The Lyme Land Conservation Trust has announced it is teaming up with the charity Bikes for Kids to collect used bikes at its Tour de Lyme fundraiser this year.
Bikes for Kids, a charity that collects, refurbishes and distributes bikes primarily to local families and kids in need, will have volunteers on hand at the Tour de Lyme cycling event on May 18 to collect used bikes.
John Pritchard, president of the Land Trust that organizes Tour de Lyme, made the announcement and said “Bikes for Kids is an outstanding outreach organization. We are proud and excited to partner with Bikes for Kids to help provide bicycles to children in Connecticut.”
Pritchard urged anybody who has a bicycle to donate to Bikes for Kids to bring it on May 18 to Ashlawn Farm on Bill Hill Road in Lyme, which is the headquarters for this year’s Tour de Lyme.
Since its founding in 1989, Bikes for Kids has refurbished and distributed almost 16,000 bikes to families and children, mostly to the inner cities of New Haven, New London, Middletown and Hartford. Bikes for Kids efforts extend beyond Connecticut and include deliveries to Bell Harbor, NY, Haiti and 30 mountain bikes to Tanzania. All bikes are distributed with new cycling helmets.
Dave Fowler, President of Bikes for Kids and a former science teacher in Old Lyme’s Middle School, said, “We put people on wheels who would either be walking or not really going anywhere at all. Last year we delivered 1,368 bikes and hope to deliver more this year.” Fowler said the motivation for starting Bikes for Kids is that “every kid needs a bike”.
The Lyme Land Trust inaugurated Tour de Lyme last year as an annual bike ride to raise funds to support its mission of preserving and protecting environmentally important land in Lyme.~ More than 300 riders participated last year.
The Tour de Lyme is intended for all to enjoy. It is not competitive (there are no “races” or timed finishes), but rather is designed as a way to showcase and celebrate the preservation of Lyme’s spectacular natural beauty. While some of the courses will be challenging, there are others intended for casual cyclists, and there is even a family ride.
Tour de Lyme riders can donate bikes as they arrive. Bike donors not riding in Tour de Lyme can drop bikes off between 2:00 and 4:00 on May 18.
Alternatively bike pick ups can be arranged by calling 860-395-7321.