Wednesday, May 13, 2015

42 Helmets Checked-–$42 Given

Mountain View Elementary is doing a Bike to School program for May. It's in line with the National Bike to Work/School Campaign. I was asked by my friend Karen to come help fit bike helmets for the kids as they arrive at school on their bikes. Along with Vaughn Nelson and Derik Archibald, we adjusted 42 kid's helmets. We even had some donated helmets to give to those kids who needed a new helmet. We also had an opportunity to educate a few parents on proper helmet fitting. 

This was also the perfect opportunity to give kids a Thanks For Wearing A Helmet $1. I think they got a kick out of it. Derik (owner of Joy Ride Bikes) brought a bunch of fun prizes for the kids. Those will be given away on Mondays by drawing. 

All in all, it was a great success, and it was awesome to see so many kids riding to school! 

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Long Time No Post Doesn't Mean...

I haven't been giving out "Thanks for Wearing a Helmet" dollars. In fact, just a couple of days ago I was cruising along the trail on my way to a meeting, when I happened to see a young boy with his dad. They were stopped on the side of the trail. The boy had a helmet on, so I screeched to a stop and said my, so far, most effective line, "Hey, I have something for the young man!" Dad says, "O...kay".

As I pulled out a dollar with the card attached, I explained to the dad about my Thanks for Wearing a Helmet campaign. Dad gave the dollar to Jasper who put it into his jacket pocket. Dad said thanks (Jasper being the small, silent type, stayed, well...silent). I told them I had a meeting to get to so I'd better be on my way.

A short distance further down the trail, I met three teenagers (2 wearing helmets). Turns out they were previous recipients! Nice to see they are still wearing their helmets (except for the one kid who was still NOT wearing a helmet)!

Now that Spring is upon us, I expect I'll be having more opportunities to thank kids for wearing helmets. I'd better stock up on supplies!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

A Milestone of Sorts

On my way home from a ride downtown, I was on the Woodland Trail when I approached a family of three. The little boy was wailing away--something about not wanting to ride--wanting ice cream. Anyway, the little guy did have a helmet on, so I stopped and gave him a dollar. Well, that stopped the tears right away! Happy to help.

Then, on the Chehalis Western Trail I stopped a teenage kid with his parents and gave him a dollar. Well, that was my last dollar with a card attached. I had run out of the original batch of 30 cards I had made! That means I've given out $30 to 30 kids who have been wearing helmets!

Just a short while later, I came across 5 kids--3 wearing helmets. I didn't have any more dollars with cards, but I did have a few dollars. They were all teenagers and were actually pretty excited to get a buck. One of the kids who wasn't wearing a helmet said his helmet was broken. One of the boys who was wearing a helmet offered to give the kid an extra helmet that he had. I thought that was pretty great!

So, I came home and printed up another batch of cards. I wonder how long it will take me to give out this next bunch...

Friday, September 28, 2012

And I Heard Her Exclaim As I Rode Out Of Sight...

..."Aren't you glad we did a bike ride?"

Yes, another two recipients from the Thanks For Wearing a Helmet Campaign.

I was heading home from downtown on the trail when I spotted a kid coming toward me. I put on the brakes and told him I had something for him. Fortunately, he had stopped to wait for his mom and sister because he acted like he hadn't heard me--the whole "Don't talk to strangers" thing I'm sure. Still, I pulled out a dollar and gave it to him. He politely said, "Thank you Ma'am." About that time mom rolled up and asked what was going on. The kid told her I had given him a dollar for wearing a helmet. Then the sister rolled up and I gave one to her too. The mom said I didn't have to do that, but I told her it was my Thanks For Wearing A Helmet Campaign. She then told me how they had seen a couple of kids get in accidents without helmets, so she always makes her kids wear their helmets. She also thanked me for reinforcing that. The best part of this whole campaign is when I can reinforce what the parent is saying. Protect your head by wearing a helmet. Your brain thanks you and so do I!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

This Mom is Doing it Right!

On my way back from buying bird food at Petsmart, I met Angie and her daughter Amy. Angie had picked up Amy on her bike pulling a trail-a-bike from school. Amy was wearing a nice powder blue helmet. I gave Amy a dollar and card.

Angie has four kids (just like me). She told me when her oldest got caught without his helmet, her and her husband threatened to take him off the football team.

She encourages her kids to ride their bikes to school and is out there riding too (and being a good role model by wearing her own helmet).

It was nice to meet another mom who is doing it right!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

A Surprising Number of Recipients

My friend Carol came to Olympia with her Bike Friday bike so we could go for a ride. We just decided to do the one part of the Chehalis Western Trail that she hasn't done--north from Horizons Elem. to the end at Woodard Bay.

Fortunately, I had my TFWAH dollars in my trunk bag because I ended up giving out 6 dollars and cards!

The first two were at the trailhead at 67th. There were two parents and two kids. One little boy was in a bike seat on the back of the bike. He had his helmet on. The girl didn't have her helmet on. At first I wasn't sure if the girl was with them. When I gave the little boy his dollar, the girl's face just dropped. It was then that Carol noticed she did have a helmet. I said, "Oh, I didn't see your helmet! You get a dollar too!" She brightened up quickly! Whew! I'm glad Carol caught that one!

Further along the trail I saw 4 kids and two adults. Two of the kids had helmets on, two did not. I asked the adults if those were their kids. The two with helmets were theirs. So, I gave the parents 2 dollars and cards to give to their kids.

As we were coming back I stopped for another kid and his mom. At first the mom was going to keep going, but Carol said, "You might as well take it, she's doing this for every kid with a helmet on." So the kid took the dollar.

The last kid was in Horizon Point. As I stopped to pull out a dollar for him, Carol said, "It's your lucky day!"

I was just planning on going for a ride with Carol. In fact, each time we stopped I said to Carol, "Hold on, I have to give this/these kid(s) a dollar." She didn't seem to mind. It was great having someone else with me. I think it is less "threatening" if two ladies stop rather than just me. Maybe I'll have to recruit someone to go with me.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

I'm Baaaccckkk!

I had a fabulous three weeks on the road in mostly Canada with a few days in the San Juan Islands. If you are interested, you can read about that trip at

I saw lots of other cyclists, particularly when I was on bike paths (in Stanley Park and on the Lochside Trail to Victoria). I'd say most of the kids had helmets on. Unfortunately, it would have been difficult to carry a bunch of Loonies (Canadian currency does not utilize a paper $1 bill).

When I got to Anacortes, WA I stayed with a CouchSurf family. They had a delightful 3 year old daughter named Olivia. When we went to the park with Olivia's new scooter, she work her pink Nutcase helmet. I told her parents about my TFWAH campaign. I told them I would send Olivia a dollar with the TFWAH card when I got home. I did, so now, in a very small way, the campaign has reached Anacortes!

Now, of course, school is back in session. Although the opportunities to catch kids wearing helmets is less, you can be sure I will still be out on the trail and road prepared to reward those kids I see wearing helmets.