1 of 3
Lawson Family Bike Train StretchesLawson Family Bike Train Stretches
2 of 3
Lawson Family Bike Train Resting En RoutePark break en route to Kemptville
3 of 3
And they've arrived!Treats for all after a great ride.
I met Bonnie through a mutual friend we both love to run with. On a slushy run down by the River this winter, Bonnie and I pushed our jogging strollers side by side and got to know each other. Bonnie is a lot of fun and also a huge advocate for active transportation. She helped organize a very successful Winter Walk to School Day this year at her daughters' school. Of course I wanted to hear all about it. Before our run was over, Bonnie had shared all kinds of strategies for encouraging families who have a choice to choose active transportation to school. While we were stretching, she started convincing me to sign our family up for the Rona MS Bike Tour. Here's the rest of her family's story of their favourite August bike tour.
The Lawson Family Bike Train
By Grant Lawson
This August 6 and 7 will mark the 5th time that the "Lawson Train" has participated in the Rona MS Bike Tour from Ottawa to Kemptville. It's a bike tour that raises money for the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada.
Our decision to include our children is how we acquired our nickname.
The first year, Bonnie and I rode our tandem bike with our 2 year-old daughter, Maya, in a child seat over the rear wheel. As you may imagine, we got lots of attention. The next time we participated we now had 3 daughters to take with us! So how do you get 2 adults and 3 children under the age of 5 on a bicycle?
We took the tandem with the child seat over the rear wheel and pulled our double Chariot trailer. Choo choo!
Maya and Natasha have since outgrown the child seat and now ride trail-a-bikes, so we now have two trains. Bonnie and I ride our own bike with a trail-a-bike attached to it and the Chariot for our youngest, Jaida, is attached to one of the trail-a-bikes.
The last couple of years there hasn't been much discussion as to whether or not we'll do the tour as it's usually the first thing to go on our calendar when we're planning our summer. So why do we keep doing it, and why do we bring our kids on a 130km bike ride?
It's a great cause, the tour is incredibly well organized and family friendly, and our kids have a blast. The overnight stay in Kemptville is lots of fun with games and treats for everyone. The girls particularly enjoy the corn boil and the ice-cream stand, I appreciate the beer tent.
The distance, 65 km each day, isn't a problem as we've been biking as a family for as long as we've been a family, so the girls are used to it, and the tour has really, really well-stocked rest stops every 10-15 km.
The key to distance cycling with children is the snacks!
If you're doing the tour this August, come say "hi" - we'll be hard to miss!
Grant, on behalf of the "Lawson Train"