Melissa and her kids love biking to school and work

Commuter(s): Melissa Smith and her kids, Alden and Elizabeth
Employer/Commute Challenge Team: Jamestown Tribal Center employees
Years participated: This will be her second Commute Challenge

Sometimes, a simple invitation to try something new can have a significant impact in your life.

Melissa Smith started biking to work during last year's Commute Challenge.

For Melissa Smith and her children, ages 6 and 10, that invitation came a year ago, when a coworker invited her to join the Commute Challenge for some friendly competition.

“My children were happy to participate in biking to school with me in the mornings,” said Melissa. “Biking with my kids has always been a fun activity for us.  We had biked around the Pacific Northwest many other times but last year was our first time commuting to work and school.”

Melissa said because they live in the small town of Sequim, Wash., her commute is short and she feels safe riding with her kids.

“The commute to my work is about three miles and has bike paths located on the roadway.  There are crossing guards at the one busy street to get to the kids’ school, who are always very helpful in getting us across to the other side in the busy school morning traffic,” she said. “I have always felt safe when biking with them to school.”

Additionally, Melissa found that biking to school and work is convenient and simpler than most people think.

“[At the school,] we lock their bikes together and I continue on from there to my work, which is not far from their school,” she said. “When I get off at 5 p.m., I bike to their daycare, which is on the same block as their school, we walk over to get their bikes from school and get home by dinner time."

Alden, 6, and Elizabeth, 10, love biking to school.

The family had so much participating in the challenge that Bike Month has become a new tradition for the family.

“My goal for bike month will be to once again ride to and from school and work with my children. In addition to that, I’m going to add fun outing rides to other places in our town where we would normally drive to,” said Melissa. “We love biking to our destinations!  I am so thankful to [my colleague] for turning me on to Bike Month and talking me into participating.”

This year, Melissa is paying it forward by serving as a Commute Challenge team captain and inspiring other people to start bike commuting. She plans to recruit colleagues through spreading around flyers and creating a Facebook page.

“Sharing my own personal story from last year – and mentioning how much my children enjoy it – will help people see that it really is simpler than some people might think,” said Melissa.  “If they just try it once, I know they will love it, just like we do!”


Are you signed up for the Commute Challenge presented by Adobe yet? Join today and discover the simple joy of bicycling yourself!