BikeOklahoma, formerly known as Oklahoma Bicycling Coalition (OBC), hosted the first Ok Bike Summit in November 2011. It was a very successful event and led to a separate organization, the Oklahoma Bike Summit, Inc. being formed. The Oklahoma Bike Summit spearheaded bike summits in 2014, 2015, 2017, and 2018. Incorporated in 2013, it became an IRS tax-exempt 501c3 organization in 2014.
Six bicycle summits have been held in Oklahoma each with slightly different themes and participants. With the exception of the 2018 Summit, all Bike Summits were two day events with the first day geared toward community planning, public health, and engineering professionals. The second day, held on Saturdays with bicyclists in mind, concentrated on bicycle advocacy, bike tourism, bicycle law and safety. At several events, participants took a short ride through the host community to better understand safety issues on the road, and how to mitigate them.
In 2011 the first Summit focused on engineering and planning for safer bicycling in communities as well as the economic benefits of bicycling. The 2014 Summit continued on these themes and also included behavioral research into making cycling safer. In 2015 the focus shifted to advocacy in small communities using best practices in achieving goals. The 2017 the Oklahoma Bike Summit focused on attaining physical and mental well-being through bicycling. It addressed bicycling for individuals with disabilities, as a spiritual and emotion healing process, and to improve the health of a whole community.
Unlike the previous four Ok Bike Summits, the 2018 Summit was a one day event that emphasized improving rider skills and working with communities to improve safe riding on the streets.
In January 2019, Bike Oklahoma and Oklahoma Bike Summit created a formal partnership whereas Bike Oklahoma would permanently host all future Summits. Starting with the 2019 Ok Bike Summit, Bike Oklahoma is proud once again to be the official host for Ok Bike Summits.
Bike Oklahoma (OBC) Board and our members have been involved with planning and executing the past Summits, serving on the Ok Bike Summit board, as part of the Summit steering committee, providing presentations, and giving logistical support. Both organizations share a similar mission of education as a way of promoting bicycling in Oklahoma. The partnership between the two organizations met both groups’ goals of making Oklahoma a better state for bicyclists.