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Vol 9, #23 - In 10 Years.

Velo Cape Breton is the Island wide voice of cyclists, working for better cycling in our great Island. We have made significant progress since our formation in 2004.  Visit our website that will introduce you to some of our activities.   If you have any questions, suggestions, or want to contribute to this eNewsletter,  please contact us at (902) 562-8137 or

Joining VCB is a proof of support to the community development and advocacy work done by the hard working volunteers of this club.  Your $10. will go a long way.  It's your 2012 legacy to the rising generation.  To join click here.

Help us make Cape Breton Island a better place to live!

In this Edition

  • Editorial
  • Rides Captain Corner
  • Heads Up
  • VCB on NEW Facebook Page
  • Bike Week 2012
  • National CAN-BIKE Nomination
  • Nova Scotia Cycling Summit
  • Keep the Keys, Dad...
  • Changes can Occur With Very Little
  • Video of the Week
  • Special Invite from The Birches at Ben Eoin
  • Two Welsh Girls in a Pub


There are only two products that I believe every rider should own. The first is a helmet. Not just for your protection—whatever you want to do to your head is fine with me—but I don’t want to carry you 10 miles to the trailhead if you crash in front of me and start flopping around like a fish.


The second is a bell. 



IN 10 YEARS...

In 10 years, I'll be close to 80... if I'm still around.  I will certainly need more powerful glasses to read, my diet would have changed for lighter food to digest and hopefully I will still be able to ride my bike and not be restricted to driving in the confines of a steel box.  

10 years is a very short time.  

We tend to forget that in 10 years, a 6 year old is going through a very important developmental period of his/her life where lifelong good habits take roots and develop... and unfortunately bad habits too..  Youth development is a journey that automatically involves all of the people around a youth, a process in which family and community must actively participate for the youth to be happy, healthy and successful.  Youth development goes beyond the academic skills and competencies which are the focus of most schools.  

10 years ago, Velo Cape Breton made the news advocating for bicycle infrastructure on the reconstruction of Kings Road in Sydney.  The then 6-yr old is now 16.  In 10 years, little to no opportunities have been provided to these kids to develop their biking skills and learn to love this alternative and healthy mode of transportation.  Most of them drive cars and/or are being transported by friends or mum and dad's taxi.  10 years doesn't seem that long but it is a make or break period for thousands of them.  What I want to say is that in the last 10 years, we lost a generation of kids.  

In my book, it's a tragedy.

According to a 2004 Heart and Stroke Foundation of Nova Scotia report, statistic shows that 39% of men and 58% of women are physically inactive in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality.  Cape Breton also has one of the highest obesity rates in the country... and the rates are rising...  same with new case of diabetes...   

Municipal, provincial and federal governments are showing some signs of support to community transformation initiated by volunteer groups and advocates; it is my wish, and the wish of many of you I imagine, that the development of policies and undertakings be accelerated so that in 10 years, there won't be enough bike racks in town to hold all the bikes at businesses, workplaces and public venues.  

The Seeker to the Holy One:  Tell me the answer to this great spiritual question.   Is there life after death?

The Holy One:  The great spiritual question is not - Is there life after death? ...  The great spiritual question of them all is:  Is there life before death?  

Much of the old belief was concerned about life after death.  In our present age we need to be concerned about life before death.  The reinventing of all our institutions is the great work we need to be about.



IMPROMPTU RIDE to Boisdale Community Hall for the PANCAKE & MAPLE SYRUP BREAKFAST - Saturday, April 14, 2012, 9am-12 Noon.

Get on your bike and start from where ever you want (see below) and ride to the Boisdale Community Hall.  Arrange to arrive by 10:30 - 11:00am.  

Pancakes, "Highland Gold" Maple Syrup, Homemade Maple Baked Beans, Sausage, Tea Biscuits and Toast, Tea, Coffee & Juice.

Adults $7, Children $5


"Highland Gold" is a "real local product"  made right here in the Boisdale Hills!  

Starting points to consider...

Sydney River (via Barrachois Mtn) to Boisdale:  31 km

North Sydney (via Georges River, Long Island) to Boisdale:  30 km

Hagget's Store to Boisdale:  20 km

Bottom of Barrachois Mountain to Boisdale: 8.5 km

Barrachois Provincial Park to Boisdale: 7.5 km

Iona to Boisdale:  28 km


Note:  The forecast calls for sun and clouds.  For a first time out, maybe the bottom of Barrachois Mtn will be a good choice.  This is where Micheline and I will start from at 10 a.m. 



CAN-BIKE II  Bicycle courses 

Session #1 - April 20-22 

Room for three more participants for a maximum of six.


Session #2 - April 27-29

Room for two more participants for a maximum of six.

All info and registration on the VCB renovated website at: 



THE KID WITH A BIKE - Thursday, April 19.  

CAPE BRETON FILM SERIES.  Drama: Abandoned by his father, a young boy escapes a state-run youth farm, and persuades the town hairdresser to foster him on weekends.  Plays one show only, 7 p.m., Thursday, April 19, at the Empire Theatres Studio 10, 325 Prince Street, Sydney. Tickets $11, students $7.



Kelly’s Klimb #1 -  Sunday April 22.

Time trial - 7km distance up 265 metres.  Determine your “opening-of-the-season” baseline; compare at end-of-season climb on the same route (Sept. 23). 

Meet at:  New Harris Road by KOA campg’nd - 9:15am Start time 10:00 am.   info: bighead(at)

Followed by St. Anns Bay Loop or to Baddeck & back.



Bike Clinic, Swap and Sale

Minor maintenance/repairs by our volunteer mechanics.  Sell/buy bike, parts, accessories.  Coffee and Breaky on site.

Farmers Market,  Coxheath,  May 12,  8:30 to 12:00



Lobster Roll Relay - Sunday, June 17.  -  An Update.

  • Course has been determined. 
  • Arrangements completed with volunteers at stopover locations in Mira Road (Firehall) New Waterford (Firehall), Glace Bay (DAM Fitness), Mira Gut.
  • Permits and support from Cape Breton Regional Police obtained.  
  • Promotion posters, Registration forms printed and in circulation.
  • VCB Website updated with new information and registration form.

Heads up!  If  you already exercise and have an active lifestyle, just need to set your goal of one to four legs of the Lobster Roll.  You can start from whatever location you want to reach you goal but the best way is certainly to recruit a few friends and do the Lobster Roll as a team.  It's going to be lots of fun.



The new Page is now up and running and we will eventually be closing this Velo Cape Breton Association Group. We'd ask you to please 'Like' the new Page to be kept up to date on Velo Cape Breton's exciting rides, tours, events, socials, courses, bike routes, advocacy work to help make Cape Breton Island more Bicycle Friendly! The NEW Page can be found here:


You too can post and comment on updates, chat with everyone at once. 



CBRM is putting up $100. grants to community groups/organization such as youth groups, school clubs, sports and fitness groups, seniors' clubs and cultural groups to organize and hosts events during Bike Week 2012,  June 2 - 10, 2012.  See poster below...


VCB is fully supporting this initiative.  Should you need help, please do not hesitate to contact us. We'll see what we can do...



Two weeks ago, at a Canadian Cycling Association/CAN-BIKE meeting in Toronto, Bob White, newly named National Examiner was "appointed" to oversee Atlantic Canada (NS, NB, PEI, NL) with the growth and expansion of CAN-BIKE. 

The Canadian Cycling Association (CCA) is increasing its support to the CAN-BIKE program, with the main focus being towards children ages 9-13. 

The present effort has a nation wide focus brought about through the opportunity to partner with the Public Health Agency of Canada on a project called ‘Active and Safe Kids’, and a small army of Instructors is needed to help deliver this initiative over the next year. 

As the goal is first to increase the number of instructors in order to deliver Kids CAN-BIKE Programs across the maritimes, the contribution of parents and volunteers, is more than needed.  (ref.: Editorial)

To become a CAN-BIKE Instructor, candidates must go through CAN-BIKE 2 Certification.  There's a sense of urgency here as the money is there, the kids are getting older and CCA is on board with a permanent employee to make this happen, something that was not there before. 

Please don't let this opportunity go away.  

There are three CAN-BIKE 2 Courses schedules for Sydney area in the next while; two by the end of April, one by early June.  

For further information, email or call:  562-8137


by: Gordon Tate, Active living and Active Transportation Coordinator,  

On behalf of the 2012 Nova Scotia Cycling Summit: Creating a Cycling Culture organizing committee and the Lunenburg-Queens Recreation Directors Association, we are pleased to invite you to join us at this year's Summit in Mahone Bay on May 5.

Session highlights include:

  • Creating champions of Change
  • Women in Cycling
  • Retailers Panel
  • Cycling Tourism
  • Land-use agreements
  • Kids in Cycling
  • Bicycling Nova Scotia Strategic Planning

Fun includes:

  • Bike Yoga
  • Bike Polo
  • Road Ride
  • Trail Ride
  • And an evening dinner at the Mug and Anchor with Pecha Kuchas

The full agenda and registration form are available at


Please forward this to any of your contacts who you think would like to attend.

We look forward to hosting you next month. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.


Gord Tate


Ed:  VCB has a delegation going to the Summit.  Interested?  email or phone  562-8137...  


According to a new study from the U.S. PIRG, American are driving less -- and the trend is being driven by the next generation.  From 2001 and 2009, the average annual number of vehicle-miles traveled by young people (16 to 34-year-olds) decreased by 23 percent. Read the full report, Transportation and the New Generation: Why Young People Are Driving Less and What It Means for Transportation Policy, here.

Ed:  After riding by Riverview High School yesterday and seeing the incredible number of cars parked there, I don’t think it’s the case in our neck of the wood.  

How about the high school in your community?    



source:  comment on

It's not that hard, and it does not take too long. Boston was voted the worst cycling city in the USA three years ago (by some cycling magazine, not sure which). 3 years later it's rated like a "bronze" or "silver" for bike access. 

It takes a little money and a lot of courage from city leaders. There's a lot that re-striping a road can do. 

Once you get a few riders on the road - a small critical mass if you will - drivers adapt, roads get friendlier, and more people try cycling.  That grows support leading to bolder changes in infrastructure…


The Dutch Cycling Embassy. It's only 7 minutes of nice travel in the Netherlands.



Chef Malcolm invites everyone to The Taste of Ireland, Friday April 20th.

See Menu below...



I was in a pub on Saturday night. Had a few.  I noticed two large girls by the bar.  They both had strong accents so I said: “Hi,are you two girls from Scotland ?”

One of them chirped: “It’s WALES you friggin' idiot!”

So I immediately apologized and said: “Sorry, are you two whales from Scotland ?”

Then the lights went out !!!!



Jacques Cote

Editor, Velo Cape Breton eNewsletter

April 12th, 2012

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