Riders help rebuild Hoophouse

Clarkston News Staff Writer
Clarkston Family Farm, the Flying Rhino Cycling Club and Kinetic Systems Bicycles invite the community to Make a Donation and Ride.
Clarkston Family Farm and Flying Rhino Cycling Club planned to do a Mother’s Day event but when the event had to be cancelled a new idea was formed – bicyclists could still enjoy a ride with their family and make a donation to help the farm to rebuild their Hoophouse.
“I am super excited about it,” said Chelsea O’Brien, Clarkston Family Farm Executive Director. “All of our programming has been cancelled so this is a way we can encourage outdoor activity. It’s something good for families both mentally and emotionally to get outside and be safe. We were looking at a way to still support the shelter in place directive, support local businesses, and support local non-profits and support our mission.”

Clarkston Family Farm Executive Director Chelsea O’Brien models the CFF trucker hat people can receive during Make a Donation and Ride. Photo by Wendi Reardon Price

“I am trying to do things to keep people engaged which is getting out and riding their bikes,” said Jim Vassallo, from Flying Rhino Cycling Club. “Part of our bike club is holding events to encourage people in the community to go out and ride their bikes. Typically this time of year we have a Mother’s Day Back 40 Bike Ride. We can’t do that this year because we can’t have an event right now. In lieu of the event, I wanted to have the Back 40 in support of the farm and what a great way to support the farm and everything they stand for. We have a similar mission to get people out in nature. They are a good connection for us to get families involved.”
He added it’s a good healthy activity to do right now which can be done solo or with immediate family.
“I love it,” O’Brien added. “It’s perfect.”
The amount they would like to raise is $3,000 for the Hoophouse, the Clarkston Family Farm’s greenhouse which collapsed under the weight of the record snowfall the area had in November (“Help for Hoophouse,” November 20, 2019).
“It’s going to be built out of materials that will never collapse,” O’Brien explained. “It’s a state of the art facility and we still need money. There are some who were going to help fund us but no longer can. We can’t have our spring programs, but we can still grow. We can still grow local, beautiful, organic food right here in Clarkston. We can do a better job of growing it if our greenhouse can be built.”
She added it’s going to have ADA access and pathways. They are also building raised beds which are wheelchair accessible.
“Everything in the design is to inspire and educate youth and all ages, all abilities,” O’Brien said, adding she would like to work with more seniors.
For more information about Make a Donation and Ride or to donate and download a map of the route, please visit the Flying Rhinos Facebook page.
O’Brien added there are a couple of farm items donators will receive as an extra incentive including a reusable CFF cloth market bag, a CFF coffee mug and a CFF trucker hat.
Vassallo added Kinetic Systems Bicycles is open in downtown Clarkston to service bicycles.
“If people need anything like equipment, they can do a pick up,” he said.
“Get out and ride a bike,” Vassallo added. “It’s fun. It’s healthy. We want to get people connected with nature what a great way to do it by partnering up with the farm.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.