No matter the weather on April 6, the Spin Your Wheels fundraiser at Aspinwall Riverfront Park will see the shoreline abuzz with activity.
From spinning class to yoga and boxing, an array of exercise classes will be offered for all ages from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost begins at $25.
Proceeds benefit Riding for the Handicapped of Western PA (RHWPA), a group that works to advance the progress of disabled children through therapeutic horseback riding.
With the event now in its fifth year, organizers promise to outdo every previous effort, co-chairs Jennifer Evashavik and Katherine Hook said.
“It’s like a big party. We try to make it better each year,” Evashavik said.
Aspinwall Riverfront Park, with the glistening Allegheny River and marina, will host four spinning classes, Zumba, yoga, high intensity interval training, Power Fusion, boxing tutorials and other sessions scheduled in the large, open-air space by the docks.
There will be 14 spinning bikes, borrowed from Tribe 412 Fitness on Fox Chapel Road, to pedal on the porch beside the river. An awning overhead will protect participants, even if it snows like last year.
Sign-ups for all sessions are online at spinyourwheels.org.
The college friends from Wittenberg University started the fundraiser for autistic youngsters and others with disabilities. Evashavik’s son has been riding with RHWPA for a decade, and both women have seen firsthand the joy when a child sits high on a horse.
And the animals from a McCandless stable are retired equines continuing useful lives.
This year’s theme is, “Become an exercise hero for yourself and the kids.”
Even though the spinning bikes gave the fundraiser its name, there is something for everyone and every age.
There’s kid’s boot camp with 30-minute sessions. A trail around the Allegheny riverfront and boardwalk provide an adventure.
Also offered will be Mindful Movement, a free class adapted for every child in the room off the patio with its row of French doors.
Exercise classes are the center of Spin Your Wheels, but the event has many other spokes.
New this year is graffiti-pop artist Luca Paganico, who will create performance art. Free coffee courtesy of Beans ’n’ Cream and other beverages such as Bloody Marys will fuel the day.
Specialty drinks will be sold from Main Squeeze Juice truck.
And when the kids aren’t exercising, childcare is free.
Many local businesses and residents have donated items for raffle. Last year, a whole wall was set up and this year will be even better, Evashavik said.
Some vendors will be on hand and donating a portion of their sales.
Each participant gets a gift bag and a T-shirt.
“You can’t believe it until you see it,” Hook, a teacher at Hartwood Elementary, said.
Freebies include Motive and Bloom salons’ braid bars, Michelle Trumble’s mini-manicures, Klavon’s ice cream, Maida Steel’s chair massages and other prizes all spread out along Aspinwall’s riverfront.
The fundraiser is a chance to reinforce community feeling, too.
Evashavik, her husband Nick, and sons Luke and Ben; and Hook, husband John, and teens Emily and William, are Aspinwall residents.
Hook said the fundraiser “pulls the community in. Aspinwall is a strong-knit community.”