REI Awards Grant to Fund Youth Bike Clubs Through the Marin County Bicycle Coalition

CORTE MADERA, Calif. - Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI) and the Marin County Bicycle Coalition (MCBC) announced plans today to bring five youth bike clubs to Marin County.

The Marin County Bicycle Coalition's (MCBC) Youth Bike Club program, sponsored by REI, will teach cycling skills and offer chaperoned bicycle outings. The clubs will be organized as after-school activities through local park and recreation departments, as well as through individual schools. A $3,000 REI grant will fund start-up costs for the new program, as well as the development of safety and promotional materials.

Deb Hubsmith, executive director of the MCBC says, "We are very grateful that REI is sponsoring our new youth bike club program. These classes will provide students with the safety skills to ride for transportation and recreation, hopefully laying the groundwork to make cycling a lifelong pursuit."

Doug Schmidt, manager of REI's Corte Madera store says, "REI is pleased to have the opportunity to partner with the Marin County Bicycle Coalition on this innovative new project. These youth bike clubs will get children excited about cycling and enjoying the great outdoors."

The MCBC is currently looking for park and recreation departments, as well as local schools, to host youth bike club activities this fall and during the spring of next year. Those interested should contact Wendi Kallins, Safe Routes to Schools Program Director, at 415-488-4101.

The Marin County Bicycle Coalition is a non-profit organization that promotes safe bicycling for everyday transportation and recreation. The MCBC operates five main programs: Building the Bicycle and Pedestrian Network, Safe Routes to Schools, Share the Road, Public Outreach Project, and Advancing the Bicycle Agenda, with the goal of achieving 20 percent of Marin's transportation trips on foot or by bicycle. Our vision is to create a culture that embraces walking and biking while reducing traffic and improving personal and planetary health. (www.marinbike.org)

REI is an outdoor retail co-op dedicated to inspiring, educating and outfitting its more than 2 million active members and the community for a lifetime of outdoor adventures. Founded in 1938 by a group of Pacific Northwest mountaineers seeking quality equipment, REI operates retail stores nationwide, two online stores - REI.com and REI-OUTLET.com - and an adventure travel company, REI Adventures. REI offers products from all of the top brands for camping, climbing, cycling, hiking, outdoor fitness, paddling, snow sports and travel, including its own line of award-winning gear and apparel. While anyone may join or shop at REI, members pay a one-time $15 fee and receive a share in the company's profits through an annual member refund based on their purchases. As an active supporter of the communities in which it does business, REI is committed to promoting environmental stewardship and increasing access to outdoor recreation through education, volunteerism, gear donations and financial contributions.


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