Celebrating all sorts of safety | AspenTimes.com

Celebrating all sorts of safety

Dear Editor:The Aspen Police Department has been putting on the Bike Safety Rodeo now for at least 35 years. Bike safety is still very big with APD and the Aspen School District. APD and the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office purchased new bikes for those in need of a bike. This year Josh Sarver, Lizzett Arballo, Bryant Perez and Brisa Sandoval all received new bikes. One reconditioned bike went to Spas Angelov. One young man who won a bike donated it back to someone who didn’t have one. That young man is Jordan Ryan. Three cheers for Jordan!This year Aspen Velo, Ute City Bikes, Ajax Bike and Sports and The Hub of Aspen provided a bike for that purpose at a nice discount. A special thanks to Aspen Velo and Ute City Bikes, who helped out even more since Bubba sent Mitchell from his shop to help with safety inspections, and Mike Wampler came himself and was a help.Our local heroes are Jan and Ned Cochran, who come every year and tirelessly fix bikes right up to the end. Virginia Betty, Cindy Morse and Geneva Templeton from the Columbine Landscape and Basalt Bike and Ski Women’s Bike Team came and shared their knowledge of biking. Our final group of volunteers were Mark Alderdice, Lara Whitley, Austin Weiss and the totally awesome Ron Morehead, who knows almost every kid and they all know him.We would like to thank RFTA for sending a bus and driver to talk to the kids about safely riding buses and how to ride a bus when you have your bike. The Aspen Volunteer Fire Department came and taught fire safety, and every kid got to put out a fire with an extinguisher and use a fire house [hose?] to knock down cones. Orrin Moon from the AVFD gets a special thanks since at one point he took a full blast from a canister and almost had to be hosed down himself. Also, Doug Paley, John Zell and Allen Symonds from Mountain Rescue came to teach about wilderness safety and ways to evacuate an injured person from the wilderness. Our local ambulance crew came to give kids a certain comfort level, just in case they ever have to ride in an ambulance some day. We would also like to thank AVH and Sandra Morris, the risk reduction coordinator, for providing helmets for those kids in need of a helmet.Anyone interested in volunteering next year, please contact APD. This is a great community, and we have so many wonderful kids, so please drive slow in town, and watch for the little ones because they may not know all the rules of the road yet.Honorable mention goes to Hunter and Kevin Callahan, two elementary school brothers who care so much about the environment that they ride their bikes to school every day, rain or snow. These guys should be an inspiration to us all.Have a great, safe biking summer!Brad OnsgardAspen Police Department

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