December 11, 2009

Trees and Packages Delivered by Bike, Oh My!

If you’re getting in the holiday spirit, it might as well be a conscious and eco-friendly one.

Last year UPS started bike delivery in southern Washington and part of Oregon. Of course delivering anything by bike is practically synonymous with Portland and Northwest cycle culture, so it was no surprise that the first UPS delivery networks were a hit. They were so popular in fact that this year, UPS has expanded the service, adding an additional 45 routes in northern California.

And according to the testimonial by UPS bike delivery guy Justin Hurst, bike delivery is great because it’s efficient and economic — UPS saves about $45,000 to $50,000 in fuel and maintenance costs — and you don’t have to be a cycling aficionado to take part.

“No I’m not much of a, like a, bike rider. One of those bicyclists or anything.”

But let’s get back to the great city of Portland. This year, residents of the coffee chugging, fixie riding city can not only get their Christmas presents delivered by bike, they can get the necessary holiday tree too. Trees by Bike is a small collective of Portland cyclists who deliver locally grown trees; and they even donate 10% of proceeds to charity.

This collective wouldn’t be from Portland if it didn’t have a little sass however, and we have to give Trees by Bike Yule Dispatcher some cred for his joyful prose:

“Holiday cheer need no automotive support,
why not is it spread with wheels and legs and just heart?
Internal combustion, need not apply,
for next XMAS we’re riding bikes with trees stacked ridiculously high.”

“For the sake of all goodness, we must do this well.
Mount up on your bikes and deliver like hell:
Now, Riders! Now, Racers! Now, Couriers, and Gophers!
On, Commuters! On, Street kids! On, Hipsters and Bro-dogs!”

“To the valleys and gorges! To the top of the hills!
Now ride away! ride away! Coffee helps, for reals!”

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