Pedal to Porch brings neighbors together through cycling and storytelling

Charlotte will be the first expansion city to host the successful community-building campaign on Oct. 6.

Pedal to Porch, a bike ride where neighborhood residents tell stories from their porch, is coming to Charlotte on Oct. 6. Photo: PedaltoPorch.org.

In 2014, property redevelopment threatened to “rebrand” Cornetta Lane’s northwest Detroit neighborhood, Core City. Inspired to take action, she launched Core City Stories, a biking and walking tour with predetermined stops where residents tell true stories from their front porch. The project took off and Lane was awarded a $30,000 grant from the Knight Foundation to expand to other cities.

Core City Stories became Pedal to Porch, and through a partnership with Charlotte B-cycle, Charlotte will be the first expansion city to host the successful community-building campaign on Oct. 6.

As conversations continue about the impact of Charlotte’s rapid development on historic neighborhoods, Lane recently facilitated a training workshop ahead of the event that will highlight porch stories from the Seversville, Biddleville-Smallwood, McCrorey Heights and Washington Heights neighborhoods.

“Storytelling can be a catalyst to get neighbors to talk to one another and shift the dominant narrative,” Lane said.

Pedal to Porch is coming to Charlotte on Oct. 6


Dianna Ward (l) of Charlotte B-cycle and Cornetta Lane (r) of Pedal to Porch. Photo: Christine Edwards

Charlotte B-cycle Executive Director Dianna Ward said she’s encouraged by the support of the Historic West End and key partners bringing the ride together. B-cycle will provide bikes for all registered participants.

“Biking unites people. And we want to do this in a way that unites the West End,” Ward added.

The event is free and open to the public. Interested bikers can register here. Other neighborhoods looking to organize a Pedal to Porch event can visit pedaltoporch.org for more resources.

Christine is a local government professional with a love for the community. In her spare time, she volunteers, travels, enjoys good southern food and loves seeing urban policy theory play out in everyday life. Public service is her jam.

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