Portland Kids Ride 'Bike Bus' to School

A group of elementary school students in Portland, Oregon, avoided the usual drop-off traffic by making their way to school in an adult-led group bike ride called a “bike bus” on October 5.

This video, recorded by Alison Lea Warlitner, shows the group of children, accompanied by adults, riding in an organized cluster on their way to Alameda Elementary School. Warlitner said the bike bus happens every Wednesday “rain or shine, and there is a lot of rain in the Pacific Northwest.”

She told Storyful her children, who are in first and second grade, take mindful movement classes with Coach Sam Balto, the organizer of the bike bus, who is an outspoken advocate for active transportation. At his previous job as a physical education teacher at Ellis Elementary in Roxbury, Massachusetts, he started the Safe Routes to School program, where he encouraged groups of kids to form “walking buses.”

The bike bus has turned out to be quite the hit, and Coach Balto recently put together a how-to guide for communities who may want to start their own bike bus, as one mom in Utah is trying to do.

“I absolutely love the bike bus. It not only motivates my kids on Wednesday mornings to get up, as they love taking part in it, it’s also incredible to see how the entire community turns out to cheer the kids on,” Warlitner said. Credit: Alison Lea Warlitner via Storyful

Video transcript