Spoke Talk: Bike Match is back
Routt County Riders
Routt County Riders’ Bike Match is back and taking donations once again. But first, a quick recap of what we were able to accomplish last season.
Our roughly 15 mechanics volunteered over 110 hours and we matched 58 bikes. We repaired over 80 bikes in total, including the entire fleet for the local Boys and Girls Club.
Integrated Community translated our request forms into Spanish, and we worked with The Cycle Effect to match bikes with underserved LatinX and BIPOC members of our community. We provided bikes for kids on scholarship to ride with the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club.
And we did all this with a minimal budget, no tools and mostly used parts. Most of all, we empowered folks, expanded the range of what’s possible, and made our cycling community more inclusive.
Originally, we planned this for this first “Spoke Talk” to provide detail about upcoming programs, but first we’d like to just say, “thank you.“ As we reflected on Bike Match over the offseason, it became evident that Bike Match is a product of ‘Teamboat.
Bike Match is grateful to the Craig-Scheckman Family Foundation, whose continued support keeps the program up and running. We are also thankful for additional grants from the Ski Town Rotary and Steamboat Rotary Clubs, and the Tour de Steamboat, who provided money for tools and parts to jump-start the season.
We also appreciate Mythology Distillery’s generous donation of bike storage and workspace this season until their construction starts in July. Bike Match doesn’t work without the fantastic support of our sponsors. It also doesn’t work without our donors and volunteers.
Since last spring, the outpouring of support from folks in our community has been amazing. We even had one person read about Bike Match and then transport his bike from California just to donate it. Last season, due to our lack of storage, we could only take donations, so we had to turn away quite a few bikes.
This year, we are able to take bikes for parts in addition to fully operating bicycles. If you want to donate a bike that is in need of a little TLC, we just might be able to re-‘cycle’ it and get part or all of it back into action. Send us a photo. Taking more bikes means additional work for our amazing group of volunteers.
In particular, one volunteer, Ty Ryland, nearly doubled the amount of bikes repaired by all other volunteers. Thank you, Ty! There is a Prickly Pedal collaboration brew already paid for and waiting for you at Mountain Tap.
More generally, a huge thank you to all our volunteers. Grandma said, ”Many hands make light work,” and we’re grateful for all those hands. So, if you can wrench, are willing to learn, or want to donate, we need you.
Our program is growing, as is our need for folks who like to hang out and fix bikes. For more info, please drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Matthew Rochon is the outreach program manager for Routt County Riders.
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