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Home Park Pride: Norte’s Year at the Grand Traverse Civic Center

Home park pride! Norte is very proud to call the amazing Grand Traverse Civic Center home.

Here are our 2019 highlights:

  • Presented “Parks, Schools, Kids, Bikes and a Transformed Culture of Health” with Kris Erickson at the 2019 mParks Conference in Kalamazoo
  • Provided free access to our community bike shop at the Clubhouse including sharing our tools, supplies, workbenches, and knowledge to park users
  • Hosted twice-weekly free public balance bike meet-ups for preschoolers on the grassy area next to the Clubhouse
  • Organized and put on the inaugural 24 Hours at the Civic Center which raised $1,560.25 for the park
  • Participated in the North Civic Center Master Plan process as a stakeholder and contributed $2,000 to the Pump Track + Traffic Garden design
  • Grew the Grand Traverse Kids Bike Library to 160 bikes at the Wheelhouse which allows awesome kids to come to the Wheelhouse to check out a bike for as long as it fits them. For free!
  • In partnership with Michigan Cares For Tourism, built a 48 piece wooden bicycle playground that is open for public use at both the Clubhouse and Wheelhouse
  • Received a $7,500 grant from People For Bikes for the Civic Center Traffic Garden + Pump Track
  • In partnership with Food Rescue, organized the 2nd Annual Cranksgiving Traverse City at the Wheelhouse, a bicycle-powered community food drive that supported 14 local food pantries
  • Hosted free weekly summer-time neighborhood bike fix meet-ups at the Clubhouse
  • In partnership with the Ironman Foundation, hosted the Great Traverse City Bike Giveaway at the Wheelhouse and gave away 80 bikes to families in need
  • Expanded our “Art in the Park” project by hanging “Miss Piggy”, an oil on canvas piece by Traverse High School students, on the south wall of the Clubhouse in January. We then replaced “Miss Piggy” who was on loan with a replica of Lindy Bishop’s “Our Piece of the Peaceable Kingdom” in May. This joins Chase Hunt’s “Stars” mural on the west side of the Wheelhouse as our two current “Art in the Park” pieces.
  • Supported the City of Traverse City with their conditionally approved $2M Safe Routes To School infrastructure grant which includes improvements near the park including a sidewalk on Civic Center Drive, Front & Fair intersection improvements, sidewalks on Fair Street, improved crosswalk at Garfield & Washington and a new Fair & 8th crosswalk
  • Organized Winter Walk Wednesdays, a weekly celebration of people – young and old – winter walking, and offered free coffee at the Clubhouse to Civic Center path walkers
  • Helped advocate for an in-street stop for pedestrian sign at Garfield & Washington to improve access and connection for pedestrians to the park
  • Provided a pop-up bike rack at Woodland School bus stop at the Civic Center to encourage students to “Bike 2 Bus”
  • Hosted educational field trips at the Wheelhouse for Eastern Elementary and The Children’s House schools
  • Hosted a series of educational bike mechanics classes for the young and young at heart at the Wheelhouse from fall through spring.
  • Participated in the Grand Traverse County’s Earth Day celebration at Howe Arena
  • Organized the Spring Open House for the Civic Center’s partners at the Wheelhouse 
  • Hosted two 4 week learn to ride programs at the Civic Center for students from Oak Park School 
  • Hosted two 4 week learn to ride programs at the Civic Center for students from TBAISD Life Skill Center
  • Hosted free weekly summertime meet-ups for kids with special needs
  • Provided additional bike parking for the Traverse City Roller Derby’s home bouts at Howe Arena
  • In partnership with the Traverse City Track Club, hosted a #OptOutside meet-up at the Civic Center which featured running on the new “shadow trail”
  • Ran the Traverse City Summer Bike Camp from the Wheelhouse which saw 230 kids from the 1st through 8th-grade start and finish in the park
  • The Wheelhouse is the home base for the Grand Traverse Regional Youth Mountain bike team, the largest youth mountain bike team in the state of Michigan

We’re dreaming big in 2020 to stretch our arms wider to empower kids – and those who love them – to be active for life. Join us!

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