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Sylvania e-Cycling Drive inspires couple to bike their load

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When Monica Christofili read about the Sylvania e-Cycling Drive on Saturday, May 14 she created a mental list of what she could donate:  An old computer tower, monitor, and printer came to mind. It was how to get the items to the event from Southeast Portland where she lives that would take more coordination.

Monica Christofili and Adam Tardif prepare to pack their biker trailer with old computer equipment in advance of the May 14 e-Cycling drive at Sylvania Campus. The duo will bike their donations to Sylvania from their home in Southeast Portland.

“I try to keep my personal and work commuting-by-car to a necessities-only basis and bike the rest of the time,” said Christofili, a liberal arts and sciences instructor who also serves as the service-learning coordinator for the Southeast Center.

Christofili contacted Diane Shingledecker, computer applications and office systems instructor at Sylvania and the e-Cycling drive organizer, to ask if the $5 per carload drop-off fee could be waived if Christofili and her partner, Adam Tardif, biked across town and brought their donations using a bike trailer.

“As a non-biker, I was surprised when I received Monica’s e-mail – especially at the thought of bicycling from Southeast Portland with a bunch of old computer equipment in a trailer,” Shingledecker said. “At the same time, her e-mail was inspiring. Monica and Adam are great examples of people who take care of our planet – by recycling and by reducing the carbon footprint.”

And yes – Shingledecker happily agreed to waive the drop-off fee.

Christofili estimates she uses her car an average of once a week, mostly when she doesn’t have enough time to make it to meetings, classes, or the occasional doctor’s appointment on time by bike. Her “addiction” to bicycling is an attempt to curb pollution as best she can individually.

“I feel it’s a person’s duty to at least try,” she said.

But Christofili’s real inspiration for riding stems from Tardif.

“Adam rides his bike everywhere and has, for year and years,” Christofili said. “The places and errands people think you can’t go to and run by bike, he does. When I read about the e-Cycling event and the opportunity to safely recycle our outdated computer equipment, I got the idea for making it a weekend ride, and Adam was more than ready. He’s my inspiration for making a lot of these bigger trips, ones I might not be as eager to do on my own.”

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