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Avoid “traffic-geddon” – Tips for people biking to welcome Senator Sanders to Monterey

Bicycling Monterey extends respect to everyone who takes time to inform themselves about candidates and issues, then votes according to their own beliefs and conscience. Register and vote:

For more images from this May 31, 2016 event, scroll below these tips on how to 

Avoid “traffic-geddon.”

Bernie Sanders is coming to town and he wants you to ride your bike—at least that seems like the most viable option as traffic-geddon hits Colton Hall near downtown Monterey Tuesday night.” So says Ana Ceballos of the Monterey County Weekly, and so says Bicycling Monterey too!
When there are crowd-gathering events in Monterey County, from Independence Day festivities to the Monterey Jazz Festival to many more, Bicycling Monterey encourages reducing traffic by biking, or bike-and-ride to the event. That’s true for the Bernie Sanders rally too, with City of Monterey advising  over 2,000 people are expected to attend. [Actual attendance turned out to be about 7,800 people, plus a few hundred who came, then decided not to enter due to the long lines.] As with many special events, some street closures will be in effect and traffic will be heavy. You can help by biking, even partway, to your destination.

At a rally preparing for the June 7 election, Presidential candidate U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont will be speaking at historic Colton Hall in the City of Monterey on Tuesday, May 31, 2016 at 7 p.m. Click here for Monterey County Herald story, which also includes info on his 1 p.m. rally across the Monterey Bay in Santa Cruz, and his 10 a.m. non-public press conference on Wednesday, June 1 in Spreckels about fracking [see the full video of that fracking presser in Spreckels; click here].

 Scroll down this post for photos of nearby bike parking, and other tips.

For event details on the Sanders campaign site:

Click here.

Include there is an RSVP form, such as some of what not to bring, recommended arrival time (early!), etc.

First: Why bike, or bike-and-ride, to this event?

Freedom - bike rack atop car

Large crowds are expected. Tuesdays are also the weekly Old Monterey (downtown) farmers market on Alvarado Street (4-7 p.m.– closing an hour early today, due to anticipated heavier traffic). Farmers market hours are always a heavy traffic day for downtown.  Add in Bernie fans heading to nearby Colton Hall, and you can see why traffic will be congested. That’s a good reason to bike or bike-and-ride.
A future to believe in: Besides, you do care about biking for Mother Earth whenever you can, yes?
And that physical exercise–one of the many benefits of bicycling–you do #FeelTheBern with pleasure, yes? So hop on a bike and enjoy easier parking while you benefit yourself, the community, and the planet.
Any mile of biking beats a mile of driving, and on a day like this, even a few blocks of biking reduces downtown traffic congestion, parking hassles, and other frustration. So park your vehicle or take the bus and enjoy biking the remainder of the way.

Derrick Chao and Kyle Ingebretson with Tips poster

Show off for Bernie: bike polite!

Whether on a street, a sidewalk (where allowable–and with extra caution), the coastal trail, or elsewhere, please be mindful of others. That includes people walking, biking, skating, rolling in a wheelchair, driving, or otherwise getting about. Boost harmony everywhere you go. Be a good ambassador for cycling–and for your candidate: bike polite. 

Signs - share trail (new) 001

Follow CA bike laws, and Monterey County ordinances, including City of Monterey’s about sidewalk riding.
Bike law summary: Be Cool, Be Safe – Bike Law Summary & Advocating for Biking
In Spanish too, bike equipment requirements and law summary: Leyes de ciclismo de CA – Laws for bicyclists in CA (Spanish, English) – Summary

3. Bicycle Riding Skills, Bike Safety, and California Bike Laws—for Children, Teens, and Adults

The 30-section guide above includes Monterey County sidewalk ordinances, riding skills, and safety tips, click here. For details about sidewalk riding in City of Monterey, once you’re in that section type “Alvarado” in your browser find window and BOOM! you’re on it.
90-second audio and other info about sidewalk riding, click here.


Bicycle maps / Mapas de bicicletas – en español and English for Monterey County

 Be prepared but travel light!
Remember to take your bike lights into the event with you (so they aren’t at risk of being stolen off your bicycle). However, daypacks, courier bags, and such can’t be taken into this event. Event security advises bringing only small items such as keys (your bike lock key!) and cell phone.
So plan ahead to carry only a small pouch, etc. for your bike lights and other necessary items, such as a small bike tire pump if you’re biking any distance. Of course, during store hours, there are bike repair shops downtown.

19. Night Rides / Biking in the Dark

The woman below has been on the Bernie bandwagon–make that bike-wagon!–since at least last December, when we spotted her in downtown Monterey.


13. Bike Valet and Other Bicycle Parking—Including Etiquette and Laws

Bicycle Parking

Check with event organizers as to whether a bike valet station will be provided at or near Colton Hall. Wish there was, but we haven’t heard of one yet. Our most common bike valet provider in Monterey County is likely already tied up with the weekly farmers market.

So make use of these bike parking tips.  If lots of people bike to this event, which makes sense, then Colton Hall’s minimal bike racks will quickly be full.
Remember to lock up! See bike security tips  too. And if using the racks at Monterey Public Library (kitty corner from Colton Hall), be aware that bike racks at rear of the library are more subject to theft/vandalism than those in front.Bike parking Monterey Library front 2015
Some downtown parking options, all within easy walking distance of Colton Hall…

By Trader Joe’s

Jacks TJs racks

By Peet’s (across from Monterey Transit Plaza, near Trader Joe’s)

Jordan and Jack Uptown Mtry racks

On Alvarado Street, by MYO (at top of Alvarado, nearest Monterey Salinas Transit)

MYO Monterey bike parking

Other places on Alvarado Street, look for low-to-the-ground black racks, easy to overlook (and please don’t lock to a tree)

Rack - Alvarado St 8 Jan 2012 (4)

On Calle Principal (the street parallel to and between Alvarado and Pacific Streets–Pacific is the street in front of Colton Hall), look for Calle P’s red racks…

Bikerack Calle Princ - DSC01497

Live Art - red rack Calle P

Want a place to park with video surveillance?

It’s a little longer walk, but there’s video coverage at the Monterey Sport Center on Franklin Street…

Surveillance - racks msctr - DSC00307
Plenty of bike parking at the City of Monterey Sports Center

Above: Plenty of bike parking at the City of Monterey Sports Center

There’s video surveillance too at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies (MIIS) campus, not far from Colton Hall (most likely intended for students and staff, so you may want to check with campus security first)…

MIIS bicycle security--ever vigilant, the electronic eye.

Get oriented to downtown Monterey,

including Colton Hall’s Friendly Plaza

Below, in “Where the Plazas Are,” see photos of all the downtown plazas, plus other plazas in City of  Monterey.




Remember that mention of “bike polite”?

Keep it in mind when exploring Monterey while you’re waiting to #FeelTheBern. You’ll see many plazas in Monterey, such as Bonifacio Plaza off the Tuesday 4-8 p.m. farmers market on Alvarado (downtown Monterey’s “Main St”); many plazas if biking to history spots; Custom House Plaza and Alvarado Mall too near Old Fisherman’s Wharf /Wharf I and the beach and coastal trail; Simoneau Plaza in the downtown Monterey Transit Plaza (where Monterey-Salinas Transit buses come together downtown–MST is the county’s most popular bike-and-ride option), and more.

In many plazas, it makes sense to walk your bike, even if not required.3 Seaside teens - walk your bike (2)

Where the Plazas Are in the City of Monterey–and How to Preserve Their Charm

Cali Roots visitors wanna come back for Reggae Fest

Above: on Alvarado Street

Below: view from the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail, Marina

Leo Kodl - Freedom - DSC01333
Above photo courtesy of Leo Kodl

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Photos from May 31, 2016 Monterey rally







This post was published on 31 May 2016. One or more changes last made to this post on 10 March 2020.

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