ST CHARLES, Ill. — Biking has become a symbol of the stay-at-home lifestyle. It’s been an outdoor hobby helping people roll through the pandemic. But not all families have been able to hop on board.
A long-time suburban bike shop owner wants to make the outdoor activity accessible to everybody.
Hal Honeyman and his family have been selling bikes for 46 years. Business has never been better.
“This has been our best year since we started,” he said.” Last week we got in about 25 bikes and they were old sold pretty much before they got here.”
Among the inventory at the St Charles shop are adaptive bikes. Honeyman and his team specialize in selling and tweaking them as part of Project Mobility, the family’s non-profit inspired by Honeyman’s son.
“I have a son named Jacob who is 27-years-old and he has cerebral palsy,” he said. “He’s a triplet and when his two sisters started riding a bike, we wanted to find a way we could be a bicycling family and it just snowballed from there.”
Adaptive bikes are for riders of any ability. Like Dayna Cuervo, who has spina bifida. The 6-year-old is in the process of getting fitted for her very own set of wheels.
The Cuervo family started riding regularly during the stay-at-home-order in the spring, but Dayna stayed behind.
Kimberly Dorencz-Cuervo is Dayna’s mother.
“One way that we get to go out as a family and do things is by bike riding and it really brings normalcy to our days,” she said. “Dayna can’t participate in it so having this bike would just be able to make her feel included and inclusivity is so important to us it would be a blessing.”
But adaptive bikes come with a hefty price tag. They range from $1000 to $5000. That’s why the family is participating in a fundraising drive with the hope of purchasing one for Dayna, who loved her first spin around the parking lot.
“I think the feeling of belonging can increase her mental health and her self-esteem,” Dorencz-Cuervo said. “It’s a wonderful thing. She was so happy riding that bike and to see that smile, it’s worth it.”
Honeyman and his team are hoping to raise enough money to provide several more bikes to children who need them. More information on their website.