The Prince Albert Police Service bicycle rodeo sets the stage for a safe summer


Herald file photo. Prince Albert Police Service (PAPS) Sgt. Derek Simonson leads a young cyclist from Prince Albert through the skills course at the 2023 Bike Rodeo. The PAPS Community Policing Unit and its partners will host the 2024 Bike Rodeo on Saturday in the Art Hauser Center parking lot .

As the weather warms, Prince Albert police officers and their community partners will ensure local cyclists have a safe start to the summer.

The Prince Albert Police Service (PAPS) Community Policing Unit will host a bike rodeo on Saturday to provide cyclists of all ages with safety tips and maintenance advice. PAPS Sgt. Derek Simonson expects the number of cyclists on Prince Albert roads to increase sharply over the next week. Therefore, the cycle rodeo is a great opportunity to have fun and make sure everyone is prepared for summer.

“It provides positive community engagement,” Simonson said. “It’s a really fun event for the kids who can do it with their parents. It helps create the conditions for a safe summer and driving season.

“We know it's a short time here in Saskatchewan, but for the time they're out on the bike, we definitely hope we give them some tools to make it safer.”

Helmets are one of the most important tools. At Saturday's bike rodeo there will be a fitting station where riders can learn to wear their helmets correctly. Simonson said it's the most important thing cyclists can do to stay safe.

“We still see kids without bike helmets and so on. So if we can influence that safety aspect a little bit, hopefully that will make a big difference,” he explained.

While it is important to raise awareness about safety, the bicycle rodeo also provides law enforcement officers with an opportunity to interact with the community. Simonson said PAPS and the Prince Albert Police Service Association would typically donate something and purchase a few items as gifts, adding that officers see the rodeo as a great opportunity to engage with the community.

Members of the Prince Albert Fire Department and Parkland Ambulance will also be on site to assist with the helmet fitting station and bike riding course. Canadian Tire and the Prevention Institute are also helping with donations.

“We have a lot of partners and it’s a great event,” Simonson said.

“It's free and hopefully the weather is good. We don’t always have control over that and we hope to see a lot of families out this Saturday.”

The 2024 Prince Albert Police Service Bike Rodeo will be held on Saturday, May 18, from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the Art Hauser Center parking lot.

@kerr_jas • [email protected]