Share The Road

2009 Bike Summit Success

Well, we did it. The Ontario Bike Summit was, by all accounts, a great success and now it is our pleasure to thank those who made it possible.

A huge thank you to all who attended, to our sponsors, our volunteers, the City of Waterloo and the Region of Waterloo , our volunteers and our host hotel, the Waterloo Inn.

We are now beginning the process of looking through the evaluation forms and the response is that those who attended found our sessions useful and informative. And we have great feedback already on what worked and didn’t and what we should be looking at for next year – thank you for your input!

Here are some of the highlights:

Finally, we had presenters who spoke with heart, humor, passion and clarity about what we need to do to advance the cause of cycling in Ontario. There were moments of celebration as we applauded the work of bicycling retailer Dennis Mizerski, owner of Racer Sportif, philanthropist and community builder. We look forward to your nominations next year, and to hearing from you about who you think should receive next year’s “Bicycling with Heart” award. In the meantime, our sincere congratulations to Dennis and his family.

And who will forget the moving presentation from Anne Paliwal, and her powerful message of hope from the “Kanata Five” – all on the road to recovery. Anne’s message was an important reminder that while our work must be rooted in facts and data, we need to remember that there is human face to cycling which reinforces the importance of sharing the road.

Many of you have asked whether or not we will be posting Summit information, including presentations, on our website. Good news – yes we will. Please bear with us as we seek to do so over the next week. I should caution that we will do what we can – not all presenters used presentations but we will do what we can to get this information to you -- as soon as we can.

In our closing remarks, we wanted to share with you our vision for moving the cycling agenda forward in Ontario and how we will be continuing to work very hard to put in place an organization that is rooted in the values of partnership, is inclusive and grassroots in nature. The Summit was our opportunity to demonstrate to you our desire to bring together best practices we can all learn from, seek input on building a public policy framework for cycling in Ontario and invite provincial politicians to share their ideas and listen to ours.

Working with you we know that we will be successful. Working together, we can create a Bicycle Friendly Ontario. We look forward to your continued support and input.

Here’s to the next Ontario Bike Summit!

Yours in safe cycling, Eleanor McMahon.

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