How to run a first meeting

Note: This is the second in a series of posts* documenting the efforts of a previously unorganized group of Manchester, New Hampshire, bicyclists to advocate for improvements to the city’s bicycle infrastructure. 

stencil

If you’ve never asked a group of bicyclists about the challenges they face riding in a city, be prepared for an onslaught on responses:

  • There’s too much traffic!
  • The cars drive too fast!
  • There aren’t any bike racks!

As a Manchester bicyclist myself, I share many of these frustrations. But heretofore, I’ve only really ever thought them to myself. But last Friday night at a bar called Milly’s, I discovered like-minded souls who also are also annoyed with bicyclists who don’t obey the law, and drivers who think bicyclists should be relegated to sidewalks (something illegal here in Manchester).

As was discussed last week, this past Friday I helped to organize a meeting of local bicycle enthusiasts here in Manchester, New Hampshire, a dozen of whom showed up in response to Facebook post lamenting a lack of bicycle infrastructure here in the city.

Turning a complaint into an initiative

Note: This is the first in a series of posts documenting the efforts of a previously unorganized group of Manchester, New Hampshire, bicyclists to advocate for improvements to the city’s bicycle infrastructure.

It started innocently enough.

On Sept. 7, I posted a picture on my Facebook page of three bicycles (the one in the foreground being mine) parked within 50 feet of each other on a single downtown block here in Manchester, New Hampshire:

facebook bike rack pic

 

The point I made was that it is high time this city of 110,000 make minimal investments in bicycle infrastructure like bike lanes and bike racks. Demand clearly exists. And you can see from the flurry of likes, shares and comments this photo elicited, a number of my fellow Mancunians agreed. It was suggested in the comments that we meet to discuss what we might do to advocate for said bicycle infrastructure improvements.

Meat Locker Pilot Project

I never really thought about it before, but how did people store meat before refrigerator/freezer units became commercially available?

meat csa

Meat CSA #4/ Garin Fons/CC BY-NC-SA

Some people, it would seem, rented space in communal freezers. And in a case of what’s old is new again, in Ithaca, N.Y., they’re doing it again.

The Meat Locker Project is the brainchild of two Cornell University Cooperative Extension specialists. The project, which consists of two 10 foot by 14 foot lockers in downtown Ithaca and nearby Corning, will:

provide consumers with a convenient space for bulk meat storage, saving consumers money while expanding the meat market and farmers’ profits. The Project was inspired by the communal freezers that were popular prior to the 1960s, when families started purchasing personal freezer units and buying grocery store meat.

Meat locker users will pay between three and five dollars per month to rent one of 50 lockers, and they will be able to access their lockers during designated hours. Farmers don’t have to pay into the locker system; consumers can choose to purchase meat from any farmer. LeRoux hopes the freezer space will incentivize consumers to up their meat purchases, expanding the local meat market.

Read more at youngfarmers.org.