Ten clues that Lindsay is a car-first town

Spinning your wheels with a bike share in Fenelon Falls

in Around Town/Community/Health/Opinion by

A bike share in Fenelon Falls? Why would anyone need to rent a bicycle in small Fenelon Falls? Can’t we just walk everywhere? Not quite. There are a number of good reasons why bikes have been eagerly welcomed here.

For many people, Fenelon is larger than the downtown. The rail trail that runs north out of the city is breathtaking, especially at this time of year, and renting a bicycle makes it possible to enjoy the scenery even if you don’t have a bicycle of your own or need an extra bicycle or two for visitors.

Moreover, for some people with mobility issues, cycling is actually easier than walking. Accessible bicycles make outdoor exercise possible for a wider variety of people.

Taking one of the bicycles for a spin is a heady experience—with easily adjustable seats, the bikes provide for a smooth comfortable ride for everyone. Baskets on the back and a lock ensures that you can safely stop and run an errand or two. The design makes for easy mounting and dismounting. Although the Fenelon Falls Bikeshare launched only one month ago, it has already seen wide use both by locals and tourists, according to Jim Armstrong, chair of the Kawartha Works Community Co-Operative, which organized the project.

There are 10 bicycles available as part of the bike share that rent at $5 per hour, using an app on a smartphone. Armstrong is hoping to arrange options for renting without the app for next year. The bicycles will remain available in their current docking location by the locks until the snow flies. They will return when weather permits in the spring.

This project was made possible with funding from Ontario Regional Tourism and Enbridge Gas. Thanks are also due to Spokes for Folks for servicing the bikes, the City of Kawartha Lakes for planning assistance and the Trent-Severn Waterway for providing the rental site.

Next time you are by the locks in Fenelon, take one of the bikes for a spin — you won’t regret it.

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Sylvia Keesmaat, who lives on an off-grid solar-powered farm in Cameron, has a diploma in Permaculture Design and a doctorate in Biblical Studies. Every summer she and her husband welcome interns to their farm to learn about resilient gardening and farming, and sustainable living. Sylvia is also an Adjunct Professor of Biblical Studies at the Toronto School of Theology, with a focus on agrarian and anti-imperial readings of the biblical text.

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