Opinion

Here's to a safe ride and good health

Fifteen months, five continents, two dozen countries, and a single cause: relief from asthma.

That’s the itinerary for World Bike For Breath, a bicycle tour of the world upon which islanders Lorenz Eber and Paula Holmes-Eber and their daughters will depart next week. The family is using the trip to raise awareness of the respiratory disease of asthma – from which 5,000 Americans die each year – and to raise $5 million in corporate and private sponsorships for research and treatment for asthmatic children and their families. (We profiled the Ebers’ plans in the Review last July, and you can find the story archived online at www.bainbridgereview.com).

They write: “...Each mile pedaled (is) a symbol of hope for the millions of children and adults, who like Paula, have gasped for each breath, for each day, for the dream of a cure.”

Beyond the support of sponsors, the quest is backed by a board of directors of folks you probably know, including B.I. Cycle owner Tom Clune, doctors Maureen Koval and Linda Warren of Virginia Mason Winslow Clinic, and JoAnna McAtee of Northwest Cable News.

The World Bike For Breath kick-off party will be held from 5:30-7 p.m. May 2 at REI’s flagship store over Seattle way, and new sponsors are encouraged. A penny a mile for the 15,000 trek comes out to a modest $150, with 100 percent of donations going to asthma research and treatment.

The Ebers will depart the country from New York City on May 7, International Asthma Day; first leg of journey is Greece and Turkey, and from there they’ll head around the globe.

We’re looking forward to regular dispatches from the road,

and islanders can track the family’s progress online at

www.bikeforbreath.org. Ride safe, friends.

***Ride locally

Speaking, or rather writing of bicycling, we should alert readers/riders to an event both fun and informative this

weekend. Saturday will see the second-annual Ride Around Winslow sponsored by Squeaky Wheels, beginning at 10 a.m. in the Bainbridge High School courtyard.

Advocates for pedal power are using the occasion to promote non-motorized travel and identify needed infrastructure improvements. The first event brought out about 40 riders, including Mayor Darlene Kordonowy and council folk Norm Wooldridge and Christine Nasser Rolfes.

Last year the focus was on downtown conditions, and revealed bike lanes strewn with rocks and debris, narrow shoulders, and other annoyances. This time out, the route turns north and west. Riders will see a soon(?)-to-be-improved non-motorized way linking the high school campus with Woodward and Sakai schools; newly constructed bike lanes on High School Road, west to Sportsman Club; and at least one of the public trails linking the Weaver Road area with Winslow Way and Grow Avenue (one along the waterfront). After a possible stop at the Senior Center to discuss pedestrian issues, the pack will head back through town along Ericksen Avenue.

Tires are already being inflated, and the egos of seasonal

riders shouldn’t be too deflated by the few hills that will be encountered along the route. The course will run about five miles, and some riders may split off at the end for longer treks of their own. Also, Chuck Beek of Squeaky Wheels promises homemade cookies for all.

It’s a good excuse for a spring ride – show up.

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Read the Nov 21
Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Browse the archives.

Friends to Follow

View All Updates