Kids enjoying doing some "real" mountain biking.

Take A Kid Mountain Biking Day 2012

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Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day turned out to be as much fun as we could hope. The threat of rain worried us and we made it most of the way through the event before a downpour cut it just a bit short. The event has been supported for the past 8 years by the International Mountain Biking Association internationally. Locally, several incredible people and companies helped us put together a great day for kids and parents.

This one spent a little time on the easy obstacle course but soon moved up to the harder one.
This one spent a little time on the easy obstacle course but soon moved up to the harder one.
Negotiating the beginner obstacle course on a pretty pink Strider balance bike.
Negotiating the beginner obstacle course on a pretty pink Strider balance bike.

We had around 20 kids and their parents stop by to play. Willa Williams (North Little Rock Safe Routes to School Coordinator) brought several Strider balance bikes for kids (we found that “for kids” is really more of a guideline than a rule) to try out plus we had a couple of children’s bikes from Recycle Bikes for Kids to loan out. Willa also was able to give away some bike helmets with free fittings.

Bernadette and Willa from North Little Rock Fit2Live demonstrating how to use a balance bike.
Bernadette and Willa from North Little Rock Fit2Live demonstrating how to use a balance bike.

Kids had a choice of two obstacle courses, an easy one for the newer riders plus a tougher course for them move up to. The obstacles included going over logs, skinnies, teeter-totters and a limbo. The latter was probably the most popular as the kids tried over and over again to see how low they could go.

Clearing a log obstacle.
Clearing a log obstacle.
Good technique for sliding under the bar.
Good technique for sliding under the bar.

Representatives from Central Arkansas Velo, Spokes Bike Shop and Community Bicyclist led kids and parents out on the Pfeifer Loop to get a taste of mountain biking. Chainwheel Bike Shop and Spokes both had water bottles to give away to the kids and also to do quick, on the spot bike checkups along with a few minor repairs.

Kids enjoying doing some "real" mountain biking.
Kids enjoying doing some “real” mountain biking.
A group forms up for one of the mountain bike rides.
A group forms up for one of the mountain bike rides.

Some local cycling friends showed up with tall bikes and unicycles just to add some variety to the day.

Making a skinny look easy on a unicycle.
Making a skinny look easy on a unicycle.
Of course someone had to attempt to limbo on a tall bike. She almost made it.
Of course someone had to attempt to limbo on a tall bike. She almost made it.

The unexpected outcome of the whole event was how much fun the adults seemed to have. Many, including Arkansas Outside contributors Lisa and Cliff had to try pretty much every kind of bike that showed up.

Sometimes dad just needs to demonstrate proper mountain biking technique.
Sometimes dad just needs to demonstrate proper mountain biking technique.
Cliff Li working the skinny.
Cliff Li working the skinny.
Lisa Mullis, "Look Ma', no feet!"
Lisa Mullis, “Look Ma’, no feet!”

The event was planned for 9 am to noon but we had to cut it off at 11 am due to a huge storm that swept through the area. We hope to bring the event back again next year. The official day is always the first Saturday in October so you can put that on your calendar. We also hope to have a similar event in the spring, we will let you know when that one comes around. Remember, any day can be take a kid mountain biking day.

Special Thanks for making this a really fun event:

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Your's truly had a little fun.
Yours truly had a little fun.

(Lots of photos on our Facebook Page)

(Thanks Cliff for sharing your photos)

 

 

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6 Responses

  1. Awesome photos and writeup! Could IMBA use a photo or two and the description of the event in our next Youth IMBA Trail News magazine? We’re hoping to feature a handful of events from across the country. Thanks! – Katherine, IMBA Communications Specialist

    1. No problem Katherine, let us know if you have questions that aren’t answered in the article. We plan to make this an annual event and may even start a Spring version. In the meantime we will be taking some of the obstacles to area mtb and cx races so kids can play. We ride all year in these parts.

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