MORAGA -- The "Cycle Recycle," now in its 15th year, is again collecting old, unused and outgrown bicycles to be repaired, refurbished and donated to groups which then gift them to underprivileged kids The program is run by Tom and Bobbie Preston of Moraga, who early each November collect gently used bicycles and tricycles to benefit Bay Area charitable groups.

This yearthe collected bikes and trikes will go to rips for Kids/The Recyclery in Marin County, and to the Marsh Creek Detention Facility near Clayton. The Recyclery repairs and refurbishes bike and trikes to sell at deep discount, to support their Trips for Kids and Safe Routes programs. Trips for Kids provides free bicycling trips for underprivileged kids, an after-school program in which kids can study in the study hall, earn a bike by learning to build their own bike, or just hang out after school in a safe environment in the Canal district of San Rafael until their working parents return home. At Christmas time TFK gives neighborhood kids bikes for Christmas, often their main or only Christmas gift.


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Last year 60 such bike were given out at the annual Christmas Party, with many more given during the year.

The inmates at the low-security Marsh Creek Detention Facility for minor offenders repair and refurbish bikes, not only learning a skill but providing like-new bikes for the Sheriff's Department to distribute to worthy charitable organizations in the area, such as the Volunteer Center of the East Bay in Walnut Creek and the Cambridge Community Center in Concord, to be given as Christmas presents to underprivileged kids.

Over the program's 14 years, Cycle Recycle has provided approximately 2,500 bikes to area kids.

Gently used repairable bikes and tricycles or usable bike parts will be accepted until Dec. 1; they can be dropped off at the Prestons' home at 1307 Larch Ave. in Moraga. No scooters, skateboards or plastic bikes, please. Such dropoffs don't have to be arranged in advance, but for more information, call the Prestons at 925-376-8474.

-- Staff report