Wheelie Informative Cycling Safety on June 2

Shawna O'Neill, Special to TC Media
Wheelie Informative Cycling Safety on June 2
Maya Maloney

CORNWALL, Ontario – The fifth annual Bikes and Badges event attracted 114 registered participants on Saturday, June 2.

The event kicked off at 10 a.m. and was shortly followed by a high-energy, Zumba with Christal warm up, which included children, parents and police officers alike.

Cst. Brian Langlois, Cst. Casey MacGregor and Cst. Darrell Blakey of the Cornwall Community Police Service (CCPS) decided to start the event when they recognized a lack of information regarding bike safety in the community.

“We organized the Bikes and Badges event because we noticed there was a shortcoming of training and safety equipment in Cornwall, specifically for younger kids,” said Cst. Langlois. “So we decided, why not try and fundraise, use community sponsors, get the helmets and provide the training? Five years later, here we are.”

Three lucky participants won new bicycles. Two bikes were donated by Canadian Tire and one was donated by the police officers involved in the event. Burn Tucker Lachaine Personal Injury Lawyers donated 70 helmets to participants, and they provided a jelly brain to show children how fragile our brains are, highlighting the importance of helmet usage.

Total Cyclery performed bike inspections to ensure everyone’s bike was adequate for riding. A Crime Prevention Booth with the CCPS was set up to register bicycle serial numbers for locating purposes in the case of loss or theft. BMX Cornwall was also involved, and their new track is set to open on June 11. The Optimist Club of Cornwall provided free food and refreshments.

Several community organizations and businesses sponsored the event.

“Specfically the event is training,” said Cst. Langlois. “So it’s all about the rules of the road for kids. Wearing the equipment, having the bells, the lights. And how to do your proper turns, stop signs, etc.”

The Cornwall Community Police Bike Unit taught children how to properly steer, signal and avoid road hazards.

“I like to be safe and ride my bike, because you can fall down and a helmet is for safety,” said Zackary Maloney, a participant at the event.

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