Spoke Talk: Bike Match is back
Routt County Riders’ Bike Match is back and accepting donations again. But first, a little recap of what we were able to accomplish last season.
Our approximately 15 mechanics volunteered for 110 hours and we paired 58 bikes. We have repaired over 80 bikes in total, including the entire local Boys and Girls Club fleet.
The Embedded Community translated our application 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 the scholarship children to ride with the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club.
And we did it all with minimal budget, no tools and mostly used parts. Above all, we’ve empowered people, expanded the range of what’s possible, and made our cycling community more inclusive.
We originally planned this for this first “Spoke Talk” to provide details on upcoming programs, but first we’d just like to say “thank you”. As we thought about Bike Match in the offseason, it became clear that Bike Match is a product of ‘Teamboat.
Bike Match is grateful to the Craig-Scheckman Family Foundation, whose continued support keeps the program running. We are also grateful for additional grants from the Rotary Clubs of Ski Town and Steamboat, and the Tour of Steamboat, which provided money for tools and parts to start the season.
We also appreciate Mythology Distillery’s generous donation of bike storage and work space this season until construction begins in July. Bike Match does not work without the fantastic support of our sponsors. It also does not work without our donors and volunteers.
Since last spring, the outpouring of support from people in our community has been incredible. We even asked someone to read about Bike Match and then haul their bike from California just to donate. Last season, due to our lack of storage, we could only accept donations, so we had to turn down quite a few bikes.
This year we are able to take bikes for parts in addition to fully functional bikes. If you’d like to donate a bike that needs a bit of TLC, we may be able to recycle it and get some or all of it running again. Send us a photo. Taking more bikes means extra work for our amazing group of volunteers.
In particular, one volunteer, Ty Ryland, nearly doubled the number of bikes repaired by all other volunteers. Thanks Ty! There’s a prepaid Prickly Pedal collaboration brew waiting for you at Mountain Tap.
More generally, a huge thank you to all our volunteers. Grandma said, “Many hands do light work,” and we are grateful for all those hands. So if you can drop out, are ready to learn, or want to donate, we need you.
Our program is growing and so is our need for people who like to get out there and fix bikes. For more information, please message us at [email protected].
Matthew Rochon is the Outreach Program Manager for Routt County Riders.