Kidical Mass was born in April of 2008 in Eugene Oregon. The early morning brainstorm was a combination of wanting to get more kids and families excited about riding and wanting to put together a little event to celebrate Ted White coming to town (White is creator of, Return of the Scorcher (1992), a documentary about bike culture that first coined the term “critical mass,” and, We Are Traffic (1999), a film that chronicles the often misunderstood and controversial ride). We wanted to do something different than the traditional Critical Mass ride and Shane coined the term “Kidical Mass” (though he’s sure it has been used before).
Shane MacRhodes — who manages the Safe Routes to Schools program for a Eugene-area school district and has been active in the bike advocacy world for 15 years says “The bike movement has grown up, and now it has kids!”
How do WE do Kidical Mass?
We want our rides to be comfortable for families just starting out and biking on city streets for the first time but we don’t shy away from traffic just because kids will be riding. There is comfort in numbers, not just on a group ride like this but also in the day to day world of riding in the city. A ride like this is meant to help families feel that comfort by having a group to ride with and hopefully they will incorporate it into their daily transportation choice.
Some of our basic guidelines:
* Personal responsibility (obey traffic laws and no group movements through stop signs and lights)
* Have fun!
* Go get a treat (like ice cream)
* Have fun!
* Outreach to families via non-bikey means (schools, grocery stores, PTOs, etc.)
* A short FUN route that doesn’t involve busy streets but utilizes a mix of residential streets (hopefully bike boulevards or traffic calmed) and off street paths
* Some ‘street presence’ so we are seen and recognized out there
* Get the kids involved! Have them do artwork, tell their friends, and most importantly- come to the ride! (we’re working to get a PSA made up by kids!)
Email us if you have comments, suggestions, or questions!