Tag Archives: bike 2017 profile

2017 Rider Profile: Molly Hunter

Before her feet could reach the pedals!

Before her feet could reach the pedals!

Meet Molly Hunter, seventeenth in our get-to-know-the-riders series. Molly also rode in 2014, and  2015.  The 2017 PA-to-DC ride  will take place  May 19-24. 

I was first motivated to go on the bike trip in 2015, as a freshman in high school. My dad had been on the trip the year before, my mom was very involved in working for PA IPL, and Jon Brockopp, a good friend and neighbor, thought it was a good plan as well. The first year I went I was more nervous about the actual trip than anything else. I recognized that it was in order to raise money for PA IPL and that it was all about fighting climate change, but for me personally it was the ride itself that was the challenge.

This year is a little different. I have changed since 2015, and am now a senior in high school. The two times that I participated in the trip before, I went to Hill visits and discovered that they are one of my least favorite things to do, but I’m starting to see more and more how important it is to talk to legislators, and the impact that I and others of my age can make.Molly Hunter

I love biking and generally being outside, so of course that motivated me to go on yet another bike trip, but I also realize that doing this trip might help me continue to be able to do the same things that I enjoy in the future. Especially now that I’m voting age, I am glad to have had this experience speaking to people in government to help me feel connected.

Molly HunterWhen I’m not training or riding, I play on the State High girls ultimate frisbee team. We recently attended our first tournament and it was a lot of fun. I also was a member of the diving team which was a great way to challenge myself in a relatively low stress situation. Even though all we have at my house are our 3 chickens, I love animals, including snails (see photo above!) and most others. I do not like writing about myself, and I admit that I am ready to be done with high school and move on to the challenges of the wider world.

Molly’s home congregation, Grace Lutheran Church, is a PA IPL member organization.

Donate online to PA IPL in support of the PA-to-DC cyclists
or send a check, memo: bike 2017 to PA IPL 243 S. Allen St. #337, State College, PA 16801


MANY THANKS to our 2017 silver sponsor Sun Directed
NewLogoSM

and our 2017 bronze sponsors, the KBB Beth Richards Group and Freeze/Thaw Cycles 
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      FreezeThaw small

2017 Rider Profile: Dorothy Blair

Dorothy headshotMeet Dorothy Blair, sixteenth in our get-to-know-the-riders series. Dorothy also rode in 2014,  2015, and 2016.  The 2017 PA-to-DC ride  will take place  May 19-24.   

This is my 4th PA-IPL bike ride to Washington. As I recently entered my 70th decade, I thought the third ride would be my last. But here I am again, signed-up for a joy-filled 200 mile cycling tour.

Why do I bike? We have the privilege of cycling through the beauty of Penn’s woods with the comradeship of inspiring and loving biking-mates. We learn varying faith perspectives on climate change responsibility as expressed by our hosts and other folks we meet on the way to D.C. We take on the challenge of executing the light persuasive touch needed in congressional offices.

Dorothy with her son

Dorothy with her son

Also, we whip our winter bodies into biking fitness for the long ride –a task I tackle with enthusiasm because the payoffs are nifty. Though I know l will never be as fast as those large-muscled tall guys, who race ahead while I am pedaling full out just to keep up, I feel wonderful by the end. I consider riding up to the Lincoln Memorial where we traditionally pose for a group photo a real achievement.

Because I am enchanted by the beauty of the Earth and fear its loss, climate change activism has taken over my retirement life. I volunteer with the State College Citizens’ Climate Lobby, coordinating our events tabling, writing letters-to-the-editor, and lobbying both our local congresspersons and senators in the PA/Washington contingent. I work with Fair Districts to move toward gerrymandering-free districts in PA, creating districts where a Republican Congressman might listen to his constituency’s plea to support climate action. I eat modestly, grow my own food, bike to town when weather allows, and use little fossil fuel.

Most of my time is taken up leading the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship toward a Green Sanctuary Certification. Our certification requires 12 programmatic thrusts emphasizing the spiritual nature of eco-justice and earth-care, education, and provision of opportunities for adults and youth to act locally and nationally to reduce their footprint. Certainly, “is-it-green?” has become a frequently asked UUFCC question. We should achieve certification next year.Dorothy on bike

Pennsylvania boasts forested ridges, great soil for farming, steams, open land and moderate weather, enabling the lives of myriad creatures. We will loose our heritage of a beautiful and healthy environment if we choose to ignore nature’s needs in favor of our own “wants,” or let our politicians off the hook. What has happened in Washington D.C. is a wakeup call for action. Those we lobby appreciate our passion for eco-justice and the environment. Citizens owe that to our democracy.

The Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Centre County is a PA IPL member organization.

Donate online to PA IPL in support of the PA-to-DC cyclists
or send a check, memo: bike 2017 to PA IPL 243 S. Allen St. #337, State College, PA 16801


MANY THANKS to our 2017 silver sponsor Sun Directed
NewLogoSM

and our 2017 bronze sponsors, the KBB Beth Richards Group and Freeze/Thaw Cycles 
KBB-logo-2-web
      FreezeThaw small

Learn about sponsoring PA IPL. Become a sponsor.

2017 Rider Profile: Noah Droege

Noah FlipMeet Noah Droege, fifteenth in our get-to-know-the-riders series. Noah also rode in 2015.  The 2017 PA-to-DC ride  will take place  May 19-24.   

Looking toward the future can be a difficult and scary task. On the one hand, a barren wasteland torn apart by war and natural disaster. On the other, a utopian landscape blossoms to life, one where we have put aside our differences to come together and tackle the severe problems facing our world,. While neither one of these extremes is likely to be fully realized, I believe it is our duty to push upwards in search of that perfect world, and that starts with taking action now.

Noah treescapeAs an avid skier, global warming affects me specifically because of the gradual lack of snow that has been plaguing central Pennsylvania’s ski hills. It was so bad that last season I packed up my things and moved out to Colorado to work and ski there. But even there, the beginning and ends of the season are getting worse and worse. There was a major freeride (jumps and tricks and stuff) competition on December 8th, and there was just not enough snow. The crew blew snow on it for a week straight, and still had to cancel the halfpipe completely, as well as remove one of the three jumps so that they had enough snow for the rail section. Soon after however, we started getting snow, and lots of it. One week in January brought in over four feet of snow! It was a great time, but looking out over the white expanse, it reminded me that this view was one worth preserving, so that others might share the same experience that I did.

This bike ride is the perfect step towards, as Bill Nye calls it, “saving the world” (if you haven’t seen his new show I highly recommend it; the first season is on Netflix). It is exactly what I described in my opinion of the perfect world, a group of people hailing from different religions and walks of life coming together as one to fight a common enemy: climate change.

Climate change is a huge issue with very severe repercussions if it is not dealt with soon, but what worries me the most is that those repercussions multiply the longer action is delayed. As of now, the ocean is expected to rise up to 2 meters (6.6 feet) by 2100, a number that could increase further if no action is taken. If the two centigrade limit of global warming is reached, scientists predict sea levels could rise anywhere between 10 and 40 meters (33 to 132 feet)! I don’t want to live in a world where much of California and most of the South gets submerged in water, not to mention Mexico and many South American countries being in severe danger as well. Worse, I don’t want my children and grandchildren to grow up not believing in Santa because the Arctic no longer has ice for much of the year, so his workshop would be at the bottom of the sea. And finally, even worse than that: the knowledge that I could’ve done something about it, and didn’t.

Noah DroegeTo me, this ride is only the first step in the process of bringing together the world and fully stopping climate change. But it is a step nonetheless, and I am hopeful that it can inspire others to take action as well.

Donate online to PA IPL in support of the PA-to-DC cyclists
or send a check, memo: bike 2017 to PA IPL 243 S. Allen St. #337, State College, PA 16801


MANY THANKS to our 2017 silver sponsor Sun Directed
NewLogoSM

and our 2017 bronze sponsors, the KBB Beth Richards Group and Freeze/Thaw Cycles 
KBB-logo-2-web
      FreezeThaw small

Learn about sponsoring PA IPL. Become a sponsor.

 

2017 Rider Profile: Casey Cook

Meet Casey Cook, fourteenth in our get-to-know-the-riders series.  The 2017 PA-to-DC ride  will take place  May 19-24.   Casey is an active member of the 3rd Way Collective at Penn State.

CaseyCookAs a member of the Brethren church I have a very strong connection to the environment. My father is an environmental scientist and I grew up camping, hiking, climbing, and doing a whole manor of outdoor activities with my whole family. I just finished my freshman year at Penn State and I am majoring in Education.

Education about the environment needs to be prioritized in our classrooms. As a teacher I hope to teach my students about the world and instill the same connection to the environment in them that I have. I want to preserve the world so that my children and grandchildren can experience it as I have.

[This series of articles  provide a sample of Brethren thinking on climate change.  They are written by Sharon Yohn and Laura White, members of Stone Church of the Brethren in Huntingdon, and we’ll see them on the first daytime stop of the 2017 ride.] 

Donate online to PA IPL in support of the PA-to-DC cyclists
or send a check, memo: bike 2017 to PA IPL 243 S. Allen St. #337, State College, PA 16801


MANY THANKS to our 2017 silver sponsor Sun Directed
NewLogoSM

and our 2017 bronze sponsors, the KBB Beth Richards Group and Freeze/Thaw Cycles 
KBB-logo-2-web
      FreezeThaw small

Learn about sponsoring PA IPL. Become a sponsor.

2017 Rider Profile: Jon Brockopp

Jon Brockopp Alison Cricket Greg Williams Barb Ballenger 2016 conferneceMeet Jon Brockopp, thirteenth in our get-to-know-the-riders series.  Jon is the originator (2012) and leader of the annual trip, so you can browse through his  2016, 2015, and 2014, profiles, too.  The 2017 PA-to-DC ride  will take place  May 19-24.  

This is my sixth year leading the PA IPL bike trip to DC, and it’s going to be our biggest ever. I am so grateful for the way that both PA IPL and this trip have grown over the years, and thankful also to the many people who support our venture.Jon Brockopp Noah Droege 2016

I am generally a positive person, and so I ride to bring a message of hope, to inspire others to act. I am particularly pleased to have so many young people on the ride this year, including my son, Noah. There is nothing better than being out on a bicycle in the beautiful Pennsylvania countryside, with 17 of my best friends!

But I also ride because we are in desperate times and my faith calls me to action. As a Lutheran, I regard sin and evil as everyday realities, and I feel it is important to meditate on our sins and mourn what we have lost. We passed three significant milestones this past year: 1) 400 ppm of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere; 2) one full degree Celsius above the 20th century average; 3) 2016 was the hottest year on record.

Almost 35 years ago, the National Academy of Sciences completed a major assessment, warning of the warming effect of burning fossil fuels. Had we responded then, we could have saved thousands of lives and billions of dollars. We did not, and we are responsible for the deaths of those who have died in heat, drought, and flash flooding exacerbated by climate change. We are responsible for animal habitats destroyed and for ocean acidification.
I believe in sin… but I also believe in redemption. As a species, we have an awful tendency to exploit and abuse the gift of the natural world – I know that tendency in myself! But we also have an amazing ability to care for and protect all living creatures.

Jon Brockopp 2016 send-offI ride to model a lower carbon lifestyle, to talk to my Congressional representatives and urge them to action. But my faith tells me that this is not the root of the problem. Rather, I agree with Pope Francis that at the root of climate disruption is a problem of human ecology: our disconnect from one another and from Creation. When I ride, I slow down. I talk to my companions and to folks along the way.

I ride to rediscover, every year, the beauty of human compassion.

Donate online to PA IPL in support of the PA-to-DC cyclists
or send a check, memo: bike 2017 to PA IPL 243 S. Allen St. #337, State College, PA 16801


MANY THANKS to our 2017 silver sponsor Sun Directed
NewLogoSM

and our 2017 bronze sponsors, the KBB Beth Richards Group and Freeze/Thaw Cycles 
KBB-logo-2-web
      FreezeThaw small

Learn about sponsoring PA IPL. Become a sponsor.

2017 Rider Profile: Carina Renée

Carina [Raynar]Meet Carina Renée, twelfth in our get-to-know-the-riders series.  The 2017 PA-to-DC ride  will take place  May 19-24.  

Hi!! My name is Carina. I am 13 years old and I go to Park Forest Middle School and I’m one of the youngest people to be doing the PA IPL Bike Ride. I have decided to go on this trip to show that I am supportive about the environment. This is my second year to go on the ride. I’m a very outgoing person. Once you get to know me, I will talk your ear off. I like to sing, read, draw, and play volleyball. I also like to hunt and fish and just like being outside and away from the city and in a quieter place. I shot my first deer this year and am proud about that.

I have noticed there are environmental problems that many people aren’t even aware of. For example, there are melting glaciers from climate change which is very scary for us all. I think that it is good that we are making this ride to help out even if we are just a small group.

I think by riding and advertising it on different popular websites we can let people see that the environment is a very important thing; more important than deciding what type of phone case you want or choosing your nail color. We are trying to inform people of the actual problem here that will affect us all if we don’t fix it. The food chain will go all out of sorts if all the ice melts and many kinds of animals will die and we will all suffer. Life won’t ever be the same if we don’t get people to notice this soon.

Donate online to PA IPL in support of the PA-to-DC cyclists
or send a check, memo: bike 2017 to PA IPL 243 S. Allen St. #337, State College, PA 16801


MANY THANKS to our 2017 silver sponsor Sun Directed
NewLogoSM

and our 2017 bronze sponsors, the KBB Beth Richards Group and Freeze/Thaw Cycles 
KBB-logo-2-web
      FreezeThaw small

Learn about sponsoring PA IPL. Become a sponsor.