May 2013

Someone once said youth will be served. I guess that’s true. Besides feeding, clothing, and sheltering them we do special things just for them. And some of those special things involve bicycles.

Last month I wrote about the Earn-a-Bike program that has been started here in Ferguson. Earn-a-Bike is an innovative program that teaches problem solving, teamwork, and responsibility to young people as they are learning about bicycle safety and maintenance.

So far nine young people have completed the course and earned bikes. The current class has 12 young people diligently working towards earning their bikes.

Here are three ways you can learn more about the Earn-a-Bike program:

  • Go to the Ferguson Youth Initiative website ( to learn about current and future classes or to sign up. The Ferguson Youth Initiative is sponsoring the program here in Ferguson.
  • Go to the St. Louis Bicycle Works website ( to learn how the program is structured and taught. St. Louis Bicycle Works is providing an instructor for the classes plus the bikes that the young people earn for completing the course.
  • Come to Sunday Parkways on June 2 to meet some of the young people who have earned bikes and let them tell you about the program. The instructor from St. Louis Bicycle Works will also be there with additional info about the program. See more about Sunday Parkways below… 

Well, that’s one special thing done for young people. Another one is just around the corner. The Ferguson Youth Bike Club is gearing up for another great year of fun and fitness with some great rides scheduled! These rides combine exercise, family time, and enjoyment of area attraction and events.

All rides are free of cost, and registration is required.   A parent or guardian must attend the training and ride with youth.  Participants must be able to ride a bicycle without training wheels.  All rides begin at 9am at the Ferguson Farmers Market (20 South Florissant Road) with bicycle safety training and shopping for healthy snacks.  The Ferguson Youth Bike Club is sponsored in part by Great Rivers Greenway.  The goals of Great Rivers Greenway are to connect communities and neighborhoods, preserve and connect people to nature, improve economic vitality, provide transportation choices and promote good health.

Saturday, June 8

  • Travel to the Riverfront Trail aboard the Jolley Trolley
  • Ride 4 miles on the Riverfront Trail
  • Participate in Get Outdoors Day at the Gateway Arch (free youth activities include rock climbing, fitness classes, gardening, crafts, geocaching and bicycle safety)

Saturday, June 15

  • Ride 5 miles on the Ted Jones Trail and play recreational games at UMSL

Saturday, July 6

  • Travel to the Columbia Bottom Conservation Area aboard the Jolley Trolley
  • Ride 3 miles on the Columbia Bottom Trail
  • Visit the Columbia Bottom Interpretive Center

Saturday, July 13

  • Ride 9 miles on the Ted Jones Trail and St. Vincent Greenway and swim at the St. Vincent Water Park

Ride space is limited, so be sure to sign up by emailing or calling Elizabeth Simons at (314) 521-4661 x4070!

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Cycling Savvy classes continue to be held around the St. Louis area. Cycling Savvy consists of three courses that teach a person how to handle their bike and ride safely on streets and with traffic. Classes were held in Ferguson April 16 and 20. And another class is coming up on June 6 and 8.

More info about Cycling Savvy and upcoming classes in the metro area can be found at

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And don’t forget to help us celebrate 5 years of Sunday Parkways by coming out and playing!

Sunday, June 2, 1pm-4pm: Sunday Parkways. The first one of the year will be held along Ferguson Ave. from Forestwood Park to Centre Ave. Special activities at this Sunday Parkways include: helmet decorating, bicycle generators, Earn-a-Bike info, Frisbee games, rock climbing wall, and erecting a “June Pole”. 

Come out and play!