It's spring! Get out and enjoy the warmer weather with these events - Metropolitan Planning Council

Skip to main content

It's spring! Get out and enjoy the warmer weather with these events

Metropolitan Planning Council

Spring and summer are a time for getting out of the car and enjoying the warm weather.

With spring finally upon us, now is the time for many transportation-related events and activities. From Bike to Work Week to World Environment Day, it's a great time of year for those who choose to get out of their cars and instead use bikes, public transportation and their feet to get around. Especially after such a brutal winter, we at the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) are looking forward to getting out in the open air!

Here is a (non-exhaustive, I'm sure) summary of events in May and June to make the most of the summer season. Please leave a comment if you know of and want to promote others:


Bike to Work Day + Week, Part I

The League of American Bicyclists designates May as National Bike Month, to encourage more people to consider biking as a commute mode. Activities include Bike to Work Day on Friday, May 16, and Bike to Work Week, which is May 12 to 16.

Bike the Drive

Locally, the Active Transportation Alliance holds its MB Financial Bike the Drive event on Sunday, May 25. This is an opportunity to bike on Lake Shore Drive car-free!

National Motorcycle Safety Month

Shifting gears, May is also National Motorcycle Safety Month, sponsored by the Itasca-based National Safety Council. As the weather gets warmer, and more motorcyclists take to the roads, it’s vital that drivers are aware of them.


World Environment Day

In the Northern Hemisphere, World Environment Day is celebrated on Thursday, June 5; Friday, June 6; or Saturday, June 7, depending on location. World Environment Day was established by the United Nations in 1972 to promote worldwide awareness of environmental issues, climate change and actions to protect the environment. The Chicago Botanic Garden in Glencoe, a short train ride (or long, leisurely bike ride) north of the city, will celebrate World Environment Day on Saturday, June 7, with speakers including WGN-TV Chief Meteorologist, Tom Skilling. For more information about World Environment Day, visit the website at

Bike Commuter Challenge + Bike to Work Week, Part II

Local area transportation authorities and advocacy groups will celebrate the Bike Commuter Challenge and Bike to Work Week from June 13 to 20, and Dump the Pump on Thursday, June 19. Sponsored by Active Transportation Alliance, the Bike Commuter Challenge pits Chicago-area businesses against each other as their employees compete for most miles biked to and from work, and a host of other prizes. In 2013, MPC won the challenge for highest percentage of employees biking (by the skin of our teeth), and we’re all tuning up our bikes for another great competition this year.

RTA, CTA, Metra, Pace, I-GO (now Enterprise Car Share), Active Transportation Alliance and Chicago Water Taxi participated in the 2013 Dump the Pump Campaign. Visit RTA’s website in the upcoming weeks at for more information about the 2014 campaign.

National Safety Month

The National Safety Council designates June as National Safety Month, which brings attention to key safety issues. One highlight is “Put an End to Distracted Driving," June 23 to 29. Even though it has been a violation of state law to drive while talking on a hand held cell phone since Jan. 1, 2013, many people continue to flout the rule. Everyone has had a frustrating or harrowing experience with other drivers who couldn’t put their phones down—let’s make “Put an End to Distracted Driving” an all-year event.

These are some of our favorite events, to get you started. If you’re craving the outdoors after a long winter in Chiberia, be sure to check out these opportunities and others!


Commute Options


No comments

More posts by Tim

All posts by Tim »

MPC on Twitter

Follow us on Twitter »

Stay in the loop!

MPC's Regionalist newsletter keeps you up to date with our work and our upcoming events.?

Subscribe to Regionalist

Most popular news

Browse by date »

This page can be found online at

Metropolitan Planning Council 140 S. Dearborn St.
Suite 1400
Chicago, Ill. 60603
312 922 5616

Sign up for newsletter and alerts »

Shaping a better, bolder, more equitable future for everyone

For more than 85 years, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has partnered with communities, businesses, and governments to unleash the greatness of the Chicago region. We believe that every neighborhood has promise, every community should be heard, and every person can thrive. To tackle the toughest urban planning and development challenges, we create collaborations that change perceptions, conversations—and the status quo. Read more about our work »

Donate »