James Durand

Every kid deserves a bike!

By James Durand

Is it that time of year again?

With this weather lately it seems like mid summer, but we’re quickly approaching Halloween and then shortly thereafter, Christmas.

I don’t typically like Christmas. I feel it’s too commercial and as much as I love the family time, I get frustrated with my kids wanting more and more.

I’m sure I was the same when I was a kid and I was lucky to never suffer for anything needed.

My family were never wealthy, but my sister and I were looked after.

Throughout my youth I can’t really remember any gifts short of bikes. There were a couple of Christmases where I got a new bike and I remember every detail of those days … and most of the following year filled with great riding adventures.

Obviously, these days with inflation, high costs of living, and other global financial hits, it’s tough for many parents to spoil their kids at Christmas, and it saddens me to know that many kids won’t get the opportunity to enjoy that Christmas bike.

Remember the freedom you felt when you could ride to the lake, or across town to your buddy’s house? No need to rely on Mom and Dad anymore, just you on your bike, out and about.

At Swicked we feel that owning a bike as a kid is a right, not a privilege, and, with the community, we try to get a bike under every kid with our “Bikes for Kids” program.

How does it work you ask?

The community – that’s you – donate old bikes, bikes that are worn out, or bikes that are just taking up space in your garage collecting dust. The team at Swicked and my kids, work on all these bikes over the next two months and get them safe, riding well, and looking great before the Angel tree helps us place them under Christmas trees.

We’ve typically placed between 40 and 60 bikes per year and we’ve heard some stories of amazing results over the last 12 years.

I think this year will be bigger than ever and we need your help.

So, if you have a bike that needs some repair, will fit a kid or young teen, and you want to help out, please bring your bike by Swicked Cycles at 1393 Spruce St. during business hours, and we’ll get to work making it beautiful again.

Don’t have a bike, but still want to help out?

We also accept cash donations that go toward buying helmets for the kids as well.

We started “Bikes for Kids” well before we had kids of our own. They have both grown up watching this program evolve and seeing that not everyone gets more and more each Christmas.

This has been a great learning tool for my little family and we’ve all come to appreciate experiences more than things.

It sounds hypocritical to talk about experiences as we’re trying to give bikes to kids, but some of our best family experiences have been on bikes, so please help us give those experiences to as many kids as possible.

I’m James Durand and I’m Goin’ Ridin’…

Campbell RiverCycling

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