Ferris Donates Abandoned Bicycles to Area Organizations
In the rush to move off campus and away for the summer, students left nearly 70 bicycles on the racks around campus.
Collected throughout the summer by the Ferris Physical Plant, the bikes were stored at the West Commons building until July 23 when they were distributed to area organizations through the Dump and Run program.
“This is the second year we’ve done this with the bikes,” said program coordinator Diane Griffin. Last year bicycles were auctioned off, but donating them seemed to be the best choice this year. The Dump and Run program also collects food items for local organizations when students leave campus in the spring.
The Muskegon River Valley Big Brothers Big Sisters, which is headquartered in Big Rapids, received 24 bikes from the program this year ranging from male and female adult size mountain bikes to BMX bikes that they will distribute to participants in the organization.
The other 40 some bikes were distributed to Mike Wicke who operates a foster care with his wife Kathy in Evart, Mich. Wicke plans to take the bikes back to his home where the kids will perform maintenance and repairs on the bikes before giving them to other organizations and foster care families.
“This is like Christmas for these kids,” said Wicke of the excited teens in his foster care he brought with him to help load the trailer. “They’re really looking forward to taking these bikes apart and getting them ready to give out to people,” he added.
Jesse Spindlow, who is 17 years old and one of the kids under Wicke’s care quickly began to call “dibbs” on the bike he wanted for himself while his twin brothers Amos and Aaron, both 16, followed suit along with 17 year old Kirk McClure who also lives with the Wickes. They were quickly reminded that they would all have to earn the right to a bike with good behavior.
The bicycles won’t be handed out to just kids. Wicke cited an adult who had to sell his vehicle because of the tough economic times and will need one of the bikes to get back and forth to work.
With love and a little elbow grease, the spokes on these bikes will start spinning again soon giving new meaning to the word “re-cycle”.