Tulsa Tough Bike Giveaway Coming Up

Tuesday, April 14th 2009, 5:59 pm
By: News On 6

By Rick Wells, The News On 6

TULSA, OK -- A new bike dream is about to come true for 225 Tulsa-area youngsters.  Tulsa Tough gives away bicycles as part of its three-day event coming up at the end of May.  The bikes are ready to be assembled and the kids who'll get them have made a commitment, too.

Tulsa Tough brings bike enthusiasts from all over the country to Tulsa for three days of racing and recreational riding.

"We have a real health and fitness mission to promote healthy lifestyles," said Tulsa Tough Director Malcolm McCollum.

McCollum says a quiet warehouse will give way to an assembly line that would make Henry Ford proud.

"We'll have 50 to 75 volunteer mechanics in here that will be putting together 225 bicycles," said Tulsa Tough Director Malcolm McCollum.  "These are all kids' bikes, 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders."

There are both girls and boys Trek mountain bikes with hand brakes and shifters in three different sizes.

"Third, 4th, and 5th grade age group seemed to be a real good target for us.  They are receptive, eager, they are open to new ideas and learning," said Tulsa Tough Director Malcolm McCollum.

Sometimes it's been difficult to give the bikes away, people seemed to be looking for a catch and there is one, sort of.  Those who get the bikes must commit to a program of personal and bike safety classes and to an eight-mile ride on their new bicycle.  

The bikes come courtesy of event sponsor The Children's Hospital at St. Francis.

There are fewer bikes this year.

"We had to reduce the number of bikes from 300 to 225, simply because of the cost of bicycles," said Tulsa Tough Director Malcolm McCollum.