GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. –
The Saturday before Christmas and Harrison Park Middle School in Grand Rapids was packed with enthusiastic children.
‘I’m geeked up to be here,” said a giddy 10-year-old Javeon Walker.
Hundreds of children were anxiously waiting to get their hands on a new bicycle. The charity, Elves and More West Michigan Inc., delivered 1050 new bikes to the school to be handed out to neighborhood kids.
Volunteers work all year to raise money, assemble, and deliver the bikes.
“The hardest part has been keeping it a secret,” said Principal Mike Nasser, who got a call from the charity this year notifying the school they were selected.
Families had to bring identification to prove they were from the neighborhood and then line up.
For children like 9-year-old Tyzaia Caver, it was all a new experience.
“It’s my first time every getting a bike and I really don’t know how to ride, so I’m going to do a lot of practicing,” said Caver.
The children were all fitted for their bikes and a helmet, then it was time to get rolling.
Volunteers helped the kids adjust their bike seats and go for a test drive.
The elves also delivered a treasure box of gifts for the children under the age of four.
“I’ve been a principal for 21 years and I’ve never had an opportunity like this,” said Nasser.
“Anytime you can give a kid something like this, it is pretty special,” he said.
All the kids left with smiles on their faces and some new wheels for Christimas.
“I think they are very kind for doing this, thank you,” said Tyzaia Caver.
Elves and More West Michigan Inc. has been delivering free bikes to local neighborhoods since 2005.