Django Lynge, 13, and Dustin Hines, 14, stand ready for Wednesday’s ReCyclery Mountain Bike Club ride around Port Townsend. (Diane Urbani de la Paz/Peninsula Daily News)

Django Lynge, 13, and Dustin Hines, 14, stand ready for Wednesday’s ReCyclery Mountain Bike Club ride around Port Townsend. (Diane Urbani de la Paz/Peninsula Daily News)

The ReCyclery launching capital campaign to grow

Plumbing, electrical upgrades could be in future for nonprofit

PORT TOWNSEND — A herd of young riders, on their bikes and raring to go, gathered last week outside the ReCyclery. The nonprofit shop is also relatively young, located at the corner of Blaine and Kearney streets since 2010 — and it, too, is about to grow.

The ReCyclery is embarking on phase one of a capital campaign to raise $135,000 for excavation and laying of water and sewer pipes, an upgrade to the electrical and heating system and improved security equipment: “the really unsexy part,” executive director Liz Revord quipped.

Instead of a rented portable restroom, the ReCyclery will have a bathroom integrated into its building — and that will be just the start, she added.

The long-term vision is to create a more inviting, safer space for people to come and learn about the joys and challenges of bicycling on the North Olympic Peninsula.

That applies to everybody, and not just those who can afford brand-new wheels, added board member Dave Thielk.

“That’s where the rubber hits the road: We want to make sure anybody who needs a bike has access to one,” he said.

On a blustery Wednesday afternoon, teenagers of the ReCyclery Mountain Bike Club suited up for their weekly ride.

“We not only get to ride with friends, we get to learn new skills every day. That’s pretty fun,” said Aiden Kraft, 14.

“It’s fun just to ride around with other people,” added Django Lynge, 13.

And with that, they were off, with volunteer instructors Matt Tyler, Daniel Shyles and Linda Lenz as the shepherds.

The Mountain Bike Club is one of the programs the ReCyclery runs in Jefferson County.

Recent activities also include a free fix-your-bike station in Brinnon, the Earn-a-Bike program and bike safety and education days at Blue Heron and Quilcene middle schools.

And this fall, Windermere Agents of Good Roots will sponsor the Holiday Kids’ Bike Giveaway to provide some 40 bicycles to youngsters who wouldn’t otherwise receive such a gift.

These programs, Revord said, are facets of the ReCyclery’s mission: “promoting bicycle use for a healthier and more sustainable community.”

For more than a decade now, the operation has carried on in a rustic setting. It’s a full-service bike shop that has never had running water. The mechanics’ stations — and the rest of the structure — are open to the elements.

“It wasn’t until COVID, in 2020, that we got a handwashing station versus just the porta-john,” Revord said.

The ReCyclery accepts and refurbishes donated bicycles for all ages, and it does not turn people away for lack of funds when they need a bike fixed, she added.

This is the first time the operation has mounted a large-scale capital campaign. Once the first phase is complete, a second phase will raise funds for classrooms, office space and a retail showroom.

For now, the ReCyclery is opening several portals for donations. Its website, PTReCyclery.org, has a link for online contributions under Capital Campaign. Checks can be dropped off or mailed to 1925 Blaine St., Port Townsend, WA 98368. Supporters interested in discussing donations more than $500 are invited to contact the board of directors at [email protected] or 971-266-3170.

For those who want to get out for a ride, the annual Tour de Forts will be this Saturday. It’s a gran fondo, Italian for big ride, covering 100 kilometers — 62 miles — while there also will be 14- and 26-mile options.

Beginning and ending at Discovery Bay Brewing in Port Townsend, the tour will stop at Fort Worden, Fort Townsend and Fort Flagler state parks, with snacks provided at the start and free beverages at the finish. General registration is $50, $25 for students and free for cyclists 12 and younger, with details under the Tour de Forts link at PTReCyclery.org.

Meanwhile, the Mountain Bike Club headed out for a loop of its own last Wednesday. Leader Matt Tyler planned a swing by Cappy’s Trails, then over to the Jacob Miller Road neighborhood, then back to the ReCyclery for a total of 14 miles.

The members, fifth- through eighth-graders, receive instruction according to their skill level, and excursions to trails in Port Ludlow or Port Gamble are possible down the road.

Dustin Hines, 14, is a dedicated member of the club.

The leaders “teach us in older groups and younger groups,” he noted. “I like that we get to bike in all different places.”

________

Jefferson County senior reporter Diane Urbani de la Paz can be reached at 360-417-3509 or [email protected]

Warming up for a Mountain Bike Club ride are, from left, volunteer instructor Linda Lenz, students Dustin Hines and Darby Berg, guest rider Dimitri Kuznetsov and student Max Galligan-Hong. The club is among the ReCyclery’s programs for young people across Jefferson County. (Diane Urbani de la Paz/Peninsula Daily News)

Warming up for a Mountain Bike Club ride are, from left, volunteer instructor Linda Lenz, students Dustin Hines and Darby Berg, guest rider Dimitri Kuznetsov and student Max Galligan-Hong. The club is among the ReCyclery’s programs for young people across Jefferson County. (Diane Urbani de la Paz/Peninsula Daily News)

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