day is celebrated in many schools as part of a larger Safe Routes to School program based on 5 programmatic principles aimed at increasing the number of families walking and riding to school for health and safety: education, encouragement, engineering improvements, enforcement engagement, and evaluation.

Portland Transportation Bureau Director Leah Treat “As a mom of four children I am always concerned about their safety, being able to get them to and from school is something my husband and I think about twice every day during the school year. As (Portland’s) Transportation Director I care about every child traveling to and from school in a safe manner. And I want to encourage healthy choices in that endeavor. Safe Routes to School is a great resource that helps our city do just that.”

The BTA has been working since 1998 to encourage students to walk and bike on International Walk+Bike to School Day. Participation has increased from 47 schools and 7,000 students in 2004 to what we saw yesterday when 20% of Oregon’s 1,305 schools participated. Over 30,000 Oregon kids took an important step towards being active and healthy yesterday because they walked or biked to school.


“The childhood obesity epidemic is a crisis that, in the long run, affects all of us,” says Dr. Jimmy Unger, a Portland pediatrician who attended a Walk+Bike to School Day event at Maplewood Elementary in Portland. “As one who spends much of my day encouraging families to be more active for the sake of their children’s health, I know that efforts such as these at Maplewood make it easier for families to make healthy choices.”

At Maplewood and other schools across Oregon, Volunteer Walk+Bike Organizers pulled off some amazing events and took note of students’ reactions:

  • “I over heard kid say, ‘I love walking.’” -Burt Tate, Roseburg
  • “The health room is filled with scooters! and 7th grader with walk bike shoe lace tied to his head, ‘yeah, I’m starting a trend.’” -Cynthia Keifer, Beaverton
  • “Students are bragging that they walk almost everyday.” -Nicole Perry, Milwaukie
  • “One student said, ‘I want to ride to school EVERY day this year!’” -Julie Gefroh, Portland
  • “Teachers were saying, ‘This was AWESOME!’” -Katrina Hanson, Roseburg
  • “Kids shouted, ‘We should do this every month!’” -Brett Walter, Portland
  • “Kids are already asking when the next (event) is.” -Bobbi St. Clair, Grant’s Pass
  • “Kids said, ’That was cool!’” -Kim Ryhlick, Hood River

“The more we celebrate with students, the more they and their communities value making an active trip to school, and the more they want to do it,” says Fergason. “We have all heard the terrifying statistics on childhood obesity and understand who is at risk. International Walk+Bike to School Day is just one way we can help give kids what they want: more safe places to walk and ride.”