5th Annual 'Riding for a Safer Tomorrow' event a success
The 'Riding for a Safer Tomorrow' event brought the community together Saturday. Organizers credit biking with being a great way to start conversation and talk about issues that matter most.
"We have to do something different. We have to do something innovative," said sponsor and Peoria Police detective, Stevie Hughes.
The event offered a chance for youth to interact with professionals, like law enforcement.
"To put a little bit of personality and let them know who we are, as we try to do four miles on a bike ride, which most of us don't do all the time," added Hughes.
The kids got an even sweeter deal by meeting NBA superstar Shaun Livingston. His foundation was one of the sponsors of the event as well.
"You know, just really trying to support the community, get the kids out, do something positive," said Livingston. Hughes chimed in after explaining, "I've found in my lifetime, the best way to get a conversation going is when you are exercising."
While biking, youth and officers chatted about well, everything, but safety was a heavy focus.
"When people are riding their bicycle, it's a better connection than, for example, with the police officers, a squad car," said another sponsor, Bernice Gordon-Young
Organizers agree those connections are powerful because "They remember you now as a person, but they associate you with your job, so that's a beautiful thing," Hughes shared.
The event is in its fifth year and they do not plan to stop anytime soon.