Ask Renee: Recycling and donating used bikes 

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After a great season, I think it’s time to retire my bike and upgrade for next year (hoping to find a good end-of-season sale!). What should I do with my old bike?



Every good bike deserves a good retirement party. Lucky for you, there are plenty of opportunities to give yours a proper send-off this Fall.

Starting this week, Shifting Gears (a refurbishing program of Bicycle Garage Indy) is holding a bike donation drive in partnership with Fresh Thyme Markets. Shifting Gears has donated 240 bicycles to people in need so far in 2016, but the demand exceeds the available bicycles. They currently have requests for more than 200 bicycles. The program works with the Indiana Department of Correction to provide meaningful work opportunities for offenders to prepare them for successful re-entry. Wouldn’t it be great to know that your old bike could provide job training and help someone in need?

Meanwhile, Freewheelin’ Community Bikes recently launched their Youth Employment Apprenticeship Program, employing young adults to help them develop the skills, confidence and grit they need to be successful and make a positive impact on their community – and repair bikes, of course. Check out the Freewheelin’ Facebook page to be inspired by their new Apprentices and consider donating your bike and/or some cash. You can also put their Bee Like Nancy Ride (October 15) and Bikesgiving (November 12) events on your calendar.

For your bike’s final hurrah, hit the road for the 2016 Mayor’s Bike Ride on October 28.

Piece out,

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About The Author

Renee Sweany

Renee Sweany

Renee has spent the past several years surrounding herself with like-minded people who share her passion for caring for the planet. She began writing “Ask Renee” after four years of offering green tips through her e-newsletter Green Piece Indy. E-mail her your green living queries at

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