Janet Besler and Ruth McAllister set up the Oak Bay celebration station at municipal hall for Greater Victoria Bike to Work Week in 2018. This year the event is being renamed to Go By Bike Week. (Black Press Media File Photo)

Janet Besler and Ruth McAllister set up the Oak Bay celebration station at municipal hall for Greater Victoria Bike to Work Week in 2018. This year the event is being renamed to Go By Bike Week. (Black Press Media File Photo)

Bike to Work Week returning to Victoria with new name

Go By Bike Week scheduled for Sept. 28 to Oct. 4

It was cancelled in June but the annual Bike to Work Week will return to Greater Victoria this fall.

And it will have a slightly different name, as it’s now called Go By Bike Week.

That’s because of two things. For one, far less people are commuting to work right now, not just by bike, but by any means. The Go By Bike society is also a partner.

Executive director Sara Lax of the Bike to Work Week Victoria society and Greater Victoria Cycling Coalition (a merger is underway of the two) is in the process of finalizing exactly how the Go By Bike Week will look.

It’s scheduled for Sept. 28 to Oct. 4, and there will be prizes.

“Because of COVID-19 we want to be more inclusive and engage a larger audience,” Lax said. “It will be a bit different with COVID-19 safety protocols in place.”

There will be celebration stations around town, just as there usually is, but instead of two a day there will be one a day. There will also be chances to collect “sticker trophies” at Go By Bike Week sponsors around town.

There is actually one celebration station at a time that travels. Each station usually has a different food vendor. These have included Saanich municipal hall, Oak Bay municipal hall, and the Galloping Goose. Some of the stations will be the same but there will be far fewer.

READ ALSO: Scavenger hunts, discovery rides take place of Bike to Work Week

A challenge this year is that even though cycling is up (bikes flew off the shelves once the COVID-19 shutdown happened), a lot of would-be commuters are working from home. That includes government employees and university students and staff.

“We are trying to reach people who aren’t employed – seniors, students, people who aren’t going to their office or are on leave – and also inviting people who are working from home to visit a station, or a sponsor business,” Lax said. “The fun online challenges and sticker trophies are for accomplishing a new ride, like if you biked to the grocery store for the first time, for example.”

READ ALSO: Wheels in motion for Victoria bike network extension

The sponsors will have stickers (and hand sanitizer) where you can enter your name for a daily prize draw.

Prizes include gift cards to local restaurants and bike stores.

If you like prizes, GVCC is also continuing its Neighbourhood Rides program of 16 Scavenger Hunts and Distance Rides that started in May and continues to Aug. 31. Currently open for prizes are the Gordon Head/UVic Scavenger Hunt, Saanich Peninsula Scavenger Hunt, downtown Victoria Discovery Ride, Royal Oak/Cordova Bay Discovery Ride and the Point to Point to Point Distance Ride.

Register at gvcc.bc.ca/theme-rides once you’ve done one of the current rides and you can win a prize (be sure to check the schedule on gvcc.bc.ca).

reporter@oakbaynews.com