NRoute hosting Community Transportation Awareness Day Thursday
Published 2:16 pm Tuesday, June 13, 2023
Editor’s Note: Due to inclement weather, the NRoute Community Picnic has been moved to the Ardis T. Williams Sr. Auditorium, 901 Monroe St.
NRoute, Vicksburg’s community transportation service, will celebrate 17 years of operation on Thursday.
In conjunction with this anniversary and National “Dump the Pump” Day, NRoute will join the Mississippi Public Transit Association and the American Public Transportation Association in offering free bus rides all day.
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Executive Director of the NRoute Transit Commission Evelyn Bumpers, who also serves as president of the Mississippi Public Transit Association, said she hopes the event will encourage more people to use community transportation.
“What we’re doing is trying to get people interested in riding and getting acclimated to riding the transportation system, knowing that there are other options (besides transportation by personal vehicle) and just trying to take the stigma away from it that it is just for the elderly and the indigent,” Bumpers said. “‘Dump the Pump’ means that you don’t have to put any gas in your car that day — hang up your keys and ride.”
Bumpers also said she encourages residents to ride a full bus route, which covers approximately 10 square miles and takes approximately an hour to traverse.
There are three NRoute bus routes offered, according to the city’s website. For a full list of routes, visit vicksburg.org/publictransportation.
“(On Thursday), you can expect an experience on community transportation that you’ve never had,” Bumpers said. “You’ll get a chance to see different areas in the city that you probably would not have seen because of the fact that you don’t venture into those areas. And then you get a chance to meet a lot of interesting people and have a lot of interesting conversations.”
Bumpers added that she is excited to showcase what NRoute has offered the community for the last 17 years — as it’s a program she’s worked to build since its inception.
The community is in for a real treat, she said, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday, as NRoute will host a free community picnic at the Ardis T. Williams Sr. Auditorium, 901 Monroe St.
“We want to let the customers know that we appreciate them,” Bumpers said. “We’re gonna do some ribs, we’re gonna do some chicken, hot dogs and hamburgers, baked beans, potato salad. And we’ll just have it set up picnic-style where people can come and mingle and get to know each other.”
The organization will also host a special presentation for NRoute’s very first bus riders.
For those who want to use community transportation on a regular basis, NRoute offers several bus pass options. Frequent riders, Bumpers said, prefer the monthly bus pass at $35.
“You can’t fill up your car for that,” she said.