SBBIKE’s “Cycling to the Movies” was a two-part program for high school teens: a bicycle workshop for safety and mechanics, and then a bike field trip via bicycle to the movies! We went to the 32nd annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival, to see the acclaimed social justice documentary I Am Not Your Negro.
It was a partnership between our SBici Bike Club program at Santa Barbara High School and Future Leaders of America (FLA). It was also great to see students from Santa Barbara HS, San Marcos HS and Dos Pueblos HS.
Over 25 students participated in this program, where they learned about cycling safely on the road, health benefits, ABC quick check and riding with friends. The second half was a short ride from SBHS to the Lobero Theater. There was an added plot twist: the day of the event it started drizzling! But with the students' confidence and excitement, they didn't let that stop them.
Laura Almengor, a Senior and president of the SBici Bike Club at SBHS, said about her experience, “It was fun and a good way to show teens that biking is great way of transportation! The movie was motivational, to always stand for what you believe in and when you do, it's not only helping you, it's helping others as well - to give them courage! Also, my favorite part was collaborating with other teens and sharing my experience in cycling.”
Vicente Garcia, Santa Barbara Volunteer & Youth Organizer of FLA said this:
“The "Cycling to the Movies" program with Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition was a success. Not only did our youth receive training in bicycle safety by their staff, but they also had the opportunity to participate in two of Santa Barbara's most popular cultures today: cycling and the Santa Barbara Film Festival. What better way to develop our youth leaders than by putting them in the center of the learning experience.”
For me as the organizer, I just wanted to see high school students happy and make cycling more accessible for youth in Santa Barbara. The movie was a great treat. I knew that the students would appreciate it, especially in today's political climate. When it came to organizing the program, the saying “the youth are the future” motivated me, and I just love cinema too. It brings me great joy to be able to partner with FLA and to meet their students striving as leaders in our community.
Lastly, I want to sincerely thank all staff and volunteers of the 32nd Santa Barbara International Film Festival for your help in making this program that combines cinema, cycling and youth empowerment in our community a reality!