PNS Daily Newscast - September 20, 2019 

A whistleblower complaint against President Trump sets off tug-of-war between Congress and the White House; and students around the world strike today to demand action on climate change.

2020Talks - September 20, 2019. (3 min.)  

Climate change is a big issue this election season, and global climate strikes kick off, while UAW labor strikes continue.

Daily Newscasts

Bike Project Continues Community-Building Mission Past Holidays

The Boise Bicycle Project continues to provide Treasure Valley kids with bikes after its annual giveaway in December. (Boise Bicycle Project)
The Boise Bicycle Project continues to provide Treasure Valley kids with bikes after its annual giveaway in December. (Boise Bicycle Project)
January 2, 2019

BOISE, Idaho — For the Boise Bicycle Project, strong communities are pedal-powered. The group is coming off its annual "holiday kids bike giveaway," setting a personal record this year by giving away more than 550 bikes to Idahoans in the Treasure Valley.

But the project doesn't end there. Bikes are collected throughout the year and refurbished in part through a partnership with the South Boise Women's Correctional Center. Emily Summerhays, operations manager for BBP, described the program.

"The Shifting Gears program takes place inside the correctional center where we have mechanics going to teach them how to work on kids' bicycles,” Summerhays said. “And then they have a goal of a number of bicycles they refurbish, and upon that number, they earn a bicycle for themselves, which is available upon their release."

Summerhays said the bike project found that women needed a mode of transportation immediately after being released so that they could network and find a job. The group continues to give away bikes to kids throughout the year, and Summerhays said they'll start offering free mobile repair stations to children in the spring.

Summerhays said the bike project is invested in the belief that Boise could be the bike capital of America. However, she said, one challenge to its potential is a pesky weed called a goathead.

"A goathead is a little weed that's like a little ball of fury with thorns on it,” she said. “And we joke that they ruin rides because they create so many flat tires here in Boise."

In 2018, the bike project held its first annual "Goathead Fest," bringing the community together to remove these plants. In total, volunteers collected 3,800 pounds of goatheads.

While the bike project doesn't have plans to expand, Summerhays said she's thrilled to see its model inspire others in Twin Falls and Coeur D'Alene. She said bicycles are powerful tools for a community.

"We believe that the bicycle is maybe the most grassroots and organic way to connect to your community and to see what your community has to offer,“ she said. “And we just want everybody out there riding and riding safely."

Eric Tegethoff, Public News Service - ID