No bike? No problem: Kids can check one out from SORA for outdoor adventures

Staff reports
SORA's fleet of loaner bikes are for kids to check out, so they can enjoy all the outdoor activities the Mt. Shasta area has to offer.

It doesn't matter if they have their own equipment or not – Siskiyou Outdoor Recreation Alliance wants to ensure every kid can enjoy all the outdoor activities the Mt. Shasta area has to offer.

SORA has built an Equipment Lending Library system that will make well-maintained outdoor recreational equipment available on a sliding scale or no-cost basis to serve low-income and disproportionately impacted populations. The purpose of the project is to ensure youth and disabled people have equitable access to essential equipment.

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Through support from Mt. Shasta Rotary and Dignity Health Community Grants Program, funding became available to purchase bikes for the Equipment Lending Library, according to a press release from SORA. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, most bike manufacturers and dealers have been sold out of mid-range mountain bikes or are on backorder until late summer 2021. Meanwhile, there has been a waiting list of kids who need bikes now to participate in the 2021 summer/fall Shasta Gravity Adventures’ Gravity Groms program. Fortunately, The Fifth Season in Mount Shasta received an early shipment of inventory and SORA purchased eight new loaner bikes.

Christian and Monique Birch, owners of Shasta Gravity Adventures, are passionate riders who have been leading mountain bike adventures for over 25 years and are eager to welcome kids to their upcoming biking programs in Mount Shasta.

Mt. Shasta area youth Conner with a bike he checked out from SORA's fleet.

“The SORA bike lending library is an important aspect of our youth bike programs because it gives opportunities to kids to be involved that would not necessarily have the resources to participate in a lifelong sport," said Christian. "We see a lot of kids with bikes that cannot be used on mountain bike trails, and when they experience the joy of using a new bike that is trail-ready, they are hooked, excited, and engaged.” 

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“Our goal is to continue to build the fleet of loaner bikes to ensure that every child in Siskiyou County who wants to participate in a biking program has access to a well-maintained, trail-ready bike," said Justi Hansen, SORA's executive director.

To donate or learn more about the program, contact Hansen at justi@siskiyououtdooralliance.org, or calling 530-812-0110. 

Visit https://siskiyououtdooralliance.org/equipment-lending-library to learn about the lending library and visit https://siskiyououtdooralliance.org/bike-donations to learn more about the bike lending library campaign.