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May 11, 2013

Bike to Work Day marks fifth year

By Mark Boshnack Staff Writer
The Daily Star

---- — A Wednesday event will give participants a chance to improve their health and the environment, an organizer said.

Otsego County Conservation Association special project manager Martha Clarvoe said this is the fifth year for the Otsego County Bike to Work Day. It’s coordinated by the Otsego Regional Cycling Advocates, a committee of OCCA.

Nearly 30 locations are participating, including Bassett Healthcare Network and A.O. Fox Hospital, Opportunities for Otsego and many area schools.

More than 300 people are usually involved, ranging from students to business employees, she said. A lot will depend on the weather, but many people see the event as the start of the summer bicycle season.

Bike to Work Day is a natural partnership for Bassett, spokeswoman Karen Huxtable said Friday. The organization has a very strong commitment to both employee wellness and being as “green” a healthcare organization as possible, she said.

It’s another opportunity to promote biking and walking as ways to get some exercise, burn calories and reduce fuel consumption by forgoing the car, she said.

“ORCA is encouraging county residents to bike or walk to work to the extent possible on May 15 in particular, but, in general, as often as possible.” said Dennis Savoie, a founding member of the group. “It would be good for the environment and our personal health if we biked more often to other destinations as well, he said.

This is the first year that effort is coordinated with with National Bike Challenge, that is an event sponsored by the League of American Bicyclists, Clarvoe said. Links can be found to the relevant sites at the OCCA website, by clicking on “ORCA” on the left hand side of the page.

All of those involved participating Wednesday, or through Sept 30, are encourage to log their miles on the National Bike Challenge site, she said

To join ORCA or to obtain more information about Bike to Work Day, contact Clarvoe at 607- 547-4020 or by email at martha.clarvoe@mail.occainfo.org, or at www.occainfo.org.