As a member of Jersey Shore Touring Society, you have taken the first step toward bicycle advocacy. Our mission is to promote recreational cycling. One effective way to do this is to ride in a courteous and responsible manner. On the road, bikeways or multi-use trails we can be a visible, positive presence as we join motorists and other trail users. We can demonstrate that “share the road” and multi-use trails are indeed workable concepts.
JSTS also has taken an active role in bicycle advocacy by joining several organizations that work at the national through local level to promote the interest of all cyclists. Many of our members have realized the important role that these groups can play in the future of cycling and have also joined them as individuals. One national leader that is truly the voice of cyclists is the League of American Bicyclists (LAB). Among other things, LAB works with legislators in Washington, DC to protect the rights of bicyclists and include safe routes to schools and bikeways in highway funding. Another national organization is the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA). Throughout the country, trails are being threatened or closed. IMBA works at all levels to build trails and to educate officials and the public on workable multi-use trails. On the east coast, the East Coast Greenway is in the final stages of development to have a bikeway from Maine to Florida.
In Monmouth County, JSTS was active in helping the Monmouth County Planning Board develop the 2003 Bicycling Map. This map shows bike routes throughout the County and rates them for safe bicycle riding. It also includes bicycle laws, safety tips and information about bicycles on public transportation. We also have several volunteers helping the County with trail maintenance throughout the Monmouth County Park System.
As the JSTS Bicycle Advocate, I urge you to ride safely and work with your local recreation department, school or planning board as an ambassador for “share the road”. Bicycles are an efficient mode of transportation that promotes a healthy lifestyle. Take a positive approach to show motorists and trail users that we can all “enjoy the ride”. Below is a listing of contacts that have an interest in bicycle advocacy. Please support them with your membership and contact them with your questions or concerns.
League of American Bicyclists: www.bikeleague.org
International Mountain Bicycling Association: www.imba.com
East Coast Greenway Alliance: www.greenway.org
NJDOT-Bicycle Advocate: firstname.lastname@example.org
Monmouth County Planning Board: www.co.monmouth.nj.us
Monmouth County Park System: email@example.com
To find your legislator: www.njleg.state.nj.us