The warmer weather and end of another school year mean there will likely be more people riding their bicycles to various places around Newton. To highlight safe bicycling practices, the Healthy Harvey Coalition will present "Street Smarts" at 3 p.m. Saturday at the Newton Public Library, 720 N. Oak.

 

"People do ride their bikes here," said Jannell Johannes, assistant youth services supervisor at the Newton Public Library. "It is a pretty popular destination."

 

The free session will talk about various topics including road etiquette, signaling and Newton's road rules.

 

"We're going to talk to the youth about bicycle safety and maintenance," said Healthy Harvey Coalition Coordinator Lorrie Kessler.

 

Bicyclists will be shown how to check their tire pressure, adjust their seat and handlebars and keep their bicycle's chain oiled.

 

"Bring a bike and be ready to learn about it," Kessler said. "(The library) is a good location for people to walk or bike to."

 

The League of American Bicyclists states that 40 percent of all trips in the U.S. are less than two miles long and that from 2000 to 2013, the number of bicycle commuters in the U.S. grew by more than 62 percent.

 

It is important to learn to be safe while riding your bicycle to work or play to avoid injuries to yourself or others.

 

Riding a bicycle can have a beneficial effect on your health, strengthening muscles and bones. Biking can improve balance, provide a good aerobic workout and build endurance as well.

 

"Our summer theme is 'Build a Better World,' and part of that is health," Johannes said. "We're concerned with the health of families and kids around town."

 

"Street Smarts" will be an hour and a half long, but there are plenty of other options for people looking to learn more about bicycles beyond the presentation available at the library.

 

"We definitely have books about bicycle repair, safety, guides and manuals that the public is welcome to check out for additional information," Johannes said. "We have books on collector bikes, the restoration of classic bicycles and bicycle history."

 

She also noted that May is National Bike Challenge Month and resources are available for tracking the distance you cover on a bicycle.

 

"If people want to challenge each other to ride their bikes, we will have information on that," Johannes said.

 

Bicyclists are encouraged to remember to bring a bike lock with them — and use it — when stopping by the library.

 

"This is a public place," Johannes said.

 

"Street Smarts" is aimed primarily at teens and adults, but other family members are invited to listen in.

 

"A lot of people ride their bikes around town," Johannes said. "This would be good for all ages to hear about."

 

For more information about "Street Smarts," visit https://www.newtonplks.org or call 316-283-2890.