Volume 17 • Issue 1

Pirate Bike Program Launched

Pinsky Speaks
Heidi Meyer Curry (left) and President Schrum (right) lead the inaugural Pirate Bike ride.

The Pirate Bike Program provides the latest means of transportation for Southwestern students, faculty and staff. There are now 60 bright, yellow bikes scattered across campus and ready to ride anytime, day or night. Members of the campus community may ride the bikes from one campus spot to another and leave them outside their destination, unlocked and awaiting the next rider.

“The students got this program rolling, but if not for the support of Heidi Meyer Curry, this program would not have taken off,” says Jerry Brody, vice president for student life.

Curry, sister of the late Wally Meyer ’86, provided the financial resources for Southwestern to purchase 30 bikes for the program. At the Pirate Bike Kickoff Event on Sept. 20, Curry shared, “My brother loved to ride … to simply get on board and ride. What a friendly, environmentally safe way to travel. I challenge you to get on board and enjoy the ‘free ride …’ I hope you embrace these bikes. I know Wally is watching us all and smiling.”

Brody added, “This is a wonderful response to Wally’s memory.” A small plaque on each bike reads: “In memory of Wally Meyer ’86, for his zest of life and cycling.”

Students are very enthusiastic about the program. In fact, four student group representatives sat on the Pirate Bike committee. Alex Casiano, a senior on the committee, comments, “The Pirate Bike program builds trust within Southwestern and Georgetown as well. It builds a sense of community.”

Excitement about the program has already spread beyond the student body. Shortly after the Pirate Bike unveiling, one alumni couple purchased two additional bikes for the program and two more for themselves. Southwestern also received an anonymous gift in support of the program from the parent of a former student. This gift funded an additional 30 bikes.

For now, use of the bikes is limited to the Southwestern campus. However, as early as Spring 2006, the Pirate Bike Program will extend student use to the greater Georgetown area. The expanded program will shrink the distance between campus and the Georgetown Square. Students, faculty and staff may also find use for the bikes on the trails in and around town.

The campus police department also plays an instrumental role in the program’s development by handling administrative matters and coordinating daily maintenance of the bikes by students. Students may check out bike helmets through the campus police office.