Bike Festival Prevails Through Rain
Jul 13, 2016 08:40AM
● By Tori La Rue
A child rides through the bicycle rodeo obstacle course at Heathy Herriman’s Pedal Palooza. The goal of the event is to teach children about bicycle safety. – Tori La Rue
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By Tori La Rue | firstname.lastname@example.org
Wind and rain, officers from the Unified Police Department, staff and council from Herriman City and community members, joined in Healthy Herriman’s eighth annual Pedal Palooza festivities on May 21.
“When I saw the weather outside, I was worried that no one was going to come out,” Healthy Herriman Chair Kami Greenhagen-Jones said. “This is the first year we ever had rain. We had fewer come than usual, but I was expecting maybe five people to come, and I’d say about 100 kids made it. It was definitely still a success.”
At the event, children participated in helmet and bicycle safety inspections, a bike rodeo, helmet decorating and a bike a scooter raffle. The event usually includes bike races and a bike parade, but these events were cancelled because of the inclement weather.
Healthy Herriman puts on the Palooza each year to educate kids about biking, scootering and pedestrian safety in the spring. This enables them to enter their summer break with a better understanding of what to do when riding a bike and what not to do, Greenhagen-Jones said.
“I think overall we want them to leave here knowing that even though when are on their bike they are usually safe, there are other people out there, too, Unified Police Officer Marcus Beckstead said. “There are safety rules that they need to follow with their bikes, just like an adult needs to with cars. If we do stuff like this to kind of bring bicycle safety to the people, then we might be able to avoid any major disaster.”
Beckstead and other police officers manned the bicycle rodeo and helmet safety inspections. If a child’s helmet didn’t fit right, he or she was given a new helmet, donated by Infinite Cycles bike shop.
When asked if she would wear her new helmet, Ella Thompson, 7, said yes. She said she loved decorating her new helmet with stickers at the decorating station.
“It has a soccer ball because I like soccer,” she said. “And I had to add flowers and a heart because I like those, too.”
While Ella decorated her helmet, other children biked through a bicycle safety rodeo, an obstacle course for kids to ride through. It was set up to resemble bicycle paths that children might come across, such as a railroad crossing, a crosswalk and a stoplight. Police watched as children went through the course and helped them to learn the precautions they should take while riding their bikes.
Lisa Johnson, a Herriman resident, brought her 9-year-old son to the event. Johnson attended the Palooza in years past but said she keeps attending because it is not a one-and-done type of activity.
“The kids get to interact with the officers and learn the correct tings that they should be doing that they have forgotten about all year—like wearing their helmet,” Johnson said. “They need that little reminder every year.”