SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Jan Maloff has been collecting bikes for this year’s Central New York Bike Giveaway for months. But he needs your help to meet his goal.
It may not look like Santa’s Workshop, but it sure feels like it for volunteers. From fixing the brakes to replacing the tires, it’s a seven-day-a-week job for volunteers dedicating their time and strength to sprucing up these wheels.
“I usually come five to six days a week,” said Kevin Maier, a volunteer.
Maier has been volunteering at the CNY Bike Giveaway for nearly a decade. He says he had some experience with working on bicycles but has learned a lot over the years. He now spends a lot of his day at the State Fairgrounds during November and December, making sure the bikes are safe and ready to ride next month.
“The bikes come in and you’ve got to decide what can be fixed, what’s going to take four hours to fix. We really can’t do that,” said Maier.
With not enough volunteers or bike donations, Jan Maloff, organizer of the CNY Bike Giveaway, says this holiday season could be a challenge. He’s been asking for people to give up their unused bicycles so they can be donated at this year’s CNY Bike Giveaway to kids and families who don’t have one.
“Right now, I probably have 800 bicycles. Now, that doesn’t mean they’re all good bikes,” said Maloff.
Only about 400 are rideable, a small number compared to the 2500 Maloff is hoping to collect by next month. But he can’t do it alone.
Maloff says he’s been collecting the bikes since the summer, but donations are lagging this year.
“We’ll take any bike in any condition. If we can’t repair that bike, we will salvage that bike for parts,” said Maloff.
And with more bikes, more volunteers are still needed. No matter your skill level, any help from anyone can go a long way.
Kash Loomis, only 12 years old, spent his Friday afternoon with family volunteering to help clean off donated bikes, something he enjoys doing, knowing it’s all for a great cause.
“It’s just something we like to do,” said Loomis.
Right now, there are 40 volunteers. But Maloff says they can use plenty more, along with plenty more bikes.
Bikes can be donated from now until December 20 at the State Fairgrounds. Any unused bike can be dropped off any day of the week. Volunteers will be working on the bikes seven days a week. To drop off a bike, enter through Gate 2 and follow the bike drop-off signs.
Monetary donations are also needed. If you would like to donate:
Mail a check or cash: CNY Family Bicycle Giveaway, 319 Barrington Road, Syracuse, New York 13214
This year’s bike giveaway is being held on December 22 at Fowler High School, starting at 10 a.m. until all the bikes are gone.
Click here for more details.