Free bike helmets for children and adults
By Barb Pert Templeton
A Bike Safety Day is set for this Saturday, May 21 from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the parking lot adjacent to the Clay Township Park and Clay Township Police Department.
Clay Recreation Director Cindy Babisz said the event is a bi-annual activity and sponsors make things possible by donating the funds to purchase the bike helmets from Safe Kids Worldwide. This year’s sponsors include Deerbrook Builders, Timberwood Builders, and Don and Sons, LLC.
The event will include showing a short safety video and then a local police officer will talk with the crowd and answer any questions.
Advertisements - Click the Speaker Icon for Audio
Next, in a program hosted by Al Lauland, a certified bike instructor, visitors can take a turn on an obstacle course, have a safety check completed on their bicycles, and then be fitted for a helmet.
The obstacle course will have figure 8’s, stop signs, and rock dodgers in place.
Babisz said there is actually a specific technique for fitting someone with a new helmet. There are checkpoints to complete including securing the strap in place and even making sure the angle of the rider’s head is correct for the helmet selected. The event will have helmets of all sizes to fit both adults and children.
“We kind of say, if it fits your head, you get it,” laughed Babisz.
In addition to tips and activities, all riders will be given lights and reflectors, for riding or walking, that were donated by SEMCOG and The League of Michigan Bicyclists. There will also be bike safety pamphlets to take home.
Seniors attend the event too and they can also pick up a new helmet.
“A lot of seniors have riding scooters now and they bike too so they are absolutely welcome to come,” Babisz said.
Babisz said they never really completely run out of helmets and if there are extras, she’ll sometimes pass them out at the music in the park series.
“The goal is to give away all the helmets, we have 200 at each location, and of course, our goal is to have everyone wear a helmet while riding,” she said.
Many of the roads in both Clay and Algonac aren’t the best for walking or bike safety simply because they are main roads like M-29, Pointe Tremble, and Marsh Road, so the more helmets out there the better, Babisz said.
“This is all about education, sharing safety tips and we’ll even have information about the Bridge to Bay Trail that runs from Port Huron to Anchor Bay,” Babisz added.
In addition to police officers and a bike expert, Boy Scout Troop 252 from Clay Township will help at the event too. Babisz said they will provide assistance at the obstacle course and the older scouts might be helping fit helmets.
Ira Township Recreation Department will also host a Bike Safety Day on Saturday, June 11 from 10:30 to 1 p.m. All the same, activities will be in place.
Clay Township Park is located at 4768 Pointe Tremble Road. For more information, contact Babisz at 810-794-9320 or firstname.lastname@example.org.