Chugging beer while riding a tricycle in South Greensburg, all for a great cause
Typically, it might not be the best idea to mix competitive pedaling and beer chugging.
But that’s just how participants of the Rotary of Westmoreland’s second annual Trike and Chug spent Saturday afternoon to raise money for the purchase of special adaptive bicycles for disabled children.
The Rotary sponsored the day-long event at the Olde Spitfire Grille in South Greensburg.
Teams of racers pedaled around a makeshift track, stopping only to change riders and quickly chug a beer at the completion of each lap.
“We raised $5,000 last year to buy two bikes,” event co-director Michael Reese said. “Our goal this year is to double that.”
The adaptive bikes, which are outfitted with special equipment to allow disabled children to ride, are provided by Variety, a Pittsburgh-based charity that assists with the purchase of bikes, strollers and other customized equipment.
The group’s My Bike Program serves residents throughout Western Pennsylvania and into West Virginia.
Logan Korona, 9, of New Stanton received one of the $1,800 bikes purchased from the proceeds of last year’s event.
“He gets to bike ride with his little sister, and this also helps with his physical therapy,” said Logan’s father, Justin. “This lets us do something as a family. Now we can all just go riding a bike as a family.”
Saturday’s event, part of Greensburg’s Craft Beer Week, featured 10 teams of four races. That was in addition to a separate competition similar to a monster-truck pull in which tricycle riders pulled weighted sleds.
Reese said he had the idea after watching the 1980s classic movie “Revenge of the Nerds,” which featured a scene of college students participating in a beer-fueled relay race on child-sized tricycles.
“We are just so thrilled to be able to provide an experience to a young person where they can interact with their peers, potentially for the first time — feeling the wind in their hair; getting on a bicycle is one of the most American things you can do,” Reese said.
That’s the idea, according to Zach Marsh of Variety.
“Every child should be able to ride a bike, that’s first and foremost,” Marsh said. “We’re giving kids that fun, that enjoyment that belonging that a bike provides. That’s where you meet friends and enjoy memories with families and that’s what we’re providing.”
Marsh said his organization has handed out more than 3,000 bikes since the program started in 2012.
Rich Cholodofsky is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Rich at 724-830-6293, [email protected] or via Twitter .