Bike time at James Elem.

By LESLIE COLLINS 
Northeast News
May 22, 2013

“I didn’t think it was going to be as fun as it was. I had a lot of fun in this program,” James Elementary fifth grader Alesha Cheffen said.

Cheffen, along with five other James fifth graders, just completed the Earn-A-Bike program sponsored  and created by BikeWalkKC.

For 14 weeks, BikeWalkKC Education and Outreach Manager Maggie Priesmeyer visited James Elementary once a week for an hour before school to teach students about bike maintenance, bike safety and bike advocacy.

“Despite being a neighborhood school, very few kids ride their bikes here,” she said.

According to the BikeWalkKC website, 50 percent of U.S. children biked or walked to school in 1969; now, it’s less than 15 percent.

“I think that we’re raising a generation of students that just aren’t as active,” said James Elementary Principal Dr. Jo Nemeth. “In this age of technology we have to find some balance for our kids to get a healthy body, healthy mind and create an overall healthy individual.”

Biking and walking to school is a simple way to increase a child’s activity levels, Nemeth said.

Some of the students in the Earn-A-Bike program had their bikes stolen and didn’t have the money to replace them or their bikes needed repairs. For others, their current bikes were too small.

During the program’s cycle, students work on donated bicycles from 816 Bicycle Collective.  Priesmeyer notes what repairs each bicycle needs and then teaches the students how to make those repairs. When students complete the program, they receive a bicycle tool kit and they’re allowed to take the bicycle they worked on home.

“It’s an incentive to have the kids be able to look forward to something,” Priesmeyer said. “They can take away the maintenance skills too, so if there ever is a problem, they can’t make an excuse, ‘Oh, my bike is broken.’ They can fix it themselves.”

Learning how to fix her own bike is one of the reasons that Cheffen said she signed up for the program.

Cheffen rattled off a number of things she learned, like how to fix a flat tire, how to fix the chain, how to perform a safety check and use the correct hand signals when turning, among others.

Angela Torres said she learned how bicycles are more economical than cars. Instead of paying for gas or making car payments, you can save money and ride your bike, she said.

Both Torres and Jasmine Garcia said they’re glad they know how to fix their bikes now.

“It makes me happy because now I won’t have to tire my dad because he would always have to fix my bike,” Torres said. “Now that I know how to fix it, it’s fine…

“Now that I have my own bike, I can go ride around with my friends for fun.”

Asked what she enjoyed about the program, Priesmeyer said “I like that it’s an intimate setting with a few kids and it’s so comprehensive. There’s a lot that’s covered. The main thing I like about it is how excited and passionate the kids are by the end and just really seeing the kids stick with it; seeing how much they care about it is really cool.”

James-Bike-group-pic-smiling

 

Bike-Group

 

 

Girl-Biking

 

 

Neighborhood-Biking

 

 

 

 

Comments are closed.

  • John V. Mesh Memorial Scholarship set to honor firefighter through conservation

    June 21st, 2016
    by

    Northeast News Aside from family and the Fire Department, those close to fallen KCFD firefighter John Mesh say that being in the great outdoors was his greatest passion in life.
    That’s


    After long wait, Manchester School is finally coming down

    June 21st, 2016
    by

    Manchester. A bulldozer was parked outside of the Manchester School on the morning of Monday, June 20.


    KC Museum’s opening summer concert to partner amateur musicians with the pros

    June 21st, 2016
    by

    Northeast News Are you excited to start moving to the music this summer?
    Harmony Project KC will be kicking off the Kansas City Museum’s summer concert series along with the Kansas


    NE Library book club discusses one of its own

    June 7th, 2016
    by

    Northeast News KANSAS CITY, Missouri – Inspired by the plays of Anton Chekhov, Northeast resident and author Catherine Browder published a set of novellas in late 2014 that explored some of


    Della Lamb casts wide service net in Kansas City

    June 1st, 2016
    by

    Northeast News KANSAS CITY, Missouri – All the way back in 1897, Della Lamb Community Services began as a Methodist organization offering an after-school child care program to help ease


  • [Advertisement.]
  • Area youth have a P.A.L. this summer

    May 17th, 2016
    by

    Northeast News KANSAS CITY, Missouri – The Kansas City Police Athletic League serves roughly 800 area kids annually, and they’ll be taking 50 more under their wings this summer as


    Frontier STEM High School wows with STEM Expo

    May 13th, 2016
    by

    Northeast News May 13, 2016 KANSAS CITY, Missouri – Frontier STEM High School (6455 E. Commerce Ave.) invited the public […]


    Derby Day at the museum

    May 10th, 2016
    by

    Derby. Attendees celebrated the Kentucky Derby in high fashion on Saturday, May 7, at the Kansas City Museum’s first annual Derby Day party.


    Independence Ave. CID to strengthen park security

    April 26th, 2016
    by

    Northeast News Independence Plaza Park will soon be a lot more family-friendly.
    During the Independence Ave. “Love Your Park” event on Saturday, April 23, Independence Avenue CID president Bobbi Baker-Hughes announced an


    Merger of KC charters denied by DESE

    April 26th, 2016
    by

    By Paul Thompson Northeast News April 26, 2016 Scuola Vita Nuova and Crossroads Academy will not be merging after all. […]


  • Local Weather

  • What’s Happening

    Highlights from the June 23 Candidate Forum at SVN

    By Paul Thompson Northeast News June 24, 2016 KANSAS CITY, Missouri – The Northeast News and its readers learned a […]

    Bikes, Buggies and good times

    Northeast News June 23, 2016 KANSAS CITY, Missouri – Eleos Coffee rolled out their first annual Bikes and Buggies show […]

    Body found near Central Bank Monday identified

    Northeast News June 23, 2016 KANSAS CITY, Missouri – The body of a man found early Monday morning near the […]