This Friday, September 22nd, Bard will be joining 1,500 cities in 40 countries by celebrating Car Free Day. Although the name pretty much explains the meaning- Car Free Day is about going car free or reducing car use- the day also provides an opportunity to think about how we get around and how we can change our transportation practices to help the environment.
Besides the obvious benefit of less Climate Change-inducing pollution, less cars means less time wasted in traffic and less space that needs to be taken up by parking lots and garages. What could we do with that time and space? Asking these kinds of questions is what Car Free Day is about.
There are lots of ways for you to get involved in Car Free Day on the Bard Campus. A bike ride to Red Hook is leaving from the Kline Bus Stop at 12pm and again at 4pm. The ride takes about 30 minutes, gives riders a great workout, and provides an easy way to get into town. Another bike ride will leave the Taste Budd’s Cafe in Red Hook at 8:15am and go to the Bard Campus.
200 upperclassmen have already signed up for Bard Rideshare, a school-wide program that allows participants to carpool to their destinations with people in the Bard community, and beyond if you choose to extend your possible ride partners to anyone in New York State. You don’t need a car to sign up. Here is the link to the program’s website: https://511nyrideshare.org/web/bard
Each Bard Student who signed up for Bard Rideshare was entered in a raffle to win a Cliff tote bag. Congratulations to the 5 winners! Anyone who signs the pledge on the Hudson Valley Car Free Day website will be automatically entered to win prizes, from a 50 dollar Visa gift card to free bike rentals to meals at local restaurants. Sign up and/or learn more about Car Free Day here: https://hudsonvalleycarfreeday.com/
Maybe take this opportunity to educate yourself about the excellent public transportation network Bard is a part of. The Bard Shuttle is a free and easy way to get around the campus and the surrounding area. The Loop bus system covers Dutchess County and makes stops at the Bard Campus. The Amtrak and Metro North Hudson Line trains can get you into the city without the hassle of parking or the expense of an Uber. Here is the link to the Bard transportation site, which can give you details into all modes of transportation in and around the Bard Campus: http://blogs.bard.edu/transportation/
People think of all kinds of creative ways to get the day’s work done without using cars or by using cars less, whether it takes the form of public transportation, biking, walking, carpooling, and yes, occasionally kayaking. However you celebrate Car Free Day, take the opportunity to rethink how you move around.
The Hudson Valley Car Free Day website: https://hudsonvalleycarfreeday.com/
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Picture courtesy of Clipart
Class of 2021