Sunday, November 27, 2016

Bikes & the Environment Banner + ZINE Collaboration Project!

We are getting ready to be in this year's Athens' "Parade of Lights" Christmas Parade, and working on an interactive banner design to help show off the benefits of Biking and it's beneficial environmental impact! Check out these amazing Stats complied by People for Bikes!

Here's a photo of the fabric Earth we made to be the center piece of the banner. Come on our December 1st to see the parade. We will be with the Bike Athens crew!
Our intent is to create an interactive banner to use on our carts as a place holder, and also to invite public participation on how we work together to change our paradigms and live on our common home. The banner will promote collaboration on the creation of a zine via this public Google Doc: "This is Our Home"    So go check it out! Post some links images, thoughts, writing, musings, or anything related to the theme you'd like to include!
This is a team project dreamed up by all the cyclists with Pedal Promotion: Gretchen, Logan, Colin, Aaron, Maizy and Fiona.
We found a wallet not too long ago. We returned the wallet to it's owner, who sent us a gift card to a favorite local restaurant, Big City Bread Cafe. We had a great time this morning brainstorming about this project, and are excited to bring to you via our bike carts in the weeks to come.The rack outside was loaded up with bikes, and one of them had a very poignant message: #NoDAPL. You don't need gasoline or pipelines if you ride a bike!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Athens awarded a Bronze Designation from the League of American Cyclists

Congrats to Athens for receiving the Bronze designation as a Bike Friendly Community! It's the awesome work of Bike Athens, Georgia Bikes, Let Us Compost, Pedal Promotion, Hub Bikes, Ben's Bikes, Sunshine Bikes, Georgia Cycle Sports and the bike crazy fellows at Jittery Joe's who really make Athens as great as it is for bikes, but it can get even better! JOIN US! Let's flip the culture of this town from car captive to bike/community centric and also help turn the tide on the seemingly unstoppable warming and violence surrounding fossil fuels! Thanks so much to Jim Thompson of the Athens Banner-Hearld for keeping up on bike related news and current events! Check out this article about the recognition by the League of American Cyclists HERE!
Photo by John Roark of the Athens Banner-Hearld

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

America Recycles Week in Athens

Athens is a community inspired by sustainable culture. We are ever more fortunate that we also have the municipal facilities and local businesses working to put our collective environmental work into the greatest public action. For instance, we have an amazing ACC Solid Waste/ Recycling Division that is aiming to decease the volume of waste in the landfill by 70% over the next 4 years, saving us $$, emissions, saves land, and water! There is already a methane capture electrical generating system operating and selling to Oglethorpe Power. The volume reduction goal is a HUGE task, and it is going to take all of us recycling and composting to make it happen. Our county hosts one of the only permitted composting facilities in the region + an equally valuable CHaRM ( Center for Hard to Recycle Materials) processing facility too. Our local government and community leaders are committed to recycling in their own lives and for our collective quality of life. Check out all the info about our local ACC Recycling Division and American Recycles Week
 Commissioner Andy Herod @ #EABLAEXPO2016
 County Commisioners Sharyn Dickerson and Harry Sims at the #EABLAEXPO2016. If ANYONE in Athens knows the value of recycling it's Commissioner Sharyn Stewart Dickerson​. Before becoming the representative for District 1  she was Assistant Solid Waste Director, Unified Government of Athens-Clarke County (1997-2005, 1994-1996), Interim Solid Waste Director, Unified Government of Athens-Clarke County (1996-1997), Recycling Coordinator, Unified Government of Athens-Clarke County (1991-1994).
Logan Shyra​ heading out for a route to promote America Recycles Week Events in Athens.

You KNOW you're famous when people show up @ your house to take pictures of your trash!

 Brian Poole of Elf Power/ Of Montreal fame: aka The Late B.P. Helium of his own genius fame: aka TEXAR of Athens Cowboy Choir fame: is a MAJOR recycler! He hardly has ANY RASH! He recycles EVERYTHING!!!! 
 In fact, he is an avid biker too! A fellow folding biker - he has a sweet little green Brompton, and he also has a bunch of old bikes kicking around in his back shed.. sound familiar? But guess what?!
This Saturday is the FIX IT CLINIC!!!

 Here goes Fiona! Our newest team member! Out with the "America Recycles Week" banner we have also be riding the Let Us Compost banner. We won't be able to reduce the landfill volume with out including wide spread composting across out community. Let Us Compost makes that easy with bike powered curb side pick up service! We are running a promotion for them: if you see their banner on our carts, take a picture and post it to your Instagram feed you'll get your first month of service FREE!
 You KNOW you're famous when people show up @ your house to take pictures of your trash!

Nancy Denson, our mayor, has been recycling since before there was such a thing as "recycling". Her motto through out the years has been a classic favorite: " Use it Up, Wear it Out, Make Do, or Do With Out". She grew up in a large family, and her mother used to make her clothes from the cotton grain sacks that used to be so common. She has been saving her food scraps and separating her recyclables, since before the city offered curb side pick up. Now it is so easy! Everything goes in one bin, it's easy to wheel to the curb, and having smaller garbage cans and larger recycling bins really does so much to encourage the practice. More than anything, she embraces sustainability in her life, for instance, using cloth napkins and towels instead of paper towels!
In particular, as a public servant, she has advocated for support of our local recycling efforts and facilities. She sees our amazing single stream recycling, and Center for Hard to Recycle Materials as a major asset, not just for the health of our community, but also the economy. Recycling makes money for the county, and has encouraged our municipal government to make investments in the infrastructure the manage the materials. Having such a strong program, capable staff, energetic outreach and education coordinators, only increases the value of this division of our government. Even when the price the city can make for recyclables, for instance, glass, drops, she and others in our government are committed to maintaining the consistency and thoroughness of our local services.

 We have always admired Reign as a local leader. He's one of the most trusted realtors in town, and has made our town all better through the power of positive encouragement. As an advertising service we have to admire how effective and inspiring his billboard messages calling us to excel our own expectations, live up to our max creative potential and embrace opportunity. Of course he, and his whole family are in the habit of recycling at home, and he was generous to meet us at Automatic Pizza ( who also recycles) to give us a shot of his endless positive mojo for our ride around town celebrating America Recycles Day!
 You KNOW you're famous when people show up @ your house to take pictures of your trash!

Commissioner Melissa Link is a SHERO ZERO-WASTER! She recycles, she CHaRMs & she composts!

Okay! Having grown up watching Sesame Street... Just couldn't pass up the opportunity!
 Matt, owner of Old Pal, a favorite local watering holes, is committed to recycling! Of Course! It's so easy! There is a dumpster out back that he shares with everyone on the block! Hang out at your local pub & they'll take care of you!
 Bo @ Normal Hardware on Prince is in charge of managing all the recycling at the shop. These guys remember the days when recycling in Athens was uncommon, and can relate how much more waste they had. Recycling make sense for the business, saving them money!
 Hannah at Avid book shop took a minute to give us the thumbs up! Shop Local! Recycle! 
 Here's the handy-dandy larger than life sign breaking down what Habitat can and can't accept.
The crew at Habitat for Humanity are the masters of recycling here in Athens, and around the world for that matter! Our state rep, Mr. Spencer Frye is the director of the local Athens Habitat, and understands that the goals achieved through recycling, re-using and reducing our waste are what makes our community so livable, such an attractive place to live and work, and what reinforces not only progressive values focused on community integration, but also conservative values of preservation, personal responsibility, and good stewardship of our resources. If you can re-use it, get creative! If you can't re-use it, donate it and Habitat will put it to good use or make it available to someone who can. If it can't be re-used then recycle it. Throwing it away is the last resort!

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

School Visit Today in Watkinsville GA!

 We made a trip out to Colham Ferry Elementary School in Watkinsville Georgia today, with Kristen Baskin, owner of Let Us Compost. We met with 2 groups of 5th graders, about 50 students all together, and IT WAS AMAZING!!! The young people of this world really know what's going on!!!! We talked about the compost program they have going on, we talked about how 50% of what goes into American landfills, and how the anaerobic decomposition of organic matter creates methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, and climate change inducing force that we can do something to stop right away, everyday. We talked about how linking up with others to re-purpose, recycle, and get creative in our collective use of resources puts in contact with more and more people through positive, productive interactions, and activates our own potential in ways we would never imagine!

 They are all participating in voter education in the leading up to our national election next week, and it was so great to see them light up when we talked about how there are lots of other ways to engage their agency and live out tier civic life as well as voting. Tonight happens to be their Oconee County Mayor and Commission meeting, and we encouraged them to go and make public comment. We talked about how many of them love to ride bikes, and would ride bikes if their parents would let them, how their parents are worried that there are very few sidewalks and no bike lanes in their community. What a great thing to go talk to the Mayor and Commission about!  We really broke it down through question and answer sessions, and we practiced getting up and reading out loud climate change related facts to each other, in advance of being able to speak to the powers that be about making the changes in our paradigms that will make this world one with a livable future for them. It was so invigorating! Thank you so much for hosting me at your school!