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Every Body Rides With Grace holds first adaptive cycle parade

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On Saturday June 4, 2022, Every Body Rides with Grace (EBRWG), together with Velo Cruces, held its first Every Body Rides with Grace Adaptive Cycle Parade. Participants of all ages and abilities arrived on a variety of adaptive cycles, including adult tricycles, recumbent three wheelers, therapeutic cycles, electric cycles and even an electric unicycle. Many participants walked and others rolled in wheelchairs, strollers and bicycles.

The event was held at the Mesilla Community Center in the Town of Mesilla.

The HUB Community Bike Shop volunteers were on site to fix flats and do light repairs. DJ MC Solis kept the party going with a great selection of old and new hits. A decoration station was stocked with head boppers, garland tinsel, stickers and spoke beads, as participants were invited to decorate their cycles and helmets before the parade. Kona Ice, snacks and water kept everyone fueled up and hydrated.

Lt. Ben Azcarate of the Mesilla Marshals office served as grand marshal of the parade, leading participants along a 1-mile loop through the town square and the streets of Mesilla.

League of American Bicyclists, League Cycling Instructor (LCI) George Pearson created the route and he and Las Cruces Public Schools Safe Routes to Schools Coordinator Ashleigh Curry (LCI) rode along with participants to keep everyone safe and on track. The event was also attended by members of the Monumental Loop, MTB NM, Vulnerable Road Users NM, the Las Cruces Police Department and local physical and occupational therapists.

The highlight of the event was when 15-year-old Sevon Negron received a new red Schwinn Meridian Tricycle. The 26-inch cycle is suitable for people ranging from 5 feet to 6-feet, 1-inch tall and boasts a 300-pound weight capacity. It has a wide padded seat, cargo basket and linear pull breaks. Sevon and his family were all smiles and even shed a few happy tears when Sevon received a big round of applause from the happy crowd. Sevon hopped right onto his Spiderman red cycle for a photo op and was fitted with a new helmet. Sevon is the sixth recipient of an adaptive cycle through EBRWG.

EBRWG, in partnership with Velo Cruces, was awarded a quality-of-life grant by the New Mexico Commission on Disability (NMCD) in June 2021. Additionally, the community has supported the program through private donations and through the Pay it Forward with Grace GoFundMe page (https://gofund.me/85a8a541). EBRWG continues to seek grants and other funding opportunities to continue giving adaptive cycles to riders who need them.

The parade was funded by the NMCD grant and was held to celebrate adaptive cycle recipients and to create a community riding event. As part of the grant requirements, EBRWG has created a short survey to collect information about local knowledge and availability of adaptive cycles. Your participation will help us better serve our community. Take the survey at www.surveymonkey.com/r/2ZZ9HLQ.

Visit www.velocruces.org/ride-with-grace.

Contact Andrea Holguin at 575-635-2231 and ridewgrace@gmail.com.