Commentary

A Unique Bikes to Bloom Project

Published on
March 22, 2024
Contributors
Allies and Partners
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By Mary McDonald

On March 23, Tinkerhaus Community Makerspace is embarking on a project that encourages sustainability and climate resilience through hands-on experiential learning. We are building bike parking racks and raised planter beds for the community. We are building them to encourage a more sustainable community, a place that makes biking easy and a place that attracts pollinators. But that’s not all… we are building them with local youth so that they will both learn how to build a large, functional item and so they can know the feeling of doing something to make the community more sustainable. This project is aptly called Bikes to Blooms.

We have the plans and measurements. We will order lumber and hardware. We have volunteer teachers with lots of experience and as a makerspace, we have lots of tools. Although we have already started reaching out to local groups that work with youth to recruit interested participants, we still have room for more student workers.

In addition to creating places for people to park their bicycles as they ride through town, we will be building planting boxes for organizations that would like to grow food or flowers. We are offering these to The Huddle, The Tannery, Newburyport Youth Services, houses of worship, the library, etc. If your organization would like to be involved and receive a planting box, please contact us via the information provided.

At a time when the choices we make in our daily lives significantly impact air quality and greenhouse gas emissions, it's important for us to recognize the power of collective action. Through initiatives like the Bikes to Blooms project, members of a community can take meaningful steps towards a greener future. Whether it’s through participating in community projects such as this one, adopting more sustainable habits, or simply spreading the word, every action counts.

Makerspaces like Tinkerhaus serve as communal hubs where individuals can collaborate on projects, sharing tools, ideas, and expertise that might otherwise be out of reach. Tinkerhaus has an intentional green agenda, focusing on the reuse and repurposing of donated materials and tools. The mission of Tinkerhaus is built on three foundational beliefs: the innate human capacity for creativity, the future’s dependence on innovation, and our commitment to fostering a sustainable tomorrow.

Tinkerhaus is located at 3 Graf Road, Newburyport. If you’d like to see what else we have to offer, come for a tour on the third Saturday of the month from 10:30 -12, or email mary@tinkerhaus.org to arrange a time so you can better understand how we support individuals and groups that need tools to work with to develop an envisioned project.

We are fortunate to have the Bikes to Blooms project supported by the generosity of volunteers and through a Community Partner grant from the Resilient Newburyport: Community Action Project. The Community Action Project is a two-year effort organized by the City’s Climate Resiliency Committee whose goal is to strengthen community ties and foster resilience against the impacts of climate change. Reach out to resilientnewburyport@gmail.com or sign up for Resiliency News and Announcements at https://www.cityofnewburyport.com/subscribe to learn more.

All of us can play a part in securing a sustainable and resilient future for Newburyport.

ACES Youth Corps members encourage students to participate in this free and unique project by registering at www.tinkerhaus.org. The initial build event is happening on Saturday, March 23, 2024. In addition, organizations interested in obtaining a Bikes to Bloom bike parking rack or
raised planter bed are encouraged to reach out to mary@tinkerhaus.org.

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