Each summer the Landfall Youth Bicycle Program propels participants to learn, get fit and explore the community around them. A well-equipped repair shop allows youth to learn and practice bike repair skills ranging from fixing a flat to building a wheel. Weekly bike rides take cyclists across the thresholds of ice cream shops as well as across state lines. Youth experience riding on the road, on trails and on the track. They earn points riding miles and doing repairs, and can trade those points for a bike or bike parts. These cyclists and mechanics report pride in what they accomplished, becoming stronger and safer cyclists, achieving more than they expected to, and gaining skills they can use later in life.
Thirty-six youth participated in our 2017 season. Cashing in points earned fixing or riding bikes, ten youth earned bicycles. Our mechanics repaired or built up BMX, mountain, road bikes. The Bike Program offered road rides, mountain bike rides, and an opportunity to cycle the National Sports Center’s velodrome. Collectively, youth rode 4394 miles, roughly the distance from Landfall to Paris. We traveled to Dairy Queens, Minneapolis, White Bear Lake, Afton, and into Wisconsin. Our top mileage riders got to experience a 3-day, 100-mile bike camping trip to Taylors Falls and back home again.