These nine students got a special treat as part of their graduation ride day on Tuesday: getting to meet and ride with Ethan Stevenson, a BWorks Earn-A-Bike alumnus who was himself a City Garden Montessori School elementary student more than a decade ago. He has fond memories of his own participation in the free program back in the day.
“I remember being so eager to learn about bikes, and BWorks gave me the opportunity to not only learn but give me the confidence to work on my own bike,” he recalls.
Ethan, who is now a college student in Indianapolis, stopped by BWorks’ bike shop some months back and had a chance to reconnect with the BWorks team. When we told him we planned to have yet another group of City Garden Earn-A-Bikers graduating just in time for his winter-break trip home from college, he eagerly agreed to join us as a ride-day volunteer.
And so on December 19, in addition to getting to triumphantly ride their newly refurbished bikes, enjoy hot cocoa and then take home locks, lights and helmets in addition to these cherished machines, City Garden fourth graders got the special surprise of interacting and riding bikes with Ethan. Ethan also got to reconnect with one of his former City Garden teachers who is still teaching at the school — and still remembers him well.
Some of the bike crew made it as far as Tower Grove Park and back, with Ethan helping lead the ride on neighborhood streets.
“I was amazed to see the same eagerness in all nine of those kids — the same as when I was in their shoes,” Ethan says. “I’m glad to see that this program is still around and hopefully it is for many years to come!”
Ethan tells us he still looks back on the multi-week Earn-A-Bike program he participated in (and later his younger brother, also at City Garden) as a highlight of his childhood. Even better? He’s still riding bikes!
Big thanks to Ethan for joining us for the reunion and proving to be a great ride helper now as an adult! And kudos to all of our volunteers, staff, donors, partners, parents and students during this holiday season. You continue to amaze us!