Who are you and where are you from?
I am Clayton Weeks, born and raised in Baton Rouge.
Why do you love bicycling?
Ever gone on a bike ride to clear your mind? I do that as well... sometimes fast, sometimes slow.
Why did you join the Bike Baton Rouge board?
When you become a parent, you see how you want to make your surroundings better for the next generation. As the president of another board, I know how hard it is to find people that are willing to put in the effort to back up their words.
What do you see your role within Bike Baton Rouge? What do you do and what are you good at?
I see my self in more of a "special teams" kinda role, an "enforcer" if you will. What do I mean by this?....You say you are going to join the group and don't....I'll politely hound you for your dues. Need help building a deck, I'll be right over. As you can see, it is a role that rarely gets filled adequately. I promise to do my best to do "stuff".
What would you consider the greatest challenge to bicycling in Baton Rouge?
The mindset that it can't be done. We change the view of the younger generation, we won the war.
What are you and the Bike Baton Rouge board doing to tackle that challenge?
The current and previous presidents have done a phenomenal job of working to facilitate a conversation between the local politicians and their constituents. This includes helping to collect accurate data for various traffic studies, helped with community outreach and just plain ol' bike riding. The more people that are seen riding bikes on daily basis, the more "normal" it will become.
Personally, I've somehow found myself as the president of my neighborhood association. This has given me a good platform to organize neighborhood activities, such as walks and clean-up days. I try to encourage my neighbors to get outside and meet each other. It seems that the way our current society is structured has caused us to forget that there are other people in this world that we need to live alongside. Getting outside, be it on a bike or on a neighborhood trash walk, helps remind us that the other "inconveniences" that we encounter in traffic are actually people. As soon as everyone realizes that we are all people with lives that we should respect, our whole community will become a more pleasurable and safer place to call home.
Also, I run a local bicycle shop where I am able to help enforce the idea that bicycles have the same right to the road as motorized vehicles.
What will bicycling in Baton Rouge be like in 1/5/20 years time?
1 year: Dare I mention a bridge?
5 years: To New Orleans all on a path? (PS. Leave me some gravel!)
20 years: One day, 8 Parishes, all on a bike path.
What does your "ideal" day of bike riding in Baton Rouge look like?
Today?, Easy pedal with my son on the back of my bike. Hopefully, in 10 years I will be able to tell him to pedal to his grandparent's house across town alone.