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Posted: June 11, 2021

Cranbrook students saddle up in record numbers

GoByBike Cranbrook Week found local streets full of young cyclists pedalling their way to school from May 31st to June 3rd. Local students responded to the Cranbrook “Bike to School” Challenges in record numbers for the 2021 competition. Each participating school was asked to tally up the number pupils who rode their bikes to school each day.

The Elementary Schools “Bike to School” Challenge was developed in 2019 by the Rotary Club of Cranbrook Sunrise’s We-Bike Cycling Program to help encourage students to try riding their bikes to school.

A new addition for 2021 was a contest between the High and Middle Schools. Mount Baker Secondary School, Laurie and Parkland Middle Schools all vied for the new Cranbrook “Bike to School” trophy.

The final results are in, and Cranbrook kids rode an amazing total of 2,393 trips to school in the four-day school week. School staff added 192 rides to work.

The competition was close and the 2021 winners have been declared. The first ever champion of the High/Middle Schools Bike to School Challenge is Parkland Middle School followed by Laurie Middle School and Mount Baker High School.

“Parkland Middle School is thankful and grateful to Cranbrook Sunrise Rotary for providing this fun activity for our Students to participate in during this strange year,” said Brenda Tyson, Principal – Parkland Middle School. “Congratulations to our Students for earning the victory and to our Staff for their support. Special shout out to Alissa Amos and her class for organizing the activity for our school. We look forward to defending our championship next year!”

Adding 50 more rides to their 2020 total Kootenay Orchards School retains the title for a third straight year with 417 rides to school for a 1.95 rides/student ratio. ʔaq̓amnik’ School finished second with 1.67 rides/student with Amy Woodland School coming in third place at 1.4 rides/student. Steeples School followed close behind at 1.38 narrowly edging out Kootenay Christian Academy at 1.37 rides/student.

“The passion of our riders was certainly palpable this time around! We are excited to be the recipients of the GoByBike Trophy!” said Judi Poole, Principal – Kootenay Orchards School. ”We would like to extend a huge shout out to our Gr. 5 teacher Mrs. Schadeli . Mrs. Schadeli’s passion and leadership in this challenge helped to encourage our KO community to get out and ride! Thank you to all who participated and enjoyed the riding as well!”

STAFF RIDES – ʔaq̓amnik’ School topped the list for Staff rides at 2.08 rides/staff followed by St Mary’s School at .8 rides/staff.

“The 2021 edition of the Cranbrook Bike to School Challenges brought a positive energy to the community, schools and lots of smiles to the faces of students, teachers and parents.” said Lynnette Wray, President of the Rotary Club of Cranbrook Sunrise. “Our Sunrise Rotary Club was thrilled to have the opportunity to provide this fun activity for local schools. A total of twelve schools participated in the cycling activities this spring.”

Incredible local sponsor support provided some extra inspiration and fun for the students. East Kootenay Community Credit Union sponsored bike bells for students who rode to their elementary schools, and Gerick Sports offered bike bells to the High/Middle School riders. The demand was so great that more bells have been ordered to ensure each participating student receives a bell.

Win a Bike! Two lucky students won bicycles generously donated by Northstar Bicycle Co. (High/Middle Schools) and Gerick Sports (Elementary Schools). Each day a student rode their bike to school they received an entry ballot for the “Win a Bike!” contest.

The draw was made at the Cranbrook Farmers Market on Saturday morning and the winners were:

Elementary Schools – Oasys, Grade 3, T.M. Roberts School High/Middle Schools – Hayden, Grade 7, Laurie Middle School.

The Cranbrook Sunrise Rotary Club wishes to thank the Cranbrook RCMP for their extra presence on the streets surrounding the schools during GoByBike Cranbrook Week. Big thanks also to the sponsors East Kootenay Community Credit Union, Gerick Sports, Northstar Bicycle Co. and 107.5 2day FM for their fantastic support which had a direct impact on the increase in rider numbers this year. Sincere appreciation to the school staffs who happily took on the extra workload to provide this fun opportunity for their young pupils.

Way to go Cranbrook students! Safe travels as you keep on having fun riding to school and please remember to wear your helmet!

Lead image: Kootenay Orchards Bike Racks – Monday, May 31. Photos submitted

GoByBike Cranbrook Organizing Committee

Rotary Club of Cranbrook Sunrise

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