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“Why I Ride” with Carolyn Wilkins and Mike Farber

Have you heard? Climate Ride Northeast begins Thursday, and all of us at Climate Ride are so excited! Over the next week, we will be highlighting some of our incredible riders who have traveled near and far to ride with us, and have fundraised and trained hard to support the causes they are most passionate about.

We ask every participant when they register, “Why are you participating in Climate Ride?” Is it to pass climate legislation? To protect our natural resources? To help provide safer streets for biking and walking? Or perhaps, to support cleaner, renewable energy? Many participants work and volunteer as scientists, executives and energy sector professionals, nonprofit staffers, students, and climate activists. However, many forget to mention one of their most important daily roles – as mothers, fathers, mentors, or caregivers for children in their lives.

I caught up with Carolyn Wilkins and Mike Farber, a dynamic couple from Concord Massachusetts who will be joining us on their first Climate Ride. Both are upfront and candid that their motivation to participate in Climate Ride is their children, ages 12 and 15. They are also both fundraising for Mothers Out Front – a volunteer-led nonprofit that utilizes a shared value–that we all have children we love in our lives, to build a powerful grassroots movement demanding renewable energy and a healthier climate for future generations. Here’s what Carolyn and Mike had to say:

Why did you choose to participate in Climate Ride this year?

“I’m a triathlete, a cycle instructor and environmental activist, yet while it may seem like it’s a no-brainer, the idea of riding in a 5-day event intimated me. However, between the lack of substantive, rapid climate action by leading nations, the increasing evidence of climate change’s impact, and the coincidental logistics of the Northeast Ride, it seemed the stars were aligned, so I registered!”

Although Carolyn had her eye on Climate Ride for several years now, it wasn’t until this year and this route that she felt compelled to ride. Nineteen years ago, almost to the day, Carolyn and Mike spent their honeymoon in Acadia National Park, where the ride begins. Five days later, they will have the opportunity to wave to their kids as they pedal through their hometown of Concord, Massachusetts before finishing in Boston on September 12, which happens to be Carolyn’s birthday!

Climate Ride Northeast begins in the scenic Acadia National Park, which also happens to be where Carolyn and Mike spent their honeymoon 19 years ago!

What inspires you to ride?

“I’m riding for my children, to show them that it’s possible to stand up for what you believe in and do what you can in the face of something as daunting as climate change,” Carolyn explains.

Mike describes himself as a “bike dork” and adds, “I’m not the kind of guy that sits back and lets stuff happen. I’ve worked with companies using technology to combat climate change, campaigned during the last two presidential elections, and attended big climate rallies. However, it’s time for the next step. I wanted something that combines environmental action, bikes, and my incredible wife.”

Carolyn with her two children who she says inspire her to ride. 


What beneficiary organization are you riding and fundraising for?

“The funds we raise will benefit Mothers Out Front, a volunteer-led organization I’ve been involved with for over two years.” Carolyn explains. “Mothers Out Front is working to mobilize mothers, grandmothers and others to fight for a livable climate for future generations. It is one of the few organizations that fuses parenting and caregiving with climate education and climate action. I believe it has the potential to be one of the greatest movements precisely because it is calling upon our most universal instinct: to create, and actively defend, a healthy future for our children. From living rooms to state houses, coffee meet-ups to public rallies, the group engages people in ways that work for their lives (and that’s key for busy women today!)” 

“Imagine that a momma grizzly bear could understand climate change, and you’re getting close to the organization’s DNA,” Mike said.

Carolyn chimed in, “Its time for Mama Bears everywhere to come out and fight for a livable climate for future generations!”

Learn more about Carolyn’s and Mike’s story and support the cause!