Womxn's Bike Month
The Cascade policy and advocacy team is shining a light on the unique experience of women, trans and people identified as femme (womxn) in biking and bike advocacy.
Throughout Bike Everywhere Month, this May, we’re teaming up with our partners to host and promote a range of womxn-focused and womxn-led bike rides, trainings and social events. We aim to empower, educate, and encourage women/trans/femme identifying bicycling riding persons.
Why Womxn's Bike Month?
Across the US and the greater Seattle area, womxn are underrepresented in biking… womxn make up just 25% of people biking, or speaking up for biking. That means our community bike lanes, trails and greenways are places where there are measurably fewer womxn than men. Womxn are underrepresented in bike advocacy too… which means womxn’s voices are largely lacking in conversations that shape the bike lanes and trials of tomorrow.
Why are Womxn Underrepresented in Biking and Bike Advocacy?
There’s no single reason for this trend – both cultural barriers and a lack of consideration for womxn’s needs in this space contribute. The top three reasons that are cited consistently are:
- Lack of safe, protected and connected bike networks to ride on. While important to all people on bikes, in studies womxn have been identified as relatively more concerned about protected bicycle infrastructure. Furthermore, womxn are more likely to be primary caregivers and are more likely to consider the needs of children when asked to judge whether bike infrastructure is safe and comfortable to ride on.
- Harassment from other road users – people biking, and people driving. While this is an issue for everyone on a bike, it disproportionately impacts womxn who are less likely to ride due to the harassment they may face.
- Lack of confidence and/or feelings of not “fitting in” as “someone who bikes”.
We invite everyone to join us this Bike Everywhere Month for a womxn-focused or womxn-led bike ride, training or social. These will be safe spaces to address and discuss womxn and biking-specific issues.
Want to learn more?
Below are some great resources that further shed light on issues that are unique to womxn who bike...and why these problems matter to all of us.
- Women cyclists take over Queens Boulevard on Sunday to highlight the gender gap in the city’s cycling community (AM New York)
- Aviva Stephens, Bikes are for Boys - Cycling While Woman (Seattle Bike Blog)
- Why don’t more women cycle? (We are Cycling UK)
- There's a Biking Gender Gap. And It Has a Real Economic Impact. (The Atlantic)
- An Explanation for the Gender Gap in Biking (CityLab)
- The National Push to Close the Cycling Gender Gap (Streetsblog USA)
Womxn's Bike Month Event Calendar
Moxie Monday Monthly Ride
When: Monday, May 7 (meet at 6:30 pm, and ride at 7:00 pm)
Where: Seattle Center Fountain: 305 Harrison St, Seattle, WA 98109
What: Monthly social ride for folks who identify as women, trans, or femme. Social pace.
Women/Trans/Femme Adventure Happy Hour
When: Wednesday, May 9 (5:00-8:00 pm)
Where: 558 1st Ave S, Seattle, WA 98104
What: Connect with the female/all-trans/gnc/femme identified adventure community at Swift Industries’ manufacturing space. Geek out about bicycle camping trips, share favorite routes, encourage each other with tips and skills, and just bask in the company of like-minded nature loving folks.
Beach Bonfire Ride
When: Friday, May 11 (meet at 6:15 pm, and ride at 6:30 pm )
Where: G&O Family Cyclery: 8558 Greenwood Ave N, Seattle, WA 98103
What: Social bike ride hosted by G&O Family Cyclery. Meet at G&O Family Cyclery and ride to Golden Gardens, for a bonfire on the beach. This ride is for women and their friends (i.e. all are welcome!)
Cyclofemme Mother's Day Ride
When: Sunday, May 13 (10:00 am - 2:00 pm)
Where: Volunteer Park, 1247 15th Ave E, Seattle WA 98122
What: Looking for a fun way to celebrate the mothers in your life? Come out to Family Bike’s annual Mother's Day ride! We'll go for a leisurely, kid friendly ride, and finish with a picnic lunch.
Finn Hill Neighborhood Family Ride
When: Sunday, May 13 (1:00 - 4:00 pm)
Where: 8106 NE 138th St, Kirkland, WA 98034
What: Join this family friendly event, full of different activities. From 1:00 - 2:00pm, there will be a bike swap and tune-up. From 2:00 - 3:00 pm, join a family ride from a park to two schools on Finn Hill, through some residential streets and to grocery shopping center. At 3:00 pm, we’ll head back to the park. Share in the joy of riding to school and your community.
Movie Night at Scarecrow Video
When: Tuesday, May 15 (6:00 - 8:30 pm)
Where: Scarecrow Video , 5030 Roosevelt Way NE, Seattle, WA 98105
What: Join us at Scarecrow Video for a chick flick: everyone is welcome!
We're watching the 1983 classic, BMX Bandits. The storyline: Two young BMX pros and a friend (Nicole Kidman) become entangled with a group of bank robbers after discovering a carton of walkie-talkies. Win prizes, watch a rad biking flick and learn about ways to have a great Bike Month!
Bike Everywhere Day Womxns Bike Trains (multiple locations below)
When: Friday May 18 (Morning commute)
Why: Engage with womxn who bike and womxn allies as part of Bike Everywhere Day. Ride from Ravenna or West Seattle to the downtown Seattle Rally for the Basic Bike Network.
Ravenna to Downtown Seattle Bike Everywhere Day Womxns Bike Train
When: Friday, May 18 (Meets: 7:15 am. Arrives: 8:15 am)
Where: Meet at Ravenna Third Place Books, 6504 20th Ave NE, Seattle, WA 98115
What: Bike from Ravenna to City Hall Plaza in downtown Seattle with a group of womxn and womxn allies on bikes. Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org. Ride cancels if there are no responses.
West Seattle to Downtown Seattle Bike Everywhere Day Womxns Bike Train
When: Friday, May 18 (Meets: 7:30 am. Arrives: 8:15 am)
Where: Meet at West Seattle Bike Connection’s Bike Everywhere Day Station near west end of the Spokane St Bridge
What: Bike from West Seattle to City Hall Plaza in downtown Seattle with a group of womxn and womxn allies on bikes. Please RSVP to email@example.com. Ride cancels if there are no responses.
Fremont to Redmond Bike Everywhere Day Womxns Bike Train
When: Friday, May 18 (Meets: 7:00 am. Arrives: 9:00 am)
Where: Meet at Cascade Flagship Bike Everywhere Day Station (south side of the Fremont bridge).
What: Bike from Fremont to Redmond’s Overlake Transit Station via Burke-Gilman and 520 trails to with a group of womxn on bikes. Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org. Ride cancels if there are no responses.
When: Tuesday, May 22 (meet at 5:30 pm)
Where: Pioneer Square, Seattle WA 98104
What: Curious about e-bikes, bikeshare, or both? Join Cascade and Transportation Choices Coalition for this womxn’s only event features a quick “how-to” use bikeshare, and a group bike share ride along the 2nd Ave protected bike lane, concluding in Belltown. Ride and make new friends!
When: Wednesday, May 23 (starts at 6:30 pm)
Where: Cascade Bicycle Center, 7787 62nd Ave NE, Seattle, WA 98115
What: This class is part of the Cascade-hosted She Bikes series of classes for womxn to gain skills and experience riding and maintaining bikes. Pre-registration required via cascade.org
When: Saturday, May 26 (10:00 am - 2:00 pm)
Where: Gas Works Park, 2101 N Northlake Way, Seattle, WA 98103
What: Join this family friendly ride, hosted by Family Bike, as we try to reach “kidical mass.” Ride from Gas Works Park to the Ballard Locks for a potluck picnic. We will be riding along the Burke Gilman until we get to the Missing Link where we will be riding on the street. This is a busy road so you may wish to scoop up your little ones and carry them for this segment.
Womxns’ Downtown Seattle Happy Hour - there’s an Advocate in all of us!
When: Thursday May 31 (5:00 - 7:00 pm)
Where: Elephant & Castle: 1415 Fifth Ave Seattle, WA 98101
What: Co-hosted by Cascade, Seattle Neighborhood Greenways, and The Urbanist, join us for happy hour that’s just for womxn who bike, or want to. Hear from rad womxn leaders in bike advocacy and close out Bike Month in style.