by Dan McClelland
The paved entrance way and the grounds of the Emergency Service Building will be the scene of another big bike rodeo this Saturday, June 10 from 10a.m. to 2 p.m. Every kid in town with a bicycle should plan to be there to compete in various fun activities and games, to learn the latest in the rules of the road and to enjoy a host of tasty treats donated by local businesses.
The rodeo was created by Officer Mike Vaillancourt, the village police department's bike officer, over a half dozen years ago, as a way to keep young riders safe and to help them understand traffic rules.
This year the event's primary sponsors are again the Tupper Lake Village Police Department and the Tupper Lake Kiwanis Club.
One of the event's trademarks is the distribution of bicyclehelmets to any child who attends and who needs one. More bicycle helmets will be given away this year, adding to the hundreds and hundreds that have beengiven out to young bike riders here over the past eight years.
Other important sponsors who each donate hundreds of dollars to the event each year to insure that everyone has a great time are Woodmen Life, Stewart's Shops, the Village of Tupper Lake and High Peaks Cyclery, which will be on hand to do bike diagnostics.
“Flutterbug the Clown” is returning this year to decorate the faces of willing youngsters. Woodmen Life will have its “bounce house” back in service so kids can jump to their fill.
There will be a bike rodeo both in the parking lot and on the grounds between the new ESB and the arena. Last year's off-road course, that was built with the assistance of the village department of public works crew, was phenomenal. This year young riders can expect many new surprises and ways to test their riding prowess.
There'll be lots to eat and drink- all free of charge- thanks to the generosity of the sponsors and many other local businesses. Sweet-lovers will find plenty of cotton candy and snow cones and there'll again be an opportunity to build your own sundaes.
Every child who enters the event will have his or her name entered into a drawing for a free bicycle.
Many police officers and Kiwanis volunteers will be directing many of the rodeo events and the courses which comprise them.
On tap too are demonstrations by the Franklin County Traffic Safety Board which will bring its driving while intoxicated simulator, which points up to participants in vivid detail just how abilities are impaired when driving under the influence of alcohol.
Also on hand from the county seat in Malone will be the Franklin County Sheriff's Department deputies who will operate their child safety program.
by Dan McClelland