Mayo Clinic Health System‘s sponsorship of the 2014 Wisconsin Bike Challenge is the latest step the organization has taken to invest in the health of our community. The Wisconsin Bike Challenge sponsorship says that Mayo Clinic Health System is interested in supporting the health of residents, improving congestion by eliminating car trips, encouraging bicyclists to ride their bikes, and supporting the work we do at the Wisconsin Bike Fed to make Wisconsin a better place to ride a bike. Mayo Clinic Health System has earned a Bronze Bicycle Friendly Business status as determined by the League of American Bicyclists. It is obvious that the organization is committed to making it possible for patients and employees to ride their bikes to their campus when you notice the number of bicycle racks and bike lockers placed around the campus. There is an additional bike storage locker that holds up to twenty-eight bikes. The parking makes it convenient for bicyclists to ride all year long.
In addition, Mayo Clinic Health Systems maintain an active commuting toolkit on its intranet site. The Health Promotions Department has engaged 200 participants in the La Crosse Fitness Festival corporate challenge each year, and members of the organization work closely with a variety of community groups dedicated to improving lifestyles, including work with groups to advocate for better infrastructure and reduce traffic volume.
Over the last three years, Mayo Clinic has sponsored the Labor Day Bicycle Festival in La Crosse. The free bicycle festival includes urban bike rides led by local volunteers and and self-supported bicycle tours with a variety of lengths that attract bicyclists from all over the state. This is an opportunity for bicyclists to travel to the driftless region and ride on some of the most beautiful roads in the state. Local cyclists become involved as ride ambassadors and urban ride leaders. Some are even lucky enough to enjoy the rides. Last year Mayo Clinic added a Bicycle Safety Course to the weekend. This provided families with a structured environment to practice their bicycling skills before kids headed back to school. Plenty of bicycle enthusiasts and local volunteers showed up to help kids practice their safe riding skills.
This year a family scavenger hunt by bicycle, fix a flat tire race, and exhibition by the La Crosse Freeride MTB group will add to the excitement. We are happy to have the support of the Mayo Clinic Health Systems.