After years of riding in trike-a-thons, Creek Elementary Principal Rick Hoos revealed his secret to success — short legs.
Hoos joined Muskogee Public School educators with longer legs Monday as they started the Early Childhood Center’s annual trike-a-thon. Over the next week, ECC students will ride tricycles around the school yard to help raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
ECC Principal Malinda Lindsey said the school has raised more than $20,000 for the hospital since 2002. She said her goal this year is to raise $2,000.
Lindsey said ECC students have their parents fill out lists. Each person pledges a certain amount for each lap a student rides on the school’s concrete trail.
ECC secretary Pam King said students usually ride 10 laps through the week.
“If they’re really good at it they ride more, but all the kids do at least 10,” she said.
Monday morning, MPS administrators and ECC staff members applied the pedal power to get things going.
Hoos said he’s been pedaling at the Trike-A-Thon “for as long as they’ve been doing it.”
“It’s always a good chance to see my little preschoolers who are coming over,” he said.
Elementary principals participate in the kick-off as a way to meet some of the kids who could go to their schools after they finish at ECC. The students were encouraged to cheer for the principal of the school they could attend next year.
The adults rode the same red and chrome tricycles the little ones are riding.
“I may be too big for that thing,” Tony Goetz Principal David Shouse said after racing his tricycle against Hoos, Lindsey and two other principals, Suzie Orton of Cherokee and Justin Walker of Harris-Jobe.
ECC staff members also raced the trikes.
Teacher assistant Shanta Mayes won previous ECC staff races. This year, however, teacher assistant Toya Tate crossed the finish line first.
“She did not pedal, she used her feet to move the trike,” Mayes said. “I pedaled the whole way.”
Tate agreed that she did not “win” properly.
“I’m going to explain to my kids that I did not win because I did not do it the right way,” she said.
Tate said the trike-a-thon not only is a good way to raise money for a good cause, it also helps kids learn tricycle and bicycle safety.
“A lot of these kids don’t know how to ride bikes,” Tate said. “This is a good practice for kids who don’t even have trikes.”
Lindsey said kids learn about tricycle safety before they start riding.
Reach Cathy Spaulding at (918) 684-2928 or email@example.com.
You can help
To contribute to the Early Childhood Center’s Trike-A-Thon fund-raiser, call the school at (918) 684-3770.