St. George Bicycle Collective secures funding for after-school bike workshop

In this file photo, a volunteer works at the St. George Bicycle Collective grand opening, St. George, Utah, Oct. 28, 2017 | Photo by Sheldon Demke, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — In hopes of keeping young people active, healthy and engaged, the Healthy Dixie Council and Southern Utah Bicycle Alliance have awarded grants to the St. George Bicycle Collective.

Kids learn how to repair bikes at the St. George Bicycle Collective, St. George, Utah, date not specified | Photo courtesy of the St. George Bicycle Collective, St. George News

The collective will use the donated funds to help implement an after-school bike workshop program designed to encourage active lifestyles and teach children how to maintain their bikes. Kids will receive a free bike if they cannot afford one after completing the workshop.

The nonprofit collective, which works to provide affordable, refurbished bicycles to kids and low-income households through community donations, opened its new location on St. George Boulevard in October.

Read more: Affordable bikes available to all at newly opened Bicycle Collective

“We want to spread the skill of understanding bike mechanics and the fun of biking in a more sustainable way than simply giving away free bikes,” St. George Bicycle Collective Director Judith Rognli said in a news release. “Our goal is to obtain enough funds to hire a mechanic for three months to teach the workshops along with volunteers.”

Grants in the amounts of up to $4,000 from the Healthy Dixie Council and $1,500 from the Southern Utah Bicycle Alliance will help kickoff the workshop.

“The overall goal of Healthy Dixie Council is to get young kids physically active so it becomes a lifelong habit,” Healthy Dixie Council Chair Kye Nordfelt said in the news release. “Biking or walking to school is something Healthy Dixie Council has encouraged through safe routes to school initiatives, bike rodeos to teach bike safety and other initiatives with the Washington County School District.”

Volunteers at the St. George Bicycle Collective, St. George, Utah, date not specified | Photo courtesy of the St. George Bicycle Collective, St. George News

The after-school bike workshop program also jibes well with the goals of the Southern Utah Bicycle Alliance, which works to improve cycling in Southern Utah by promoting policy and infrastructure initiatives to make bicycling safe, convenient and inviting for residents and visitors.

“We are excited to be part of the initiatives of the Bicycle Collective to involve young children in the fun and benefits of biking,” alliance board member Craig Shanklin said in the news release. “We believe that the earlier children begin the habits of an active lifestyle, they are more likely to keep those habits for life.”

The collective offers its repair services and products to people of all ages, not just kids. The store works on a mostly volunteer staff and community donations of bikes and equipment.

The St. George store is stocked with affordably priced commuter bikes, road bikes, vintage bikes, mountain bikes and kids’ bikes, in addition to a variety of cycling gear.

Those interested in learning more about the collective or browsing its selection can visit the store at 70 W. St. George Blvd.

Email: jwitham@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2018, all rights reserved.

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3 Comments

  • Caveat_Emptor January 30, 2018 at 3:57 pm

    Worthy objectives, taking advantage of a huge inventory of gently used bikes either abandoned, or sitting unused in the garage.
    A great way to get kids off of their smartphones, and learn some basic mechanical skills.

  • comments January 30, 2018 at 8:06 pm

    Imagine all the 1000s of bikes that could’ve been bought for what the city dumped into that stupid bike rental thing….

    so what sort of age group of kids would this be aimed at? From my experience most little kids don’t have the attention spans to even do simple work on a bike. They’d rather just ride them. And w/ bikes being so cheap, if something actually goes wrong they’ll just junk them and get a new cheap walmart bike. What I’m saying is it’s a good idea in theory but would kids be at all interested? And hiring a mechanic? Working on a bike isn’t rocket science. What are they gonna be rebuilding forks on $9000 mountain bikes? I think not. Stick w/ volunteers. If a bike is so wrecked it needs a “pro mechanic” it prob isn’t worth the effort to restore, unless ofc — $9000 mountain bike 😉

  • comments January 30, 2018 at 8:08 pm

    anyways, if the other volunteer stuff i got lined up falls thru or i hate it, this might be a fun thing…. who knows 😉

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