Let’s start with a little bit about me. I’m a 60+ year old white male. With a degree in accounting, I work as a consultant for Microsoft Dynamics SL. I’m happily married, four sons, two daughters, nine grandkids, three dogs, a cat and eight chickens. I paddle kayaks and (most relevant to this blog) I ride bikes.
I moved to Omaha in late 2012 to be with my wife-to-be. Before transplanting myself, I spent some time online researching this jewel of the Heartland and liked what I saw: a growing trail system, a progressive mayor who seemed open to continuing multimodal transportation improvement, a bike/ped coordinator, and organizations that advocated for that continued progress.
When I got here, things were a bit different. Yes, the trails are here, but they pretty much only go North/South. The mayor who was pushing the multimodal agenda was voted out in 2013 and replaced by a red pen wielding budget cutter. Part of that cutting: the BP coordinator position is no more. The advocacy groups I was impressed with had dwindled down to one: ModeShiftOmaha, whose focus was on all alternative transportation options.
We joined a bike club thinking that surely they did advocacy. Unfortunately, with the exception of one or two other members, there didn’t seem to be a lot of interest in going down that road.
In late 2014, LiveWellOmaha hosted a “congress” of individuals interested in advocating for bicycles in Omaha. With assistance from Advocacy Advance, this meeting led to the re-formation of Omaha Bikes (which is one of the groups that had fallen by the wayside.) Starting with 12 – 14 folks, the number distilled down to a core of seven. So far, we’ve incorporated, gotten insurance, elected a starting board of directors, and are moving forward.
So why this blog? Well, in a nutshell, it will allow me to express opinions that may differ from those of Omaha Bikes. I’m hoping that it will provide information on what’s going on in Omaha’s bicycle community and groups. Furthermore, I’m hoping to collect ideas from those of you who choose to read and collaborate with me in this journey as we bring two-wheeled, human-powered transportation to where it should be in the Heartland.
So let’s get started. If you see something that provokes, moves or entices, you please let me know. Otherwise, I’m just talking to myself.