The first bicycle festival with a bicycle parade on Sunday afternoon in Preetz was a complete success. As many as 400 people of all ages took part to conquer the entire width of Preetz’s main thoroughfares for the first time on bikes, scooters, inline skates or skateboards.
Under the motto “Safe roads for all” they demonstrated in this way with loud bells for a city more bike friendly. The parade, ensured by the Preetz police, started from the market square via Kirchenstrasse, Kührener Strasse, Ragniter Ring, Pohnsdorfer and Kieler Strasse and back to Cathrinplatz.
There, children were able to test their driving skills in various courses and adults could discover some aspects of the city’s mobility concept. There was also the opportunity to write wishes and suggestions as a “post to the mayor”.
The first “Kidical Mass” in Preetz was organized by a small group led by Antje Seebens-Hoyer and Simone Treplin. “Kidical Mass” is a worldwide movement, since 2017 it has also existed in Germany. With colorful bicycle demonstrations, participants – from infants to seniors – conquer the streets and battle through bicycle-friendly cities where even children can ride safely and independently. The event was supported by ADFC Kreis Plön, BUND Plön and Nabu Preetz-Probstei.
Need for action, especially on the way to school
“We ourselves pedal a lot in Preetz and know the weak points, especially when it comes to the way to school,” says Antje Seebens-Hoyer. On Twitter, she happened to come across an online training course that explained how to organize a “childish mass” in your city. “It seemed easy enough, so we decided to do it,” says the young mother. Of course, many preparations and a certain number of permits were then necessary, “but both the municipal administration and the police were very cooperative”, Simone Treplin reports.
The attendees keep passing by and thank the two young women for the “great and perfectly organized campaign”, was the tenor. “We were hoping that many participants would arrive, because there is still a need for action in Preetz. From our point of view, the current concept of city mobility is still not enough, especially as regards children and the way they go to school, “says Seebens-Hoyer.
What’s behind the “Kidical Mass”?
The “Kidical Mass” is a worldwide movement fighting for the rights of children in road traffic. It aims to allow children and teenagers to ride the bicycle safely and independently on the road. Parents will no longer need taxis and ultimately all generations will benefit from sustainable mobility.
The action alliance has also existed in Germany since 2017, calling for action days or weekends in numerous cities, especially in May and September.
Anna and Markus Sonnenholzner from Dammdorf (municipality of Lehmkuhlen) have a similar opinion. “We can get there perfectly from Dammdorf to Preetz on the cycle path, but the closer you get to the center and the main roads, the more difficult and dangerous it becomes,” say the parents of three children aged between one and six.
The concept of mobility falters
Henning von Schöning, city representative in Preetz (Verdi) and district council member of the ADFC in Plön, is dissatisfied that further work on the mobility concept has come to a standstill. “Many Preetzers ask me how things will go. In a city forum on this topic in October last year, participants brought numerous ideas and suggestions. These should be summarized and provided with concrete recommendations for action. In fact, there should be a joint meeting of the committees for civil engineering and building planning after Easter. But it has been postponed and a new date has not yet been set. If the concept with a list of priorities cannot be decided before the summer recess, then it is hardly possible to apply for funding for 2023 in time, “he says.