Fat bike fundraiser to benefit G2G Trail
BY DENNY SCOTT
The Goderich Bike Shop and Blyth’s DEAMS Holdings have partnered up to raise awareness of a new winter activity and raise funds for the Goderich-to-Guelph (G2G) Rail Trail with fat bikes.
The bikes, which, true to their name, have wide wheels, can tackle whatever winter can deal out, including the heavy snow that Huron County has found itself under recently, Annie Sparling of DEAMS Holdings said.
Sparling and her husband David were looking to add fat bicycles to their Blyth Bike Tours initiative, which was first opened by their son Reece. They reached out to Brendan Sowerby, the owner of the Goderich Bike Shop, to see about ordering some of the unique cycles for the tour company and the family’s AirBnB operation.
Sparling said that phone call was the start of a great relationship and a fundraiser that would generate money for the G2G almost every day.
“Brendan was happy to connect with us,” she said. “He had four adult fat-tire bikes he was renting out.”
However, being a distance from any trails, Sowerby wasn’t seeing the rentals he would’ve liked, Sparling said, so the partnership between him and the Sparlings, who were able to rent the bikes out just 200 metres from the G2G trail, was born.
“He really wanted to support the G2G though, so his idea was to use the rental as a donation to the trail instead of a rental fee,” Sparling said.
Sowerby handles the rentals and the paperwork and Sparling just has to meet the customer and hand over the bikes to be used on the trails.
“Almost every day there is a reservation,” she said of the success of the venture. “The majority are coming from within Huron County.”
She says there are a lot of surprised riders who didn’t realize a bike could tackle snow the way the fat bikes can.
The rental is a free-will offering, Sparling said, because, despite how proficient the cycles can be at tackling the snow, they aren’t for everyone and some people have come back after 20 minutes.
“Others, however, spend two hours riding,” she said, adding the typical donation is about $35 per person.
There are four fat bikes for adults (two size large, one medium and one small) and one youth-sized cycle, though Sparling says the youth-sized cycle is yet to be taken for a spin.
For more information, contact Sowerby at firstname.lastname@example.org.