Plant City youth are ready to safely ride their bikes in style thanks to the the Ride the Right Way 2019 Plant City Family YMCA Bike Rodeo last weekend.
The event was held for any child in the community ages 5 to 12 years old. Once they arrived with their bikes in tow the kids got to participate in a hands on bike clinic. They moved from station to station to learn about bike maintenance, rules of the road and proper helmet fit.
Officers from Plant City Police Department were onsite to discuss safety and teach the children how to properly signal they were planning on turning or slowing down.
Plant City Fire Rescue was also at the event, sharing stories with the youth about their job and letting them climb up into the truck for a fun photo-op.
Once the youth had their helmets properly fitted they pedaled over to a bicycle obstacle course, where they tested their signaling and weaving skills and learned how to navigate through the toughest terrain.
Based on the rules of the road, the children were able to complete it knowing how to handle their bikes should they ever take them for a spin on the asphalt.
St. Joseph Children’s Hospital’s Wellness and Safety Center partnered with the YMCA for the event. Using a Safe Routes to School grant from the Florida Department of Transportation, they were able to secure more than 130 helmets and teach safety to the community. Now thanks to the event, the participating children know how to run through a quick A.B.C. checklist to make sure they’re ready to ride and how to properly fit their helmets for optimum protection.
The representatives from St. Joseph’s are certified for fitting the helmets and teach clinics involving bicycle safety throughout the area. This is the second bicycle rodeo for the Plant City Family YMCA, but the first with the partnership from St. Joseph’s.
Four lucky riders even went home with their own bicycle. The new rides were donated by Pepper Berry Farms Inc. via Darryl Williams and Gwen Ford, Bart Borders of Borders Insurance Inc., Sue Mitchell, who is a dedicated friend of the YMCA, and an anonymous supporter provided the last bike.