PLEDGE TO DITCH THE FOUR WHEELS FOR TWO DURING THIS MAY’S NATIONAL BIKE MONTH!

(Santa Cruz, Calif., April 11, 2012) — Two Santa Cruz-based non-profits, Project Bike Trip and Ecology Action, have teamed up to launch The Two Wheeled Drive, a new kind of bicycle challenge that is aimed at getting more people commuting by bicycle more often. The challenge is for folks to choose two wheels over four while raising awareness and funds for youth bicycle education! In other words, it’s a campaign to encourage and motivate more people to use bicycles to get to and from work, school, the grocery store, or just for fun. Similar to the better known walk-a-thon, The Two Wheeled Drive is a commute-a-thon where the ultimate goal is to raise money to teach more kids about the benefits of the bicycle. The Two Wheeled Drive lasts the whole month of May in conjunction with the nationally known Bike Month and to support the local Bike to Work Program, which is a program of Ecology Action. “We are very excited about how The Two Wheeled Drive coincides perfectly with the 25th anniversary of Bike to Work Day,” stated Nick Mucha, Ecology Action program specialist. “Since each person creates their own individual challenge, it offers everyone a unique platform to increase their use of sustainable transportation. And their participation will directly benefit local youth bike projects, too!”

Folks can join the challenge by following 5 simple steps. First, create a personal bicycle commute challenge. Second, set a fundraising goal. Third, create a personalized online campaign pledge page. Fourth, tell friends and family about the challenge and this worthwhile effort. And, fifth, start the challenge! As this is the first year launching the drive, Katie DeClercq, Director of Project Bike Trip, is excited about the overall potential of this campaign. “We’ve already received an overwhelming amount of support from our sponsors and people that are ready to sign up,” said DeClercq. “I think it’s something that will catch on quickly, as it offers people healthier habits for themselves and for our youth.” The Two Wheeled Drive is designed to raise awareness and funds to help combat the issues that face today’s youth: rising obesity, polluted communities, huge budget cuts within the school systems, and rising unemployment. As such, one hundred-percent of proceeds from this campaign will help fund three Santa Cruz-based bicycle education programs: BikeSmart! (elementary school), Bike Club (middle school), and Bike Tech (high school). The Two Wheeled Drive is secondarily a campaign to get folks to hop on their bikes more often for their daily commute – something that most people would admit they wish they did more often.

The Two Wheeled Drive’s sponsors are offering premium bike prizes that total more than $12,000 to further incentivize participants to reach their fundraising goals. The Grand Prize is a new Ibis Hakkalugi bicycle, which is provided by Ibis Cycles, Easton Cycling, and WTB. Other prizes include a Giant Bicycles Escape bike, a New Belgium “Fat Tire” cruiser bike, Timbuk2 messenger bags and phone covers, Verve Coffee Roasters coffee and brewer, Light & Motion commuter lights, Giro Reverb helmets and gloves, Freedom/WTB tires and saddles, and Park Tool multi-tools and patch kits. The Two Wheeled Drive starts May 1st and ends May 31st. Folks can sign up and pledge to choose two wheels over four at www.projectbiketrip.org.

About Project Bike Trip: Project Bike Trip (PBT) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in Santa Cruz, Ca that is dedicated to providing comprehensive hands-on and academic bicycle education for youth. PBT programs offer technical training in bicycle mechanics, preparing youth for job opportunities within the bicycle industry. Additionally, youth are introduced to the bicycle as an alternative source of mainstream transportation, the road to healthy living, and as a means for connecting with the outdoors. More info at: www.projectbiketrip.org.

About Ecology Action: Ecology Action, a Santa Cruz-based nonprofit, is a statewide leader in energy efficiency and community program implementation, passionately driven to create a brighter, greener, more economically sustainable future. Ecology Action’s Sustainable Transportation Division assists commuters in finding ways to reduce single occupancy vehicle trips to reduce traffic congestion, improve air quality, enhance bicyclist/pedestrian safety, and promote healthier communities. More info at: www.ecoact.org or www.facebook.com/ecologyaction.

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