GREENVILLE — After seeing a community park in need of help, a local resident is putting together a bike ride to help raise funds for repairs.
During Tuesday night’s Greenville City Council meeting, Greenville resident Lori Hansen presented an idea to the council describing how she plans to help repair Danish Kingdom in Greenville.
Instead of having a big party for her 50th birthday, she decided to make a goal of getting 50 people together to bike 50 miles while raising funds for the park.
The 50-50 Ride, which is planned to take place Sept. 28, will start and end at the Greenville Area Community Center and will provide options for people to bike 10, 20, 30, 40 or 50 miles.
“The idea of a bike ride came about when I saw several different things at the Danish Kingdom that needed repair,” Hansen said. “There are slats missing from the fencing, the painted murals are scratched and have graffiti on them, the soldier needs a fresh coast of paint, some parts of the playground equipment have been removed because they were broken. It was frustrating to see the disrepair.”
One day, Hansen said she spoke with Greenville Area Community Center Director Kris Barry to see how much it cost for upkeep on the park, which ended up being about $1,500 each year.
“Through funding and grants, they are able to raise about $1,000 annually,” Hansen said. “Kris was excited about the idea – fully supported it – and graciously offered to let me use the pavilion for registering riders, etc.”
The cost to participate is $25 per rider with the proceeds going the Greenville Area Community Center.
People who register by Sept. 20 will receive a shirt. People can still register up to the day of the race, but will not receive a shirt.
“I do want to emphasize that I am not a professional cyclist, I’m just someone who enjoys riding,” Hansen said. “I enjoy challenging myself to go a little farther than what I think I can do, I enjoy being outside, I enjoy the great trail we have here in Montcalm County,” Hansen said. “So, I take something I like doing, ask people to join me, and help out the Danish Kingdom – It’s a win/win.”
As of June, Greenville City Manager George Bosanic said to his knowledge, the city hadn’t received complaints about the condition that Danish Kingdom is in.
“From time to time there are those who conduct nefarious activity there,” Bosanic said, noting there is money in the 2013-14 budget to fix up the park, which will be used to make repairs and clean up bad words and pictures.
During Tuesday’s meeting, Greenville Mayor John Hoppough asked to see an overall plan for the bike ride from Hansen.
To for more information on the ride and how to register, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (616) 824-5544.