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Pedaling safety: Bike video provides tips for tourists, locals on shared paths

By Staff | Jun 10, 2015

A new bike video will help make the popular activity safer. CRAIG GARRETT

It’s not always a ride in the park.

The Sanibel Bicycle Club has released “Cycling On Sanibel,” an educational video designed to promote safer cycling and to educate tourists and locals on the city’s shared-use paths. The idea is for bicyclists to better prepare for a ride on sometimes congested pathways. The nearly seven-minute video uses graphics and clear instructions on bike courtesy, rules for passing and crossing streets. Locals were used in performing, including Sanibel’s former vice mayor Doug Congress.

Production of the new video was a collaborative effort initiated by the Sanibel Bicycle Club, with support from the city of Sanibel, Lee County Tourist Development Council, Sanibel and Captiva Islands Chamber of Commerce, Billy’s Rentals, Finnimore’s Bike and Beach Rentals, Sanibel-Captiva Association of Realtors and Bike Florida.

Recognizing the growing popularity of the internet as a tool used by travelers to gather information about destinations, the video is available on YouTube, the city’s website, social media and other links used by those planning vacation trips to Sanibel. The video is designed to appeal to adults and to families with children, promoters said.

Commenting on the video, Sanibel Bicycle Club president Diane Olsson said, “Over the years, our club has produced a variety of materials designed to educate cyclists and promote safe biking behavior.

TradeMarky Films in Sanibel produced the nearly seven minute video. The boutique firm’s director is Mark Meyers (left). CRAIG GARRETT

“Those efforts included posters, fliers, and bike rack signs. With this new video message we expect to engage visitors in a more impactful way before they even arrive here. Also, having the other major partners supporting this effort will help drive visibility for the video.”

Islanders in April may have glimpsed crews with TradeMarky Films shooting scenes for the instructional video. Occasional injuries, right-of-way misunderstandings, more people using pathways in Sanibel and Captiva, other factors prompted funding for the short film. Sanibel has been recognized as top-tier bike friendly community by the League of American Bicyclists. Pathways in the video showed usage by walkers/joggers, bikers, those in wheelchairs, skateboarders, those pushing baby strollers, even bicyclists pulling boats. Total budget for the film was about $23,000.

The video is a true home town production featuring numerous local residents as on-camera spokespeople and background extras.

Performing principal roles in the video are islander Henry Crater, a Canterbury student with a lengthy list of stage performances; Doug Congress, former Sanibel councilman and vice mayor; Neal Halleran, Sanibel resident and host of the BIG ARTS Forum series; and Anna Nguyen, Fort Myers resident and frequent Sanibel visitor.

Production was overseen by Sanibel residents Paul Taylor, producer, and Meyers.

“Paul and Mark were the perfect team to work on this project,” said Patti Sousa, Sanibel Bicycle Club vice president who oversaw the project. “They understood the challenge we have on Sanibel with so many bikes on the path, particularly during season, and they understood the serious message we want to convey.

“They also realized that our video had to be fun and entertaining to get viewers to watch it.”

Video links are at the Sanibel Bicycle Club website/www.sanibelbicycleclub.org, or on Sanibel’s website, which is at www.mysanibel.com.