Garrett Fischer (from left)

Garrett Fischer (from left)

Youth find reason to ride with Sprockids

The Boys and Girls Club's Sprockids program is getting kids off the couch and onto the mountain biking trails in Williams Lake.

The Boys and Girls Club of Williams Lake and District’s Sprockids program is getting kids off the couch and onto the mountain biking trails in Williams Lake.

The program, started in the lakecity by Troy Forcier 16 years ago, is free for any youth in the community and offers participants the opportunity to learn mountain biking skills, along with life skills, values and strategies to guide them throughout their lives.

“We have a big mountain biking community in Williams Lake that has created like 200 trails in the city, and they’re just a natural resource and the Boys and Girls Club has recognized the value of this and made it possible for youth to also be involved,” said Denise Deschene, the Sprockids leader and also a mental health and substance use outreach prevention worker with Interior Health.

“There’s bikes there for kids to use, helmets they can borrow and the opportunity to learn about the trails and to explore them. It’s something that our community has that youth are able to utilize and we’re really lucky.”

Deschene said she got involved with the program 10 years ago after seeing it as an opportunity to engage with youth in a pro-social way.

“It may be a protective factor in keeping them from maybe getting involved in some unhealthy activities like drugs and alcohol,” she said. “[Mountain biking] kind of has that adrenaline rush that kids are seeking, especially boys.”

Deschene, along with two youth instructors, Tyler Tenning and Austin Boehm, meet at the BGCWLD Mondays and Wednesdays after school before deciding with participants where to ride that day.

Tenning, 16, said he’d recommend the program to anyone wanting to learn about mountain biking and the trail networks in Williams Lake.

“It gives an opportunity for kids however old to come and ride for free and get out and explore the trails and meet new friends,” Tenning said. “They get to learn how to fix their bikes, too and a little bit of trail maintenance.”

Cody Tetu, 14, recently moved to Williams Lake from Burnaby and has been attending Sprockids rides for the past few weeks.

Prior to moving to Williams Lake, he had never downhill mountain biked.

“It’s a very good program,” he said. “They have all the supplies here and it gets kids out and active. It’s something people should try and it gets people out of their comfort zone.”

Garrett Fischer, 12, has been participating in Sprockids since he was eight years old.

“It’s just fun in general,” he said. “I don’t usually ride that much but when I do Sprockids it gets me out to ride and you get to meet new people.”

Deschene added she hopes to one day expand the program to offer a girls-only course through the BGCWLD.

“We’re really wanting to get more girls involved more because it’s predominantly a boys’ sport and we’re still looking at ways to do that,” she said.

“[But] anyone is welcome. Anyone who wants to ride.”

Sprockids sessions kick off at 3:30 p.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays at the BGCWLD.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Maggie Ferguson continues to deliver pet food to communities in B.C’s Central Interior and North. She hopes to make things easier by eventually purchasing a truck and trailer through fundraising efforts. (Perfect Pastures Animal Sanctuary Facebook photo)
From Delta with love, Maggie Ferguson helps northern pet owners with food

Animal sanctuary owner leads efforts in delivering thousands of pounds of pet food

A man wearing a mask against coronavirus walks past an NHS advertisement about COVID-19 in London, Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2021. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
92 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths: Interior Health

The region is reporting 92 cases after the weekend

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: B.C. seniors aged 90+ can start to sign up for vaccination on March 8

Long-term care residents protected by shots already given

(Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
Murder charge laid in February 2020 stabbing death of Smithers man

Michael Egenolf is charged with the second-degree murder of Brodie Cumiskey

Williams Lake RCMP are investigating after suspects assaulted two employees at a convenience store and fled with cash and merchandise. (Black Press file photo)
Williams Lake RCMP investigating robbery at local convenience store

The robbery occurred Saturday evening, Feb. 27

Langley resident Carrie MacKay shared a video showing how stairs are a challenge after spending weeks in hospital battling COVID-19 (Special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Stairs a challenge for B.C. woman who chronicled COVID-19 battle

‘I can now walk for six (to) 10 minutes a day’

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A student from Dawson Creek is the winner of Tolko’s Orange Shirt Day design contest for 2021. (Tolko photo)
Tolko contest features northern winner

Student from Dawson Creek beats out entries Canadawide for Orange Shirt Day design contest win

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s coronavirus situation, May 8, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C.’s weekend COVID-19 cases: 532 Saturday, 508 Sunday, 438 Monday

Fraser Health still has most, eight more coronavirus deaths

Vernon’s Noric House long-term care facility’s COVID-10 outbreak has been declared over by Interior Health. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
COVID outbreak at Vernon’s Noric House declared over

10 deaths were linked to the outbreak at long-term care facility

B.C. Attorney General David Eby speaks in the legislature, Dec. 7, 2020. Eby was given responsibility for housing after the October 2020 provincial election. (Hansard TV)
B.C. extends COVID-19 rent freeze again, to the end of 2021

‘Renoviction’ rules tightened, rent capped to inflation in 2022

Face mask hangs from a rear-view mirror. (Black Press image)
B.C. CDC unveils guide on how to carpool during the pandemic

Wearing masks, keeping windows open key to slowing the spread of COVID-19

Churches, including Langley’s Riverside Calvary Church, are challenging the regulations barring them from holding in-person worship services during COVID-19. (Langley Advance Times file)
Det. Sgt. Jim Callender. (Hamilton Police Service screenshot)
B.C. man dead, woman seriously injured after shooting in Hamilton, Ont.

The man was in the process of moving to the greater Toronto area, police say

Most Read