ST. PARIS – It’s not your usual rodeo that will take place in St. Paris on Monday. The entrants have two wheels.
A Memorial Day Bike Rodeo, sponsored by the Covenant Lutheran Church, will he held from noon to 3 p.m. on Monday, May 31 at Graham Middle School, 9644 U.S. Route 36.
Covenant’s pastor, Rev. Robert Akins, said that riders of all ages are invited. The event will include bicycle safety instruction, bicycle repair, an and obstacle course to test riding skills.
Akins said the church has collected and restored 20 bicycles for exchange or donation to those in need. And as a special bonus, each participant will receive a bicycle helmet, courtesy of Dayton Children’s Hospital and the Ohio Department of Transportation.
Scouts from Troop 258 will provide bottled water and maintain a first aid station. Volunteers from the church, Scouts and the St. Paris community will conduct the testing, skills courses and bicycle repair.
This isn’t the first bike rodeo for Akins, who conducted a similar event two years ago at his previous church in Sidney.
Akins said he will always remember the look on one child’s face after he was told he could keep the bicycle he was given to ride the course. “His father just lost it,” Akins recalled.
Akins said he was surprised by the number of parents who expressed to him their appreciation for having their children’s bicycles adjusted or were grateful to learn about bike repair.
For more information or to donate a bicycle call Covenant Lutheran Church at (937) 663-4695.
Submitted by Joe Curran.