Photos from the 20th annual Holiday Bike Drive
By Melinda Musser, Communications & Marketing Manager
On Sunday, 300 children rode home with new bicycles, helmets, and the newfound knowledge on how to ride safely in their neighborhoods at the 20th annual Holiday Bike Drive.
This event has come a long way since its inception in 1995 when our founder, Brian Lacy, used to gather volunteers, load up his pickup truck full of bikes, and deliver them to neighborhood kids. Over the years, the event expanded to include a bike safety educational component for children and their families, and grew in size to fill the atrium of Legacy Emanuel Medical Center. But the Holiday Bike Drive is about so much more than just bicycles.
“Being a struggling family in today’s economy, any help you can get for your kids is welcomed,” explained Shane after his son, Mikey, earned a bike. “This creates a stimulus to do something positive with the family. It’s so hard to do things with kids. Everything costs money. Now we can all ride together, [which means] more fun times for our family while we’re going through hard times.”
The goal for the Holiday Bike Drive is to make sure more children have access to the freedom, joy, and health benefits that bicycles can bring. On Sunday, over 260 volunteers helped make this dream a reality.
Inna Levin, a Volunteer and Outreach Coordinator for Oregon Walks, volunteered her time as a Bike Buddy at the Holiday Bike Drive. “My most memorable moment was my interactions with the second child I met at the event. He was super excited because even though he knew how to ride a bike after borrowing his friends’ bikes in the past, this was the very first bike that he has owned.”
Inna further explains, “I think it’s important because not only do kids get a bike, they also receive the safety training and instruction that generally gets missed. Community Cycling Center ensures that each kid gets a properly fitted bike and helmet, so they’re set up to be a really safe bike user. I think that’s really important for not only the kids who participate in Holiday Bike Drive but for our community as a whole.”
Take a look at some of Portland’s newest riders:
Thank you to Lam Research Foundation, Trauma Nurses Talk Tough, Legacy Emanuel Medical Center, Metro Regional Travel Options, and Northwest Health Foundation for generously sponsoring the Holiday Bike Drive.
Thank you to our amazing food sponsors who kept our volunteers fueled and ready: Russell Street Barbeque, New Seasons Market, Nossa Familia Coffee, Kenny & Zukes, Salt & Straw, Sunset Bagels, Great Harvest Bread, St Honore Bakery, Dave’s Killer Bread, and Asean/Stalkmarket.
Special thanks to our volunteers who lovingly refurbished the bikes over the course of the year and volunteered their time on the day of the event. And thank you to everyone who has sponsored a child’s first bike. We simply could not do this without your support and we are incredibly thankful.
If you would like to make a donation to support our work or learn more about year-round volunteer opportunities, please check out the following links:.
View our full Holiday Bike Drive photo album here.
Photos by our talented volunteer photographers: Brit Forbes, Charles Edelson, Greg Raisman, Kirk Rea, Jonathan Maus, and Mario Segura.