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Bike Rodeo riders rally despite rain

Jeffery Hovey and Elliott McCormick speed by during Saturday’s bike rodeo at the Saranac Lake Civic Center. (Enterprise photo — Galen Halasz)

SARANAC LAKE — A rainy Saturday morning did not deter the Kiwanis Club from holding its 30th annual bike rodeo at the Saranac Lake Civic Center. Because it was too wet to have the event outside, Kiwanis officials set up a course on the rink inside the building.

Volunteers from the community helped with check-ins and helmet fittings and staffed additional activities, such as coloring and face painting.

According to Keith Freeman of the Kiwanis Club, the police force’s nonprofit arm, the Police Benevolent Society, helps with putting on the bike rodeos as well. In the past, when the event has been outside, they have helped by making a chalk line in the Civic Center parking lot to mark the bike course, which Freeman said was “crucial.”

Before noon, 55 young cyclists had checked in to the rodeo, a number that Freeman said was “a little less than usual” compared to the more than 80 participants they usually have.

He said the rodeo, which lasted from 10 a.m. to noon and was open to kids of all ages, now includes a bike raffle along with giving away fitted helmets.

Reese Wolter takes a break from biking to color a picture at Saturday’s bike rodeo at the Saranac Lake Civic Center. (Enterprise photo — Galen Halasz)

“People give us bikes now, because we put the word out — if you don’t want your kid’s bike anymore, if you want to give it away,” Freeman said. “And then we fix them up, and then we’re raffling them. It’s a free raffle. There’s a basket on each bike and they can figure out which bike fits their kid and then if we pull that number, they can take it home with them.”

In an email after the event, Freeman wrote, “Kiwanis Club of Saranac Lake would like to thank the Saranac Lake Civic Center, the Police Benevolent Society, SL Youth Center, SLICK, SL Key Club and SL Aktion Club who all helped make this a fantastic success.”

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