New bike rack, area at Everson Library
by the Foothills Gazette
EVERSON – The Everson Library celebrated a new bike rack and parking area on Saturday, Oct. 16 with a ribbon cutting event and bike parade.
Several years ago, Mary Cole, a lead volunteer with the project, began asking the Friends of the Everson Library Board to consider replacing the bike rack. The former bike rack accommodated older style bikes, and Cole thought a newer frame would allow for various bicycle types, including new lightweight frames and those cyclists with child trailers or other accessories. The board stated they were willing to spend money if Cole came up with some suggestions, she said.
Cole then spent time searching out different racks in Whatcom County and Abbotsford, B.C., and also researched recommendations from bicycle groups. “There is quite a bit of info on the web… to what different cities have done in regard to bicycle parking,” she said.
Locally, Cole said she sought the opinion of Ellen Barton, of EverybodyBIKE, a Whatcom SmartTrips program. Barton felt the rack Cole selected was a good choice at a reasonable price. “It’s a little bit nerve-wracking to spend over $1,000 of someone else’s money!” Cole said.
Funds for the bike rack came from the Friends’ ongoing used book sale, as well as special book sales throughout the year in conjunction with community events.
“We are very fortunate to have an ongoing source of boxes of donated books from Henderson Books in Bellingham. They have been wonderful in contributing to our efforts at fundraising by keeping us supplied all year round!” Cole said.
The Friends group received volunteer help including the City of Everson pulling out bushes and ground prep, Dave Wiggins pouring and finishing the new cement area, and Dennis Shaw assembling and installing the rack.
Everson Library Manager Eileen Shaw felt they should celebrate the new bicycle area in some way. Following a suggestion from Barton, they decided to hold a bicycle parade from the Nooksack Valley Middle School to the library, where decorated bikes, riders, and the cycling chicken (EverybodyBIKE’s mascot) were greeted by supporters. WCLS Director Joan Airoldi said a few words and Cole cut the ribbon. Ed Penfield played guitar, refreshments were provided and a slide show was shown. Bicycling brochures on topics such as correct helmet fit, bicycle traffic laws, and cycling routes were also given out.
“The word on the street is that the Friends may have a bicycle shelter on their agenda for next year,” Cole said. “Wouldn’t that be an excellent addition in our rainy part of the world? We are so appreciative of our Friends group!