Expectations for Community Hosts
Veterans Peace and Sustainable Living Ride
Eugene–Seattle, July 25–August 8, 2006
EXPECTATIONS FOR COMMUNITY HOSTS
PLEASE NOTE: The total number of cyclists will be confirmed in early July. At this date we have approximately a dozen cyclists confirmed for the Eugene to Portland segment, and more joining after that.
Cyclists will need a rendezvous location—a destination where they can gather and get oriented as they arrive in town. Cyclists will be traveling single file, moving at different speeds and all will not arrive at the same time. Please advise whether this gathering place is different than the location of the evening dinner and whatever public event is planned.
BATHROOM & WASHING FACILITIES
Cyclists will need access to a toilet, water for washing and a place to brush teeth, etc. This can be as simple as a basin filled with water. A shower would be wonderful.
Riders will be in need of a lot of carbohydrates and proteins, as well as healthy fats, to sustain their energy. Food need not be complicated. It can be as simple as pasta or sandwiches or a potluck dinner, but cyclists will be hungry and eating a lot more than usual, so please plan to have plenty of food on hand. Please provide water and unsweetened fruit juices to drink. The cyclists will collectively pay for the cost of the food.
FOOD NOTE: Because one of the themes of this ride is "sustainability," we urge you to serve locally grown organic fruits and vegetables as much as possible.
Cyclists will be prepared to provide for their own breakfast. However, if host communities would like to provide breakfast for the cyclists before they depart for their next destination, please let us know. Riders should consume their breakfast and hour and a half before departing, and they will need to depart early to avoid the heat.
COMMUNITY EVENT (OPTIONAL)
One of the point of this Veterans Peace & Sustainability Ride is to promote community education around sustainability and local self-reliance, taking responsibility of our lifestyle choices (see "BACKGROUND" below). We encourage local hosts to organize some kind of community gathering where discussion of these issues can take place. Brian Willson, along with other cyclists, look forward to sharing their ideas and hearing from community members along the route.
Besides cycles, there will be several support vehicles accompanying the vets' ride. We are attempting to limit the number of vehicles. So far, they include:
• Mendocino VFP's biodiesel-powered White Rose bus (school-sized— sleeps 10).
• Westphalia biodiesel-powered VW van driven by Mark Dubrow, associate member of Humboldt Bay VFP Chapter 56, who will be documenting the ride with his video camera
• A second Westphalia biodiesel van (as yet unconfirmed) driven by Don Maddox, photographer from VFP Chapter 56. Don's van is equipped with a computer enabling him to distribute digital photographs and news releases to Indymedia and other media outlets.
• Hybrid Prius, all-around support vehicle driven by Ted Sexauer, disabled Vietnam Veteran, member of Sonoma County VFP Chapter 71.
As noted above, the actual number of cyclists will be confirmed by early July. A few of the cyclists will be carrying sleeping bags and are very self-sufficient. Others will be able to sleep on the White Rose bus. The rest—an unknown number at this time—will need either a home, a motel, a campground, or a safe yard to sleep in. Cyclists need to be kept together in close proximity if at all possible.
Some riders may have special needs. For example, Brian Willson, who cycles with his arms, will need to ice his shoulders each day at the end of the ride. It would be great if Brian could get an occasional shoulder massage at the end of the way (and other cyclists could benefit from massage as well). We will let you know ahead of time of any additional special requests.
PLEASE help the ride organizers by providing the following information:
• Name, phone number and email contact information for main organizer
• Precise rendezvous, dinner and event locations with clear directions for cyclists
• Timing of events
• Locations (addresses and directions) of (natural) food stores and drug stores where cyclists can stock up on supplies for the next day's ride
• Bicycle repair shops with phone numbers
• Local media contacts for public relations
Please send information or direct questions to:
snail mail: P.O. Box 5170, Arcata, CA 95518
cc: Lane Anderson
Members of Veterans For Peace (VFP) and Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW) are planning a human-powered cycle ride in July and August to promote taking responsibility for the consequences of personal and community choices as a response to war. Cyclists will depart from Eugene, Oregon on July 25 and pedal to Seattle, Washington where the national Veterans For Peace convention will be held August 10-13.
The “Veterans Peace and Sustainable Living Ride” seeks to demonstrate taking responsibility for reducing our dependence on oil, an addiction believed to be a major cause of current wars. In the words of veteran Brian Willson, “A revolution of consciousness is needed, enabling us to recognize the sacred interconnectedness of all life. Once that is internalized, we naturally make different choices based on mutual respect.” The cyclists believe that one of the most radical things we can do is stop consuming while recreating local, community-reliant economies.
The ride was initiated by Brian Willson and Lane Anderson, both Vietnam veterans residing in California. Willson, a double-amputee from Arcata, California, will be riding a three-wheeled, arm-powered handcycle. Anderson, one of the main organizers of the Arlington West project in Santa Barbara, has arthritic knees and will ride a bicycle outfitted with an "Exycle" hand-generated power booster. The ride will be accompanied by several alternative-fueled vehicles, including “The White Rose,” a VFP biodiesel bus from Mendocino. Community events will be scheduled at each stop along the ride, details still to be determined. For information stay tuned to <http://www.vfp56.org/seattle.html> or call Becky at 707-826-9197. For information about the VFP convention in Seattle, visit http://www.veteransforpeace.org/.
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