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The Kitchen of Bike Fixin’

Samantha Lyon ’08 strongly feels that there should be more bicycles—and people using them—on the Smith campus. Lyon is so committed to promoting bicycles as an environmentally responsible form of transportation and as an enjoyable pastime that last fall she and a few of her fellow activists on campus started a group called the “Bicycle Kitchen,” which invites other bike lovers and riders to learn about bikes, safety, maintenance and benefits.

Samantha Lyon, left, and Jane Jones, right, in the “kitchen.” Photos by Fish/Parham.

The group welcomes bike enthusiasts and those who want to learn about bikes to its weekly gathering, which they call “Bike Fixin’.” The Bicycle Kitchen also offers a bike library, from which students, faculty and staff members can rent bikes for a nominal fee or in exchange for working in the “kitchen.”

Part of the group’s mandate is to provide a safer campus environment for those who ride bikes. “We believe there are too many cars roaming around campus, and this is not safe for people trying to get around using human power,” Lyon says.

In March, the group opened a bike repair shop in the boathouse, where bikers can stop to get their bikes fixed, ask questions about bicycles or simply to share bicycle knowledge and news. But it’s not all work, say Bicycle Kitchen members, who plan to organize periodic bike rides locally.

So far, say the group members, the campus response has been very positive, and the group has become a chartered organization with the Student Government Association.

Charter members of the Bicycle Kitchen are Lyon, Anya Domlesky ’06, Maria Gonchoroff ’07, Jane Jones ’09 and Sarah Mossberg ’07. Visit their Web site for more information.—ESW

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