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2/6/2008: Community Media Newstip: Snow Biking, and other events
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Snow Biking, and other events

Newstip Date: 02-06-2008

There's a bike ride planned for tonight -- but only if it snows enough.

There's a standing "snow biking" ride planned for any day when it snows more than two inches -- leaving at 7 p.m. from the bike-friendly Handlebar, 2311 W. North -- listed at Chicago Bike Winter's very full schedule of events.

Chicago bike advocates don't go south for the winter, and this weekend has several events scheduled.

Friday, February 8, Break The Gridlock hosts a Show and Tell at the Bloom Inn, 2418 W. Bloomington, from 7 p.m. to midnight, a forum for advocates of "appropriate transportation" to share news and views.

Saturday at the Hyde Park Art Center, 5020 S. Cornell, West Town Bikes and the Chicagoland Bicycle Federation hold a forum on creating community bike programs. West Town Bikes grew out of a youth bike program and has provided youth programming for youth in a variety of settings -- and expanded to offer classes and clinics for adults, ranging from bike mechanics and safety to winter biking.

"We want to encourage people who may bike for recreation to take the next step and use your bike for basic transportation," said Alex Wilson. The Hyde Park program starts at 1:30 p.m.

Also Saturday, the 100th annual Chicago Auto Show will be the scene for the 9th annual Auto Show Shutdown demonstration, including a bicycle parade with crash test dummies and a car alarm symphony.

Started by cyclists associated with Critical Mass, the Shutdown now includes individuals associated with groups advocating for mass transit and pedestrians -- and in the last few years there have been similar demonstrations at car shows in Detroit, New York, Los Angeles, and several cities in Europe.

The emphasis this year will be the fatalities caused by automobiles. According to Dan Korn, three million people have been killed by automobiles in the U.S. in the century since the first auto show. "Even the green cars they're promoting still kill people," he said. "The auto industry needs to be held accountable for the people killed by its products, the same way the cigarette industry is."
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