Recycle those cycles during Peters Township’s Cleanup Day
One winter day, Bill Shader was cycling along Sugar Run Road in Nottingham Township when he noticed someone had put four bikes by the street for the trash collector.
He promptly returned to his Peters Township home, got in his van and picked up the would-be refuse for recreational reuse.
“The mechanical part really didn’t take that long,” he said about his repair efforts. “As far as getting the rust off and making it presentable, one bike I probably spent five or six hours on. But it was in decent shape to begin with, and during winter, I had the time to do it.”
Shader has a long history of rescuing bicycles, starting with a program in the city of Pittsburgh and bringing the concept to Peters in 2004. Since then, he’s led a group of volunteers who like to work on bringing bikes back to, shall we say, cyclability.
They will be on hand from 9 a.m. to noon April 22, Earth Day, in conjunction with the township’s annual Great American Cleanup Day. Residents can bring drop off their old bicycles to the public works facility, 750 Bebout Road, during the event or prior to it during regular business hours.
Recycling opportunities also are available that Saturday morning for the likes of automotive batteries and scrap metal, and electronic items such as televisions, computers and monitors. Tires will be accepted at a charge of $3 each.
As for the bicycles, once they’re in condition for riding, they’ll be taken to three charitable organizations: Washington City Mission, Washington County Food Bank and the Brother’s Brother Foundation.
Some 1,000 bikes have been donated since the Peters program started, and Shrader said repairing them these days isn’t quite as much of a task.
“Over the years, as biking has gotten much more popular, the quality has gotten better and better,” he said. “We really do get some good stuff.”
As for Cleanup Day, Peters Township’s effort is part of the Keep America Beautiful Campaign, a collective of programs and resources to help end littering, increase recycling and beautify communities.
Volunteers will meet at 9 a.m. April 22 at the Community Recreation Center, 700 Meredith Drive, and will be provided with a designated cleanup location, garbage bags, gloves and a safety vest. Sign-ups are encouraged, but not required, and walk-ins are welcome.