By Leila Dycus, Intern
Got wheels, will spin… for kids.
Come to Camp Twin Lakes for the annual Spin for Kids event this weekend, Oct. 19-20. The event will be held at the Rutledge campus.
Spin for Kids is designed for riders of all skill levels to come together and raise money for the camp.
“The cycling community is very grassroots– one person signs up and they get their friend to sign up,” said Caitlin Still, events coordinator at Camp Twin Lakes.
Spin for Kids was actually founded by a Camp Twin Lakes board member, David Shoulberg, “an avid athlete,” Still said.
Shoulberg had seen sporting events be used by other organizations to raise money. Passionate about Camp Twin Lakes he offered up the suggestion to host a bike ride benefit. Spin for Kids has since became an annual event, bringing riders and their family to camp for a weekend each fall.
“We’re in a really good position because our location is out in Morgan County, and Morgan County is a prime biking area. The rolling hills, the beautiful scenery, people absolutely love it,” Still said.
Spin for Kids brings riders from all over the state to Morgan County. Last year 935 riders participated in the event.
Saturday is Mountain Biking Day and Sunday is the Road Race. Road riders can cruise courses that range in distances from 5 miles to 100 miles. After the race riders and their families have the chance to experience camp: activities are open, a live band plays and food is catered, all in an effort to show the riders and their families what the money raised is going to support.
Last year, Spin for Kids raised $400,000, and this year the camp hopes to raise more. This money goes towards bringing kids to camp.
“Due to our great sponsorships, 100 percent of the funds raised from this event goes directly to Camp Twin Lakes and the 80 percent subsidy that we provide to all of our campers,” Still said.
Camp Twin Lakes was founded 20 years ago and is designed for children facing serious illness and disabilities. It is a place where these kids can come and have their own summer camp experience. Each year the camp welcomes over 9,000 campers. With support Camp Twin Lakes is able to cover 80 percent of the cost for each camper. A week of camp for one camper costs $800.
“It gives them the chance to just be kids. A lot of times campers that come spend a lot of time in doctors’ offices; they don’t get to focus on being a kid. They’re health and well-being is always at the forefront, so when they get to come to camp, their health is still at the forefront, but they get to be a kid and have fun,” Still said.
If it weren’t for events like Spin for Kids, many campers would never make it through the gates at Camp Twin Lakes. Even though the race is this weekend, there is still time to sign up! Go to www.spinforkids.org to join the ride before Friday, Oct. 18.