Help A Mama Out!
Regular readers have probably read Morgan's name a few times here, I mention her a lot. That's because Morgan is my coworker, friend and role-model in car-free parenting and grass roots bike advocacy. Her example and her knowledge inform my own work and my own thoughts on bikes and on Pedal Parenting tremendously.
Kids Hauling Kids On Kid-Haulers
For the last several years Morgan has basically single-handedly, (and many-wheelingly) been responsible for bringing the inspiring and educational Family Bike Expos, where curious riders are invited to sample many varieties of cargo and kid-hauling rigs, to events throughout the city. Opportunities to actually test ride a longtail, or a Madsen, or an e-assist tandem are basically not available to Seattleites who are not already plugged into the Cargo Bike Revolution. The consequent need to purchase (expensive and unusual) cargo bikes sight-unseen off the internet is a huge barrier to getting started for a lot of potential Pedal Parents. Morgan's work is an effective solution to that problem.
Morgan, Mrs Morgan and a Stoke-Monkeyed Madsen
It is also a bit of a barn-raising. I wrote above that Morgan brings the Family Bike Expos to public events single-handedly. This is only partially true. One of the inspiring aspects to the Expos is how many bikes are brought by families themselves, eager to share and show off their rides. Folks will ride their cargo bike to the event, park it with the others, fill out an info card about the pluses and minuses of their set-up and often stick around to answer questions. All participating Pedal Parents become promoters. It is lovely.
Morgan has another very important collaborator in her good work. I am not referring to her awesome wife or her fabulous kids here. I'm talking about her sturdy, strong and steady steed, Bernice. I wrote about Bernice, the recumbent, e-assist cargo-monster pedicab after I borrowed her for a few days this Summer. She is an amazing cycle.
Bernice is customized with special front fork mounts which enable Morgan to not only haul bikes in the passenger area, but also tow them behind her like a pedal powered train engine.
Look again at the picture above. That's five bikes Bernice is carrying. I've seen her haul significantly more than that on a number of occasions.
These days, as the Family Biking Specialist at Bike Works, (a community bike project where I also work) Morgan offers the Family Bike Expos as a part of our Family Biking Initiative. Bernice is invaluable in helping those events and many other bike classes and bike redistribution programs work and work on people-power!
The Wedding Crashers
Last month I had the honor of participating in Morgan's wedding. I'd been asked to serve as chauffeur. I was to pilot Bernice on the blessed day, bringing the wedding party from a home in Mt Baker to a park on Lake Washington about a mile away for their ceremony.
On the way to the wedding an unforeseeable mechanical failure caused us to crash, spilling and scraping-up all six riders and adding a dramatic wrinkle to the story of the day. No one was seriously hurt, and we were beautifully supported by a bunch of guests from another queer wedding that just happened to be gathering very near the site of our crash. Everyone, brides, kids and bridesmaids all kept their cool beautifully and eventually we made it to the ceremony, which was all the more meaningful for the bumps on the way.
Thing is, one family member didn't make it to the ceremony! Bernice was knocked out of commission by the crash. Most of the trike survived beautifully but one of her wheels, the one built around the fancy hub motor that gives Bernice her super-strength, was destroyed. The flange, where the spokes hook into the hub was sheared off, basically destroying the hub.
The Bring Back Bernice Fund!
I want to help my friend and I think you should, too. Here are some bullets:
- Morgan has given so much to spread the cargo bike love in Seattle. She is a part of our community, she is hurting. Every cycling parent knows how difficult it is when your kid-hauler is out of commission. Let's have a rent-party and help out this Pedal Parent when she needs it!
- Bernice is a necessary part of Morgan's advocacy. Let's raise some funds to get her back on the road and make sure that great events like the Family Bike Expos can continue!
- Let's Donate to the Bring Back Bernice Fund!
Haulin' Colin is already at work repairing Bernice's motor. This work and the other repairs needed to heal Bernice will cost Morgan's family money that they cannot afford on their own.
Can you help a Mama out?