The Win-Win-Win Journey Of Magary Aime
A perk of working for Parks’ Sustainability Office is learning about the ingenious ways staff are supporting sustainability. At last month’s “Season’s Greenings” event held at the Olmsted Center, the Sustainability Team had the pleasure of meeting Magary Aime, 27-year Parks veteran and new cycling-devotee.
Last year, Magary participated in Climate Ride California, a five-day, 320-mile charity ride from Eureka to San Francisco to support sustainable solutions, bike advocacy and environmental causes. Magary had such a great experience that he’ll be making another epic ride this May—from NYC to DC—and he’s hoping to recruit fellow-Parkies to join him!
We caught up again with Magary to learn more about last year’s triumphant journey, and what he (and potential teammates) can expect from this year’s ride.
Q: Three-hundred and twenty miles is no small feat, what motivated you to participate in last year’s Climate Ride California?
I saw it as a win-win-win life experience. I got to exercise, sight-see, and support environmental causes all at once. I had clipped the ad out of a magazine and showed it to my girlfriend (she’s a physical education teacher). She said “Let’s do it!” We decided to ride together, so she helped motivate me too.
Q: For how long have you been cycling?
I’ve been riding for three years, mostly for leisure. I’ll ride from Valley Stream to Olmsted, to the Rockaways, to Riis Beach. My girlfriend inspired me to take biking to the next level, so I got a race bike two years ago.
Q: What were some of the challenges you faced during Climate Ride California? The ride was not easy. Cycling up the hills of Northern California is not easy. There were many times when I asked myself “Why did I do this?”, but by day three I felt so strong, and stopped questioning myself. It’s a great thing to do. Challenging yourself is great. And so is supporting a cause you’re passionate about. I’m passionate about sustaining the planet.
Q: Can you explain how the Climate Rides benefit the planet?
Climate Rides raise funds for organizations that focus on clean energy, sustainability, climate education and bicycle advocacy. The Rides help raise awareness of these initiatives, and brings together like-minded people to build a network of supporters.
Also, the Climate Ride organization offsets all carbon emissions associated with its operations, and all staff and rider travel to and from their events. Plus they use hybrids and biodiesel support vehicles—just like at Parks!
Q: And so this year, you’d like to build a team to ride with from NYC to DC. What should potential Climate Riders know?
Firstly, this will be great fun. The ride (I’d like to emphasize that it’s not a race, it’s a tour) goes from NYC to DC between May 19-23. I’m looking for as many Park teammates as I can get—the more the merrier—and all levels of bike enthusiasts are welcome to join me. It’d be great to form a team by February. We can train together or apart. I’d recommend taking a spin class twice weekly and joining an organization that trains on the weekends (such as the Five Borough Bike Club). The route is planned for Climate Riders, so once training is over, the fun really begins on the Ride.
Q: Besides the commitment to train, how much money are participants required to raise?
Climate Riders register for $75 and need to raise $2400 to go toward the above-mentioned climate-minded organizations. Last year it was relatively easy to raise the money because I got a lot of support from co-workers here at Parks. My colleagues were very supportive. In total, my girlfriend and I raised $6,700 to support several environmental organizations. It was such a great experience.
QUOTATION FOR THE DAY
“Without music to decorate it, time is just a bunch of boring production deadlines or dates by which bills must be paid.”
(1940 – 1993)