Canstar Community News - ONLINE EDITION
Bike Cage continues to role in West End
The Bike Cage just celebrated its third anniversary, putting on a party — with everything from live music to food and minor repair tutorials — on May 26.
Last year’s party was a big success. This year, the Cage added a new twist — it put out a call to the community through the Daniel McIntyre/St. Matthews Community Association’s Front Porch News asking for any input on what the community wants to see this time around.
"After all, part of the philosophy at the cage is that this shop belongs to the community and that community involvement is crucial to our success," said Ian Summerhays, an Orioles Bike Cage volunteer.
The Bike Cage has been in operation since spring 2009, and is located at 444 Burnell St. (near the wading pool area beside the park).
It is a volunteer-run, non-profit, community bike shop and is funded by donations and grants. The cage’s bike parts are donated by community members and bikes are retrieved from the Brady Road Landfill site.
"We’re part of what could be described as a larger community bicycle shop network," Summerhays said. "The network also includes the Bike Garage, Bike Cupboard, Bike Dump, Bike Lab, Sanctoral Cycle, the Bike Hub, and the W.R.E.N.C.H."
Each of these bike shops serve different neighbourhoods, and are organized differently, but share the same goals — providing bikes to community members for little or no cost, by instructing and helping customers to repair and maintain their own bikes. Tools and a safe workspace to repair bikes are provided to bike-savvy customers.
"As we’re [the Bike Cage] located in the West End, most of our customers are from this neighbourhood, but anyone from any part of the city, province, or world is welcome to come by," Summerhays added.
The Bike Cage is open Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Tuesday evenings from 6 to 9 p.m. The cage is closed an hour early for monthly volunteer meetings the first Tuesday of every month.
Cage volunteers are strong advocates for cycling as safely and efficiently as possible, as both a means of transportation and recreation.
The Bike Cage recently kicked off a volunteer drive, encouraging anyone with any interest in volunteering (regardless of their level of experience) to contact them via email, Facebook, or to stop by during shop hours.
For more information, visit bikecage.ca, Facebook, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rebeca Kuropatwa is a West End-based writer.
Neighbourhood Forum is a readers’ column. If you live in The Metro area and would like to contribute to this column, contact email@example.com.
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