Local kids pedal for a good cause

Children in the Christian and Missionary Alliance Church’s day-care program rode bicycles and tricycles around a small track in the church parking lot on Tuesday to raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Journal photo by Andy Kerstetter

The sight of children riding bicycles and tricycles outside on a sunny morning isn’t all that unusual in Corry.

But for the Christian and Missionary Alliance Church’s day-care program, Tuesday morning’s wheeled activities had more purpose than meets the eye.

For the fourth year in a row, children in the program pedaled their bikes and trikes around a track in the church’s parking lot from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. to raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital — an event known as St. Jude’s Trike-a-thon.

“(The kids) get pledges for riding for an hour,” said Wendy Haestier, assistant director of the CMA’s day-care program. “The pledges can range anywhere from $1 to around $30.”

A pledge form is sent home with each child prior to the event, and most pledges come from the parents, family and friends of the kids.

At this year’s trike-a-thon, the kids raised more than $300 through their pledges.

Although the day-care program is open to kids ages 6 weeks through sixth grade, most of the children riding in the trike-a-thon were ages 2 and up, Haestier said.

The kids could bring their own bikes and trikes from home, which gave some of them more of an incentive to participate, Haestier said. However, the day-care also has its own bikes and trikes that children may use if they don’t bring one from home.

Additionally, participating children can win prizes, depending on the amount of pledges they get. They also receive a certificate for participating in the trike-a-thon.

Although fun and prizes might have overshadowed the underlying purpose of the event, some of the children understood the importance of what they did.

“The younger ones might not understand what’s really going on, but the older ones definitely do,” Haestier said.

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