BWGI donation

Connie Chancey, left, vice president of the Golden Isles Track Club, poses with the club’s president Orrie McCrea and with Van Black, board chair of Bike Walk Golden Isles. The Golden Isles Track Club recently donated $1,000 to Bike Walk Golden Isles.

A nonprofit group that promotes fitness in the Golden Isles has thrown its support behind an emerging organization with a similar mission.

The Golden Isles Track Club donated $1,000 to Bike Walk Golden Isles to support a bike renovation project that will benefit Glynn County Schools this year.

Bike Walk Golden Isles recently acquired nearly 30 bikes that will be fixed up and donated to local schools for students to use.

Brunswick Landing Marina donated the bikes to BWGI in December.

The organization recently received its official 501c3 status, making the track club’s contribution the first tax-deductible donation for BWGI.

“A couple of our members had been part of the Bike Walk (Golden Isles) early on and kept me informed, and I just felt like it would be a great opportunity for us to collaborate because we have a lot of shared interests,” said Orrie McCrea, president of the Golden Isles Track Club. “We’re a running club, a walking club as well, and it’s in our interest to have safe places for us to do those activities.”

The funds for the donation were raised through the club’s annual Sunshine Festival, a 5K race held annually on the Fourth of July on St. Simons. The track club has kicked off its campaign for the 38th annual festival this summer.

The race is the club’s major fundraiser event.

Proceeds from last year’s event were donated to Bike Walk Golden Isles, the city of Brunswick, Glynn County, St. Simons Land Trust, Blythe Island and Fort Frederica for trail maintenance, and track and cross-country teams at Brunswick High School and Glynn Academy.

Businesses are invited to sponsor the 2022 race. More information can be found online at goldenislestrack.club.com.

The donation to Bike Walk Golden Isles will help the group achieve its intended goal of repairing and donating bikes to local schools, said Van Black, BWGI board chair.

“There is not one bike out of those 30 that’s 100% operational right now,” he said. “They need all kinds of different levels of repair, from just inner tubes to new seats to new chains … This $1,000 is going to allow us to start renovating those bikes and probably get a good percentage of them up and running.”

BWGI also plans to continue giving bike helmets and locks to students, Black said.

“Bike safety is a big part of what we’re trying to emphasize, especially for young kids,” he said. “There’s not enough education of bike safety — not just for kids, but for adults too.”

Bike Walk Golden Isles is also focused on improving local infrastructure to promote cycling and pedestrian activities, supporting work on the East Coast Greenway along Georgia’s coast and playing a role in events that highlight biking and walking.

To learn more, visit http://bikewalkgoldenisles.org.

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