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Civil staff build bikes for kids

 Eleven local kids will get a brand new bike for Christmas as a result of a bike-building event hosted by urban design consulting company Urban Systems Thursday, Dec. 12.,  which brought together Urban Systems staff, Cranbrook city councillors, city staff and Big Brothers Big Sisters children, volunteers and staff to build the bikes, in collaboration with Gerick Sports. Clockwise from top: Damara Young and  Mike Stephen of Gerick Sports; Taina Pelletier-Ludvigson; Dante Young (left) and Bob Whetham; Brodie Harris and Mom Laurie Harris; Kirion McKerrow. - Sally MacDonald photos
Eleven local kids will get a brand new bike for Christmas as a result of a bike-building event hosted by urban design consulting company Urban Systems Thursday, Dec. 12., which brought together Urban Systems staff, Cranbrook city councillors, city staff and Big Brothers Big Sisters children, volunteers and staff to build the bikes, in collaboration with Gerick Sports. Clockwise from top: Damara Young and Mike Stephen of Gerick Sports; Taina Pelletier-Ludvigson; Dante Young (left) and Bob Whetham; Brodie Harris and Mom Laurie Harris; Kirion McKerrow.
— image credit: Sally MacDonald photos

Eleven local kids will get a brand new bike for Christmas, after a special event Thursday, Dec. 12.

Engineering, planning and urban design consulting company Urban Systems hosted the event at the Prestige, bringing together its own staff, Cranbrook city councillors, city staff and Big Brothers Big Sisters children, volunteers and staff to build 11 bikes, in collaboration with Gerick Sports.

Urban Systems, which is opening a Cranbrook office in 2014, supports backyard projects in the communities it works in through the Urban Systems Foundation.

The bike building event was the brainchild of principal Sheldon Gull.

"It's a great way of teambuilding for us and a way to give back to the city," he said. "This will make an impact on kids and families."

On Thursday evening, Urban Systems brought everybody together to build 11 bikes for Big Brothers Big Sisters children. Not only did the children receive a brand new bike, they got to help put it together, overseen by Gerick Sports staff.

"We're going to see some very happy and excited kids," said Gull.

As the grinning children got to take their bikes out of boxes for the first time, Big Brothers Big Sisters executive director Dana Osiowy applauded the initiative, saying that at first she thought it was too good to be true.

"It's a beautiful, wonderful thing. And it's fun because the kids get to be a part of it," she said.

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