Cascade's response to COVID-19
club news

(updated 3/26/20)
 
Dear Cascade Bicycle Club Community,

Cascade Bicycle Club entered our 50th year with optimism and energy. We had fully staffed our education, advocacy, and rides teams and were prepared for our best programming yet. We were re-imagining our Vision, Mission, and Values, including our racial equity plan. But COVID-19 is impacting Cascade’s ability to gather people together, and like many organizations and businesses, we have quickly realized that many, if not all, of our programs are grinding to a halt.

We exist to serve our community at schools, clubs, advocacy meetings, free group rides, fundraisers, and of course the kind of large-scale ride events that we do so well. Over 60% of our income is directly related to our beloved ride events from Emerald City to STP, from Bikes and Brews to RSVP. With schools closed for the foreseeable future and uncertainty about the viability of the ride event season, the board has taken drastic action to make sure the organization can continue in 2021.

It is with a heavy heart that the board decided to furlough over half of our staff and suspend all of our direct educational programs, including the Major Taylor Project.  Our affiliate, Washington Bikes, after just passing the landmark Safety Stop bill in Olympia, will have to severely reduce operations. 

Gov. Jay Inslee said bicycling is still good for our physical and mental health if it is done safely and according to guidelines, so there is a role for Cascade Bicycle Club to play in this current environment. In that light, the remaining staff will be focused on a number of activities: supporting our communities through reimagined online programming, advocating for safer streets, planning for our events while evaluating the likelihood of our ability to safely organize them and thinking outside the box on what that looks like, working with our granters and partners on our contractual obligations, as well as fundraising and finance operations. We will review our situation on a month-by-month basis. This includes STP, which is currently planned for mid-July, though the board has asked staff to plan for a world in which it is canceled. If we receive positive clarity on what we can do in the summer, we will bring our staff back on, and together, we will move forward to improve lives through bicycling. 

Cascade Bicycle Club has been here to serve the community for the past 50 years. We are fortunate and grateful for the very generous support of our community, ranging from volunteers who have asked how they can help to corporate sponsors who are revisioning how we can work together now and in the future. We acknowledge that our community is looking to us to be a leader at this time, and we are working to be there for them. This is an unpredictable time and we are adjusting as rapidly as we can while doing our best to bring everyone along. While we have been prepared for the loss of some events in the near-term, the possibility of losing everything for a year has not ever been a contingency.   

While our office is closed to the public for the foreseeable future, our remaining staff will be working hard (from their homes) to build a better world through bicycling. We will be reaching out to you regularly to keep you connected to our mission, and appreciate your support, feedback, and encouragement. Remember to support each other, to stay six feet apart, and to be kind and compassionate. We will get through this together.

Tamara Kim Schmautz

President, Board of Directors

Cascade Bicycle Club

 

  • All Community Meetings:  Currently, we have canceled the our Presentation Series, and are rescheduling it for later in the year. We are also moving to hold our Advocacy Leadership Institute trainings online, and are moving our board meetings online. 
  • Schools and Education Classes:  
    • Major Taylor Project: 
      • Canceled for 2020
    • Adult Education Classes and Learn2Ride:
      • Suspended for 2020
    • Summer camps
      • Suspended for 2020
  • Ride and Events:  We are reviewing each event to assess its feasibility and will notify registrants and the public of any changes on our website and social media.  We are also reviewing our terms for cancellations and refunds to ensure riders can make the best decision for themselves and their family. Our goal is to reschedule rather than cancel rides if they fall during a time of greater risk to the community. Please see the specific event page for details.
    • At this time, only Arizona Tour is canceled.
    • We are closing registration for the Ride for Major Taylor, Emerald City Ride, and Seattle Bike 'n Brews and postponing the events to a new date. We will let you know when those dates have been scheduled. 
    • The Kaiser Permanente Bike Everywhere Breakfast has been postponed to June 3 at the Bell Harbor International Conference Center.
    • STP and RSVP are still on at this time along with most other rides, though we are closely monitoring the impacts of the coronavirus.
    • The Washington Bike, Walk, Roll Summit has been postponed to September 20 and 21 in Spokane. Please see cascade.org/summit for details.
  • Free Group Rides: As of March 16, Cascade Bicycle Club and the Rides Committee have decided to suspend Free Group Rides through the end of March and reevaluate the situation surrounding the coronavirus at that time.
  • Staff:  We are recommending that staff work from home at this time if possible.

Please keep in mind that viruses don't discriminate and neither should we. Race, nationality, and ethnicity do not make any person more vulnerable to this illness than others. For more on how we can end stigma surrounding COVID-19, please see the King County Public Health guide:

PDF iconCoronavirus and Stigma.pdf

For updates, please see King County's guidance, which we are monitoring closely here:

https://www.kingcounty.gov/depts/health/communicable-diseases/disease-control/novel-coronavirus.aspx

And event guidance from the CDC:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/mass-gatherings-ready-for-covid-19.html

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