MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Local News

May 8, 2014

Residents learn to be Bike Smart at clinic

A free bike clinic brought two experts to Muskogee to inform people on how to be bike smart.

“That’s what it’s all about, bringing awareness,” said David Rogers, owner of Paceline Cyclery in Tahlequah.

Spring sunshine and warm temperatures will increase the number of cyclists around the community. Almost 30 people attended the clinic at the Muskogee County Health Department.

“I’m just testing the waters,” said Pat Pack. “I’m interested.”

The clinic’s speakers covered topics of safety, maintenance, and how to buy the right bike.

Doug Walton, coordinator for the Muskogee Food and Fitness Initiative, said he thinks the community needs bike awareness.

“I think there is a growing interest in Muskogee,” Walton said. “Part of my job is to get more people eating better and moving more. Bicycling is a great way to do that.”

The ages of those attending the clinic ranged from children to senior adults. Rogers and Devon Whaling, a technician at Paceline Cyclery, answered many questions from the audience about biking.

“The most important thing we can stress it to wear helmets,” Whaling said.

Next week is Biking to Work Week, and National Bike to Work Day is May 16. A biking to work manual was handed to all attendees of the clinic as well as bike helmets.

The city received a grant from the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust because it is a certified healthy community. Walton said some of the grant money was used to purchase the helmets.

The idea of having a clinic has been in the works for some time, Walton said.

“Part of it grew out of the AIM effort infrastructure committee, improving bike safety and awareness,” Walton said, referring to the Action In Muskogee initiative.

Bringing two experts from Paceline Cyclery is something that Walton said would be beneficial to the whole community.

“Not having a bike shop in town, a lot of people don’t have the benefit to speak with experts,” Walton said.   

While Muskogee does not have a bike shop it does offer many options for bike trails.

“We have about 12 miles, give or take, of trails in within the community,” Walton said.

A group bicycle ride will take place at 6 p.m. Monday at Love-Hatbox Sports Complex. Those interested should meet at the Centennial Trailhead.

“It takes a little over an hour at a casual pace,” Walton said.

Reach E.I. Hillin at (918) 684-2926 or ehillin@muskogeephoenix.com.

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