Friday, May 13, 2016

Youth Bike Summit inspires teens to get involved in cycling initiatives

On May 4th, 2016, about 100 high school students, teachers, and decision-makers came together at the Markham Pan Am Centre for the first York Region Youth Bike Summit to talk about the future of cycling. The theme was "your vision, your future".

Justin Jones from the Share the Road Cycling Coalition opened the day by challenging participants to make a difference in their school and community.

Participants were asked....

The Environmental Club at St. Robert CHS were won the cycling video contest for this submission:

The following were recognized for their contributions to cycling in York Region
  • Cycling Leader Award - Nelson Mahmoudi, Newmarket High School
  • Cycling Group Award - York Mountain Biking Association
  • Bike-friendly High School - St. Robert Catholic High School

Olympian Isabelle Turcotte Baird gave an inspirational talk about the power of goal setting and perseverance.

Several interactive workshops were held throughout the day
  • School Bike Clubs and More
  • Design Your Dream Street

  • Advocacy 101

  • Cycling Jeopardy

  • Cycling Skills Training


  • Rock the Bike
  • York Region Public Health
  • York Region Transit / Viva
  • Real Deal Racing
  • York Mountain Biking Association
  • Summit Cycle Bike Shop

For me, the Youth Bike Summit was a chance to hear perspectives from high school students.  It was refreshing to meet teens interested in building bike racks at their school, or starting a bike club, or asking for protected bike lanes on Highway 7.  They get that cycling can be transformational!  I left the conference with a renewed sense of optimism that this generation of youth will help to shape a brighter future.

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