In the spirit of the upcoming Daily Camera’s Aging at Altitude Expo on November 2, an event which provides seniors with resources, tips and advice about aging in Boulder County, senior living is top of mind right now. Often families moving to Boulder bring along their elderly parents to keep them nearby. However for seniors, loneliness can set in, not knowing any of the people who are now their neighbors. Going outside and being active is one of the keys to health and happiness. Colorado is an incredible place – but you have to get outside to see it!
October 2019 marks the one year anniversary that my pedicab made its debut at Brookdale North Boulder. The idea came from a medical student in Amsterdam who was giving pedicab rides to seniors, and I thought it would be wonderful if I could do the same. It just so happened that I had a real estate client whose son built pedicabs in Broomfield. I contacted Steve Meyers at Main Street Pedicabs to discuss building a pedicab specifically for Brookdale North Boulder, an independent living community for seniors. The design included gold and black colors to support the CU Buffs as well as a sound system and a cover to protect riders from the elements.
In the first year since its inception, the pedicab has traveled over 700 miles – mostly at about six miles per hour – with smiling Brookdale North Boulder seniors in tow. Some of the first riders commented they hadn’t been outside in weeks! There is nothing like the feeling of being outside and feeling the wind in your hair. When the pedicab arrived in October last year, the weather was already starting to get chilly, but there were still plenty of residents who wanted to get out on a clear Colorado day, gently warmed by the pedicab blanket. When spring arrived with warmer temperatures, the experience was even more enjoyable.
The location of Brookdale North Boulder allows easy access to the City of Boulder’s bike path system. This enables the pedicab to safely take bike paths and rarely a busy street competing with traffic. Once out on the bike paths, the scenery and other amenities Boulder has to offer are lovely. One of my favorite stops on the bike path is The Road House Depot. In the summer, it has a beautiful patio with a great view of the Flatirons and easy pedicab parking.
The response when I’m biking has been tremendous. When passerbys see smiling seniors taking rides, they just melt. The pedicab has also been an outstanding ambassador for Brookdale North Boulder. On the back of the pedicab, Brookdale North Boulder has placed an ad, making it clear that the pedicab is connected with their community. Because of that ad, many people have inquired about the institution, which has made this unique activity available to their residents.
In an effort to get the pedicab out more often, I have recruited a few more pedicab pilots who are willing to volunteer their time. It sounds simple, but due to insurance reasons, all volunteer pilots need to be contracted and complete a training program. This ensures that the residents will enjoy the pedicab in a safe manner. With the addition of more pilots, residents will enjoy more availability of pedicab rides.
As cooler weather sets in, pedicab rides won’t be quite as attractive. Yet nothing is more invigorating than getting out on a crisp, clear Colorado blue-sky day, surrounded by snow on a City of Boulder- plowed bike path. Here’s to many happy miles ahead!
By Duane Duggan. Duane has been a Realtor for RE/MAX of Boulder in Colorado since 1982 and has facilitated over 2,500 transactions over his career, the vast majority from repeat and referred clients. He has been awarded two of the highest honors bestowed by RE/MAX International: The Lifetime Achievement Award and the Circle of Legends Award.Living the life of a Realtor and being immersed in real estate led to the inception of his book, Realtor for Life. For questions, e-mail DuaneDuggan@boulderco.com,
call 303.441.5611 or visit boulderco.com.