Published Somedays

Getting Connected ride

(updated: Sep 28, 2008)

This was the first Getting Connected ride which started at Ogden Elementary School and went down Middle Sound Loop. The turnout was huge. There were 115 riders, even more than the Critical Mass ride! Seeing this many people show up for a ride demonstrates the clear desire for more bike paths and lanes in our area that safely connect residences to schools and commercial areas.

The gathering

Getting Connected was started by folks that live in the Ogden area neighborhood, including Cape Fear Cyclist members and mtn bikers Ed and Michael. They realized the huge potential of connecting the neighborhood to the new Multi-Use Path that runs along Military Cutoff Rd. But more importantly, they saw that the new Ogden Elementary School they built had no facilities for kids to walk or bike to school.

It's obvious when you see it in person. Everything is designed around cars - parking, dropping kids off and picking them up. The planners probably never gave a gnat's thought to kids walking or biking, because, "why would you want to do that, it's way too dangerous and if we did that, a kids could be run over and then we'd get sued." But then there's this sidewalk with a set of steps that leads down to the road and just ends, like a bridge to nowhere. Maybe that's the plank they make the bad kids walk.

Unfortunately, nobody from the media showed up and County Commissioner Bill Kopp was supposed to participate. Maybe we should each send him a note to let him know that this is far more important than, say, giving a $4.2 million handout of taxpayer dollars for a cement plant to locate here and that we are not voting for any of them (except Nancy Pritchett who opposed the resolution).

Studies demonstrate that linear parks can increase nearby property values, which can in turn increase local tax revenues. This is one of many sources you can find in a simple Google search. Yet many misguided residents in our area complain of "corridors crime" and "safety" when proposals are put forth, including the very recent Kure Beach greenway plan shot down using the same old bogus arguments. In fact, Middle Sound Loop was slated to have sidewalks thanks to Senator Julie Boseman but then residents complained and it was shot down (note: need source). So now kids are unable to walk to school, even if they live less than a block away, unless they want to walk on the road (there's an image for ya) or slosh along a drainage ditch.

The founders of Getting Connected

I think this is going to become a monthly event. Things are happening here. We can make Wilmington like a Portland or Eugene, OR. We just need a lot of people pushing our government leaders.


Filed Under: General Entries > North Carolina > Wilmington


1. Ed Mondello AKA GlideBikes said...

Thanks for all of you who participated and lets make the next one even bigger. We need more safe routes not more drilling for oil and bailouts for Wall Street. Not only is biking better for the environment but it also promotes better health and less obesity. I just got back from the bike show in Vegas (Interbike) and the busiest booths had products based on commuting and cargo bikes to carry goods and kids. The company's that make those products are overwhelmed by demand . The rest of the country gets it biking is not just for a bunch of spandex wearing road racers and thrill seeking mountain bikers. It's an alternate form of transportation ,even Boston's Mayor Menino gets it
If A City that has snow 1/3 of the year gets it Wilmington needs to pay attention. As a group we showed it matters with 115 riders and 500 signatures but we need more support, keep spreading the word, have everyone you know sign the online petition And keep posted for future rides.

Sep 28, 2008 @ 11:21 PM

2. Michael said...

Fun Ride! Many thanks to all who attended ....also, missing from the "Founders" photo was Bret Russell.

Sep 29, 2008 @ 5:26 AM

3. Peg said...

It was a great ride. I felt like such a part of a community; people of all ages...some have lived in the area for decades and others just moved here. Let's do it again!

Sep 29, 2008 @ 7:33 AM

4. David (England). said...

Just to say a big thank you from Phil's large family in England and family members in the USA we all appreciate the time and effort you all took in getting on your bikes and getting out there it does help the family to know that there are genuine decent people out there who actually care about their community it is a sad fact that many places in the world in this day and age don't give a hoot! Anyway god bless you all from the Tidmarsh family in England.

Sep 29, 2008 @ 4:54 PM

5. Seuss said...

1) Sorry, you can't vote for Nancy Pritchett in November. She finished 4th place in the top 3 advance Republican Primary. It'll be Kopp, Davis and Jason Thompson running on the R line.

2) Eugene has been a bike friendly city for a long time. I passed through there 20 years ago and was amazed at all the bikes, bike lanes, bike racks etc. Then the next day my bike got stolen. 20 years later I still hold a grudge against the whole city.

Sep 29, 2008 @ 8:23 PM

6. eric said...

Is this happening again in Oct? Or just a one time deal?

Oct 7, 2008 @ 5:43 PM

7. Michael said...

It will happen again in Oct. Check for upcoming events.

Oct 7, 2008 @ 8:29 PM


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