Bike Michiana

resources, news, observations and ideas about bicycling in the Michiana area

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BMC Seeking Volunteers for New Positions

Posted by Jeff Nixa on September 29, 2009

The Bike Michiana Coalition is seeking persons to fill two new formal roles in our organization: a volunteer Membership Coordinator and a volunteer Grant-Writing Coordinator. Job descriptions of the two positions are below along with the contact persons.

A more organized membership and grant-writing capacity will help BMC take its activities to the next level in scope and effectiveness in the Michiana Community.

All of us on the BMC board, committees and in affiliate groups are volunteers. The passion of these cyclists, and their willingness to take turns leading the peloton of our Coalition have been the simple reason for our success so far. Thank you for helping us continue to grow as an unstoppable team of citizen-cylclists.

Please forward this notice to any person you think may be interested and qualified.


Jeff Nixa, President
Bike Michiana Coalition

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Posted in Advocacy | Leave a Comment »

Paul Taylor awarded Northern Indiana Leadership Award

Posted by Jeff Nixa on June 4, 2009

Bicycle Indiana is pleased to announce Paul Taylor as the recipient of its Northern Indiana Leadership Award.  Paul was nominated for this award by the Bicycle Indiana board for his leadership toward changing Indiana’s antiquated bike/traffic safety legislation, through the 2008-09 bill which became known as SB553.   Bicycle Indiana’s executive director Nancy Tibbett presented the award to Paul during Monday’s Bike to Work Week activities in downtown South Bend.
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Posted in Advocacy, News | 4 Comments »

New Michiana Bike Route Map Published

Posted by Jeff Nixa on May 30, 2009

Update: an 11 MB PDF of the map is now available for download.

The first-ever comprehensive St. Joseph/Elkhart Counties bike map is now available.  A joint effort of the Bike Michiana Coalition, local government, business and university, the folding map will first be distributed to cyclists who attend the South Bend Bike to Work Week events, June 1-5.  Afterwards, the map will be available throughout Michiana in local bike shops and other locations yet to be determined.  A free copy of the map ($5 value) will also be provided every person signing up for an annual membership in the Bike Michiana Coalition.

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Posted in Advocacy, Facilities, Infrastructure, News, Routes | 3 Comments »

BMC’s Energizer Bunnies Given Pfeil Award

Posted by Jeff Nixa on May 21, 2009

Judy and Bill Lee, Vice-President and Treasurer respectively of the Bike Michiana Coalition (BMC), were recently awarded the YWCA’s prestigous Donna Pfeil award for volunteerism in Michiana.  The focus of this year’s award was the Lee’s ongoing work organizing and bike-route planning  for Run Jane Run, the premier all-women’s run/bike/golf event  in Michiana. 

Since 1903, the YWCA of St. Joseph County has been the leading advocate for women and children in our community.  Through a combination of service and social action the Y reaches out to women who are seeking solutions to abusive situations, fighting chemical dependency, in need of job training and education and who want to improve their lives for themselves and their children. 

Congratulations Bill and Judy!

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments »

“Recently Unemployed”: The Hottest new Bike Week Team!

Posted by Jeff Nixa on May 21, 2009

Are you a Bike to Work fan with no job to bike to?   Feeling the crunch of the economy in spite of your commuter savings?   This could be your opportunity to shine on the newly formed Bike to Work team called “Recently Unemployed”.   Join last year’s mileage leader Rob Shellhamer and others as we pedal our way to our next career.

If you have been downsized, rightsized, outsourced or just plain laid-off, you know your new job is to find a new job and it is more work than any work you have done in the past. So why not combine your fitness/green/savings routine with your new job search?

Join the team and log your miles to outplacement centers, interviews, networking events as well as the evening rides scheduled for Bike to Work Week. With a little more time on our hands, we should be able to coast right past all those regular nine-to-fivers out there! Bike miles to volunteer for Bike to Work events will count as well!

To join simply go to and click on “Corporate Challenge”. From there click on “Click here to register your commuting team or register with a team”, then “Join a team” and find the hottest team in the area: “Recently Unemployed”. You will register with a login and password and be all set to ride. Now get out there and ride to your new career!

Posted in Advocacy, Events, Group Rides: Special | 2 Comments »

School Bike Safety Program Begins

Posted by Jeff Nixa on May 14, 2009

On Monday, May 11th members of the Bike Michiana Coalition, Michiana Bike Association and a South Bend police officer gathered at Warren Primary School in a gymnasium full of curious third-graders to co-host the first area school bike safety program.  

School principal Carla Killelea welcomed organizer Judy Lee and friends to an hour-long session with all 81 third-grade students at the school.   As they sat cross-legged in a large circle on the gym floor, students heard from South Bend bicycle patrol police officer Cpl. Aaron Cassel, who with his fully loaded police bike demonstrated proper bike safety and gear and answered nonstop questions from a rapt audience.   Students were urged to wear bike helmets at all times, obey all traffic laws and only ride bikes properly fit and tuned for safety. 

In return, every student left with a custom-fitted new bike helment, thanks to joint funding from Michiana Bike Association and Bicycle Indiana.   Students also learned to wear bright noticeable clothing, learned basic hand signals, proper with-traffic lane riding and not to ride after dark without proper lighting and reflective gear.

Lee, Vice President of the Bike Michiana Coalition and a board member of the Michiana Bike Association, initiated the event as a pilot project for what is hoped to become a district wide school bike safety program in the upcoming school year for all third graders in the South Bend area. 

Third graders were chosen as the best level of education for several reasons: children of this age are beginning to ride bikes away from the home and driveway, actually getting out onto streets; third graders are curious and interested in bikes;  and they are still ‘teachable’ and intrigued by e.g. police officers/gear.   Lee and the others will be seeking funding support for next years’ broader school safety program.

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments »

NIMBA Members Toil in the Woods for Better Trails

Posted by Jeff Nixa on May 5, 2009

While some of you were relaxing on long, smooth, well-hydrated road rides last weekend, members of the Northern Indiana Mountain Bike Association (NIMBA) spent the weekend in blue jeans and sweaty shirts hacking away at massive vines, downed trees, brush and brambles through the woods at Potato Creek State Park during their annual trail cleanup day.  In two days of work during the Friday-Sunday overnight camping event, a handful of NIMBA members completed 3 major trail “re-routes” around problem trail areas and built a 53 foot wooden boardwalk over a swampy area.  All this after similar work recently at Lawless Park and Rum Village. 

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Posted in Advocacy, Mountain Biking | 3 Comments »

BMC to be Represented on South Bend’s “Green Ribbon Commission”

Posted by Jeff Nixa on April 21, 2009

The Bike Michiana Coalition will be represented on  South Bend’s new “Green Ribbon Commission”, an effort by Mayor Steve Luecke and the City to “reduce energy usage, trim costs, beautify the city and help save the planet.”   BMC president Jeff Nixa was invited by the Mayor to represent the local cycling community.   South Bend’s new bicycle coordinator, Chris Dressel, will also be serving on the commission.  

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New IRS Bicycle Commuter Benefit in Effect

Posted by Jeff Nixa on February 12, 2009

The new IRS bicycle commuter benefit went into effect January 1, 2009.   The Bicycle Commuter Act is a tax incentive for both employers and employee bicycle-commuters, allowing employers to offer a benefit of up to $20 a month for those who regularly commute to work by bike.

The benefit is intended to offset the costs of bike commuting.  Eligible expenses include such things as a new bike purchase, regular maintenance costs, and the purchase of such things as a bike helmet, lock, lights or other safety gear and for expenses like bike storage and parking. Employers need to establish their own system of how the program will work.

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Posted in Advocacy, News | 2 Comments »

Applying reflective microspheres for hi-vis night biking

Posted by Jeff Nixa on December 6, 2008


An interesting read on the “topical application of retro reflective microspheres (glass beads).  The concept is that you are essentially making your chosen item reflective via the same manner that your local Transportation Department makes painted stripes on the roadway reflective.”   Photos and instructions and links to other high-visibility reflective materials/tips included.

Posted in Gear, Maintenance, Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »