Bikes For All Northern Michigan
Norte is for happy, healthy, ready to learn kids no matter their ability. We believe in inclusion and that every child should have the opportunity to experience the joy of riding a bicycle.
Bikes For All Northern Michigan (formerly, Amigos) is an educational program that teaches confidence, independence, and bike/pedestrian safety skills. We invite young people with disabilities to join us for some adventure, stretch their legs, and some fun.
The regular program and schedule were interrupted by the 2020 pandemic.
The Bikes For All program started in 2018 with a successful 4-week pilot program at Oak Park elementary. A huge thanks to 4Front Credit Union, Elks Club of Traverse City, and Down Syndrome Association of Northwest Michigan for helping us keep it growing.
Bikes For All in school and at the Wheelhouse
In addition to our other Safe Routes To School programs, The Great Northern Michigan Bike Train Experiment, The Bike Más Project, and Estrellas, Bikes for All MeetUps are another wonderful opportunity to build a healthy, move more culture at school and encourage students to be active, happy, and ready-to-learn.
When we are able to conduct our programs in schools, we use bigger balance bikes and adaptive bikes to teach elementary students coordination and neuromuscular control that is paramount to safe, confident, independent bicycle riding. This fun and stimulating gross motor activity also facilitate academic learning by improving concentration, developing skills of listening and following instructions, as well as fine motor skills like handwriting.
In years other than 2020, classes from TBAISD’s Life Skills Center and TBAISD’s Oak Park Elementary attend 1-2x/week sessions for 4 weeks to learn bike/safety skills both in the spring and fall.
We have also been able to hold some safe, distanced, and masked-up MeetUps at the Wheelhouse in Fall 2020: specifically, the Norte MeetUps for the Deaf Community. We’re looking forward to hosting more MeetUps as it is safe to do so in the future.
When MeetUps start up again, should we bring our own bike?
Yes! Your helmet, too. We’ll have a bunch of bigger balance bikes to try and hope to have some adaptive bikes available to demo as well.
Sounds awesome. Will we need to sign up?
Nope. No charge either. Just come to the Clubhouse or Wheelhouse when we’re hosting a Meetup; we’ll tell you which in the event description. Bring a friend or three too.
Maybe you have a tricycle or other adaptive bike we can borrow or rent? Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org