Thursday, March 5, 2015

Flume Line Trail Ride

Kidical Mass is a monthly bike ride for kids, families, and kids at heart. This month we're taking the Flume Line Trail (formerly known as the Water Ditch Trail) south towards Arlington Elementary to check out some improvements and additions to this multi-use path. We've done this route twice before and it's great to see our city's bicycle infrastructure improve and expand.

If the group is ambitious, we may venture over to the STAR Center on South 66th Street. Either way, we will return to South Park via Puget Sound Avenue (riding in the street!) for snacks and more play time. Helmets are required and young riders should bring a grown-up.

Date: Sunday, March 22, 2015
Start Location: South Park/Asia Pacific Cultural Center, 4851 South Tacoma Way, Tacoma 98409
Time: Meet-up at 10:30am. Ride starts at 11am
Distance: About 4 miles roundtrip

Contact the ride leader (Matt) for more info: kidicalmasstacoma <at> gmail <dot> com or 25three-2zero9-403two.

Sponsored by the Tacoma Wheelmen's Bicycle Club.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Not-a-Leap-Year Ride

We heard that the Mayor has proclaimed that 2015 is the Year of the Bike in Tacoma! Unfortunately this year is one day shorter than others, so we're celebrating this misfortune with donuts a bike ride. ;) 

Meet up at Legendary Donuts (2602 6th Ave) on Saturday, Feb. 28 around 9 or 930. We'll provide some special donuts for the young riders then roll out to Wright Park and burn off some sugar. If the weather is good, we'll take a 2 mile route to the park; if the weather is crummy, the direct route is just over 1 mile. There are public restrooms and water fountains at the playground. Young riders should dress for the weather and bring a grown up to ride with them. Contact us if you have questions.

This is a friendly ride with kids and families, teaching everyone how to ride in the street safely with confidence and respect for others. Expect a super slow pace. 

Please note that training wheels and push bikes may not be the best for this ride, but you are welcome to walk on the sidewalk to Wright Park with those youngest riders or even just meet us there and ride on the trails.

Also, many thanks to the Tacoma Wheelmen's Bicycle Club for sponsoring our 2015 season. Family memberships are just $20/year and dues help support rides, advocacy, trails, and events throughout Tacoma and Pierce County.

If you ride with us often, please show them your support.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Coming Up: Downtown Winter Solstice Ride

Kidical Mass Tacoma is heading downtown on Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014, for a short ride on the shortest day of the year. The full route is just 2.9 miles!

Meet at the corner of S 19th and Jefferson (across from The Swiss) around 10:30 a.m. Dress for the weather! Email Matt if you need routing advice on the best way to ride to the start location, otherwise street parking is free on Sundays downtown.

We'll roll-out at 11 a.m., taking the lane past the Tacoma Art Museum and down to Dock Street. Thea's Park is our turn-around point.

On the way back we'll see a few murals, pay tribute at the Sun King sculpture, and cross the Bridge of Glass. There's public art everywhere on this ride. We'll finish up on Pacific Ave with free hot chocolate and cookies with the SOTA Bike Club at the School of the Arts. 

Parents and kids are welcome to join us for lunch afterwards at the Harmon Brewing restaurant for some 2015 ride brainstorming. (Kids eat free on Sundays at the Harmon!) Bring a bike lock if you're staying for lunch. 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

For November: 2nd Cycle Shop Ride through Hilltop

Mock up of the new shop at 1205 MLK Jr Way in Tacoma

Join us at the brand new 2nd Cycle shop on Sunday November 2nd to celebrate DIY bikes. Meetup at 10:30 to get ready, roll-out at 11am for a loop ride around the Hilltop neighborhood. We'll return to the shop for snacks and a hands-on tutorial for kids on how to change a flat tire. Let 'em get their hands dirty - that's how they learn!
So long old shop...

2nd Cycle is a community cycle center where you can buy new/used parts and shop time. They help teach you how to use the tools to repair and maintain your bicycle. It's an empowering concept that your kids will love.

Their old shop down the street has been an amazing resource for both the Hilltop community and Tacoma at-large. They are making the transition to this new, permanent space at 1205 MLK Way throughout the month of October.
This is a free event sponsored by the Tacoma Wheelmen's Bicycle Club, but donations to 2nd Cycle are appreciated and encouraged. You can support them in-person at the shop or through their IndieGoGo site.

This is our first winter ride, and we're expecting it to be a little chilly and wet. Dress for the weather, or just join us at the shop. The route will be almost entirely flat, 2-3 miles, and rideable for riders of nearly all ages and abilities. Email Matt the ride leader if you have specific questions. 

We love riding in Hilltop!

Monday, August 11, 2014

For September: South Tacoma School Ride

September is Back to School month so we're heading to South Tacoma on September 14 to ride the historic Water Ditch Trail from South Park to Arlington Elementary to get kids motivated about biking to school. And, at the request of several families, this is our first ride on a Sunday! As usual, meetup at 10:30am to get everyone ready then we'll rollout at 11am. 

Some improvements have been made to the trail since we first rode it together last summer. Most importantly, the two No Crossing signs at South 56th Street have been replaced with a new pedestrian crossing signal.

Before, looking south at 56th

Now, looking north at 56th

This is a huge improvement. Our 3.8 mile round-trip ride will start and end at South Park, which has bathrooms, a sprayground, a playground and lots of afternoon shade. 

We'll cross 56th and head south past Edison Elementary and on to Arlington Elementary. We'll stop and play on the playground for a bit, then return to South Park for a snack. 

The Water Ditch Trail is quite flat with a few short hills. Most of the route is paved trail, but we will also be riding in the street. (That's the whole idea - kids are traffic, too!) Kids on training wheels and push bikes are welcome, but be aware there are a few short hills to navigate. 

If you're new to Kidical Mass, you can find out more about our free family bike rides here. Feel free to leave questions in the comments section below or email Matt at kidicalmasstacoma<at>

Sunday, July 6, 2014

August Ride: Waterfront to Ruston Family Fair

On August 9 our monthly ride will head to the waterfront for a 1.7 mile route to the Ruston Family Fair in the heart of the historic Ruston Business District. There will be many free activities for kids at the Fair including old fashioned games and wagon rides, a classic car show, and outdoor music. Something for everyone to see and do!

Let's meet-up at 10:30am near the Copperline Apartments (4760 Ruston Way), where the new Point Ruston trail starts with this Giant Octopus on the sidewalk. If you're driving to the start, there's a big gravel lot across the street (on the south side of Ruston Way) where you can park for the afternoon.

The ride will follow the waterfront trail north around Point Ruston towards the marina, then up the hillside towards the main entrance to Point Defiance Park. The hill section is a rather steep grade, but the paved trail is accessible to riders on nearly any size and type of bicycle, even training wheels and push bikes. We'll regroup at the top of the hill and ride together through the Ruston neighborhood to the Fair. 

We'll plan to hang-out at the Fair for an hour before regrouping again for a ride back down the hill. You are welcome to ride back with the group, stay longer at the fair, or head back early. (If you are staying at the fair, please bring a lock to secure your bikes!) 

As usual, our pal Jeff's Ice Cream will be along for the ride to hand out a free ice cream treat to all of our riders, courtesy of the Tacoma Wheelmen's Bicycle Club.

If you're new to Kidical Mass, you can find out more about our free family bike rides here. Feel free to leave your questions in the comments below or email Matt at kidicalmasstacoma<at>

P.S. The Underwater Music Festival is also happening on August 9, so don't be surprised if you see a ton of boats moored off-shore near Point Ruston. 

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

July East Side Ride: Stewart Heights to Charlotte's Blueberry Park

Let's go berry picking!

On Saturday July 26, we'll meetup at 10:30am at Stewart Heights Park near the playground. At 11am we'll roll-out for a flat ride to Charlotte's Blueberry Park. We'll pick blueberries for a little while (bring a container!) then head back to Stewart Heights.

We'll provide a free ice cream to all riders at the finish, but you may want to pack a picnic or bring your swimsuit to take full advantage of both the Stewart Heights park and pool.

The route is quite flat and there's only one arterial to cross. The road surface through the neighborhood is a little rough, but this should be manageable for riders on smaller push-bikes or even training wheels. Roundtrip is 3.5 miles, but tired riders can make the ride a little shorter by not looping around the southern end of Blueberry Park.

Charlotte's Blueberry Park is a gem. There are TONS of huge blueberry bushes, picnic tables, a short trail, a port-a-potty and plenty of space to run around. The bushes are loaded with berries and should be ripening up just in time for our ride. The picking season continues through August.

Questions? Suggestions on how we can make this more fun and awesome for kids?  Leave us a comment below or email us kidicalmasstacoma (at) gmail (dot) com.