We’re Number 1 – Again!

Our Commuter Challenge award held up in front of the RRC bus stop at NDC

We won GOLD in our workplace category – again!

It is official – Red River College won GOLD in our workplace category in the 2017 Commuter Challenge – for the 3rd year in a row!

Not only that, we had a record year! We had our highest number of participants ever (191) and our highest participation rate ever (30.3%)! The number of people who registered and logged at least one trip increased 63% from last year!

This is a true testament to the commitment of the people of Red River College to sustainable commuting options, and to sustainability in general. Thank you to everyone who participated whether you did what you always do, or you tried something new just for the Challenge, we could not have done it without you!

Some highlights from the 2017 Commuter Challenge:

RRC Instructor Daniel Enns with a bike on a stand hosting the NDC bike repair workshop

NDC Bike Repair Workshop hosted by RRC Instructor Daniel Enns.

Bike Repair Workshops
Leading up to the Challenge, we organized two bike repair workshops for cyclists of all levels to increase their confidence in performing routine maintenance and simple repairs on the go. 27 people attended with many more interested, prompting a brainstorming session in our office about how to support more people to cycle to and from campus – stay tuned! A big shout out to Daniel Enns, an RRC Instructor who hosted the NDC workshop AND was the catalyst (and volunteer mechanic) for us to host our first-ever Bike to Work Day Pit Stop (see below).

Early Bird Prize
To help encourage registration, we held a prize draw from everyone who registered before May 31st for the Challenge (which was June 5-9). 123 people registered before this date, which represented 60% of total registrations. Congratulations to our winner Michelle Lodewyks who won a bike lock, an “I “heart” Sustainability” reusable water bottle, and a universal cup holster.

Transportation Plan boards on display at the Commuter Challenge Launch

Display on our Transportation Plan at the 2017 Commuter Challenge launch.

Launch Event
We were thrilled to host Green Action Centre for the official launch for the 2017 Commuter Challenge in Bijou Park beside the Paterson GlobalFoods Institute on June 1. The event was emceed by CBC’s Trevor Dineen and guests included The Honourable Cathy Cox, Minister of Sustainable Development; Councillor Brian Mayes, City of Winnipeg; and Paul Vogt, President of Red River College. This event also coincided with the launch of our Transportation Plan which we were able to showcase at the event.

Whitney and a cyclist sharing a funny moment at the commuter welcome station at NDC

Having fun at one of our Commuter Welcome Stations.

Inspiring Colleagues
Speaking with many of our commuters that week, whether at one of our commuter welcome stations or over email was a major highlight of this event. We heard many stories that inspired us and great ideas and questions that intrigued us. Some of you gave a new commute mode a try for the first time that week, and some just kept doing what you always do, and all of you inspired us. A few big shout outs:

  • To the people who shared their sustainable commuting stories (part 1 and part 2) to help motivate and inspire others (we would like to make this an ongoing feature, so if you would like to share your own commuting story, contact us): Patrick Griffith, Matthew Ferber, Lisa Case, Cassidy Dzama, Matthew Brett, Chris Harrington, and Debbie Donato
  • To the top commuters for the week in each of the categories below:
    • Bike: Greg Krenz (300KM); Mike Poitras (297KM); Daniel Enns (230KM)
    • Carpool: Danny Hutchinson (733KM); Sherrie Cooke (699KM); Heather Mauthe (500KM)
    • Transit: Joseph Noval (264KM); Tara Luchuck (240KM); Mariam Merasty (200km)

Bike to Work Day – The Commuter Challenge Epilogue

A couple of weeks after the Commuter Challenge was Bike Week – a week-long celebration of cycling in all forms for all reasons. The last day of this week (Friday, June 23) was Bike to Work Day where pit stops were set up all across the City with bike repair, treats, and prizes for commuters cycling to work. Thanks to the initiative of Daniel Enns, RRC hosted it’s first-ever pit stop for Bike to Work Day. With the help of many volunteers (listed below), we welcomed about 115 cyclists to our stop located at the north side of the Omand’s Creek footbridge with fresh cinnamon buns and other treats, coffee, water, music, repairs and maintenance and a prize draw courtesy of the Campus Store.

Thank you to the following volunteers for making the Pit Stop a great success: Daniel Enns, Todd Buchanan, Jody Gillis, Jim Voth, Tyler Steiner, Patrick Griffith, Leslie Ternowetsky (bike valet to the stars).

Check out the gallery below for photos from our Bike to Work Day Pit Stop: