Ron Vlooswyk will serve in a new role at Swicked Cycles: Community Ambassador. Photo Swicked Cycles Facebook

The new community ambassador

Swicked is turning 10 next month. When we started this little bike shop, one of our big missions was to get heavily involved in the community and enhance cycling for the North Island.

This mission was never intended to be just sponsorship, but instead, get us personally involved at many levels in the cycling community.

We are very proud of what we’ve managed to create in the last 10 years. We have established a strong group ride community with our Monday and Thursday night rides. We have encouraged many youths with our “SwicKids” riding program and “Take a Kid Mountain Biking” events. And since 2010, we have helped get well over 500 bikes to less fortunate families at Christmas with our “Every Kid Deserves a Bike” program.

The list of initiatives we have accomplished is long, but sadly, we still have a longer list of things we never found the time or resources to tackle.

I am sure you all understand having long lists and being short on time. With kids, running a small business day to day, and still trying to find some semblance of a personal life, time is at a premium. No matter how hard we tried, we couldn’t find any more hours in the day and some things slipped down the priority list.

Not ones to give up easily, Chenoa and I put our heads together over our recent winter holiday and decided it was time to change all this. We have now created a community ambassador position at Swicked to help us progress our mission.

Ron, who you may have met on our group rides or in the shop, is taking on this position. He has extensive experience in these areas and is excited to switch gears at Swicked and tackle some big projects within our cycling community.

Ron, the Swicked community ambassador, will now be able to liaise with the local trail advocates and builders. He’ll organize our trail maintenance wants and needs, and develop our trail tool loaner program. Ron will further enhance the Swicked group rides, advocate to get more riders into the sport, and much more as the position evolves.

I am not sure who is more excited, us or Ron, but it will bring some great improvements going forward.

So, if you are a builder, or advocate looking for some support, a newbie looking to get into cycling, or a volunteer looking to get involved, feel free to e-mail Ron at

We are all very excited about this next step and look forward to the many benefits Swicked can bring to the community, in addition to our current programs.

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


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Emaciated grizzly found dead on central B.C. coast as low salmon count sparks concern

Grizzly was found on Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw territory in Smith Inlet, 60K north of Port Hardy

Campbell River RCMP describe violent incident as ‘disturbing event’

Skatepark incident described by RCMP as ‘violence for violence[’s] sake’

North Island area timber supply under review

Review will inform annual cut for the next ten years

Campbell River homelessness groups prepare for winter in a pandemic

Winter presents unique challenges to people experiencing homelessness this year

3 new deaths due to COVID-19 in B.C., 139 new cases

B.C. confirms 40 ‘historic cases,’ as well

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Comox Valley protesters send message over old-growth logging

Event in downtown Courtenay was part of wider event on Friday

Application deadline for fish harvester benefits program extended

Those financially impacted by the pandemic have until Oct. 5 to apply

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

VIDEO: B.C. to launch mouth-rinse COVID-19 test for kids

Test involves swishing and gargling saline in mouth and no deep-nasal swab

Young Canadians have curtailed vaping during pandemic, survey finds

The survey funded by Heart & Stroke also found the decrease in vaping frequency is most notable in British Columbia and Ontario

B.C. teachers file Labour Relations Board application over COVID-19 classroom concerns

The application comes as B.C.’s second week of the new school year comes to a close

Most Read