We ride the last Friday of every month all year round. Meet at confederation park (elgin and laurier) at 5:30, ride leaves at 6pm!

This is a team blog. To join the team (and get access to post and/or administer the site), email criticalmassottawa@gmail.com

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Critical mass goes to parliament

Ottawa critical mass riders outside the Canadian parliament buildings

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Citizens for Safe Cycling seeks input

Hi, massers!

My name is Charles Akben-Marchand, and I am President of Citizens for Safe Cycling (CfSC). Many of you know me from parties on fifth street.

CfSC has been around since 1984, and we work to encourage and improve cycling as a mode of transportation.

Anyhoo, I would like it if someone (or if the group collectively) could write a review of the Critical Mass rides in Ottawa for our member newsletter, as we would like to solicit our members' opinions to create a position towards the rides. The deadline for the newsletter is February 1st, so if you want to get a review after this month's ride, you'd better do it quickly!

For your collective convenience, I have created a page on my friend Vic's Wiki ("Viki"), that you guys can use to discuss Critical Mass things or potentially write an article in a way that is more convenient than through Blogger.

There is plenty more informaiton on CfSC on Viki and on CfSC's website, and if you have any other questions or want to get involved with CfSC, you can e-mail me at president -at- cfsc.ottawa.on.ca.

Happy riding,

Charles Akben-Marchand
Citizens for Safe Cycling.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

The Peoples Mass

just some thoughts

The november mass was awsome, it was soo good to have so many people out there. I was just reflecting on it recently and thought maybe i would share. firstly every demo or event always has kinks to iron out and lessons to learn from, to me thats half the draw or participating. we may not see a dramatic rise in the amounts of bikes on the streets immedialtely but we can certainly see the change in and learn how to be sustainable in how we organize, and live together right away.

Some ideas might me, developing a regular format for the start of the each mass where a person (it could rotate) volunteered or is elected to be the facilitator of that fridays mass. They open the event welcome people, explain what it is, tell a joke, a piece of news for the day, share a note about safety, or a question etc. they ask the mass what area of town they want to ride in that night, and there is a show of hands or by volume where people want to go. They ask if we have some people who want to do corking tonight. Then we all head off.

In the streets, when the mass comes to a stop, because we don't know which direction to go, the facilitator holds a really brief street council where essentially you ask the mass to decide left or right, or perhaps if they want to head to another area. The facilitator does not get to vote they just offer up the question, to keep it unbiased. Take comfort in numbers if you have them, the street is yours own it, it happens all the time with accidents etc.

I also really liked the idea about puppets, and about being friendly even when you are blocking a vehicle. Its would be awsome to hand out pamphlets about bikes, or about critical mass.

Another thought was on media attention, once it gets rolling with consistent people we could definetly write press released and send them out to the media outlets, student papers etc. and newspapers. At that point it would be good to think about jail support or what happens if the police come as well.

Anyway these are just thoughts, keep up the good work.