WORCA bike swap returns May 2 

Get set for summer while helping build trails

click to enlarge FILE PHOTO - stop and swap The selection of bikes at the 2010 WORCA bike swap is shown. This year's event is poised to surpass it.
  • File photo
  • stop and swap The selection of bikes at the 2010 WORCA bike swap is shown. This year's event is poised to surpass it.

Preparations are going smoothly for the Whistler Off-Road Cycling Association's (WORCA) annual bike swap.

Organizer Hilary Davison, one of WORCA's directors at large, said there would be more tables than last year for sellers to display their wares at the Whistler Olympic Plaza on May 2. The sale runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and anyone whose items haven't sold can auction them off beginning at 2:15 p.m. Those interested in auctioning off their items must be present to set prices. Whistler FM morning host Chris Quinlan will serve as the auctioneer.

At an event where crowds begin to pool well before the official opening, there's something for nearly everyone. Some bikes will be tip-top, while others may need a little fixing up, but could be a steal for the buyer willing to put in the work.

"There's everything," Davison said. "A lot of people go to great trouble to make sure it's in the best possible condition to get the best value and other people pull something out from under their deck and are dropping it off."

Davison explained the bulk of the bikes are usually downhill and cross-country bikes, which go quickly, while children's bikes are also common. Road bikes and cruisers tend to be rare, and the BMX selection is usually hard to find.

In terms of components, everything from bike bags to forks to handlebars are also on sale.

Davison noted a lot has remained steady from previous years, as the tag fee is still $2 per item, and commission is 10 per cent on sales $1,000 or less and 15 per cent on sales greater than $1,000.

About half of the 500 bikes the organization took in last year were sold — Davison said WORCA hopes to raise about $15,000 through the swap.

The proceeds help to build trails, and Davison encouraged WORCA members to also purchase a $10 trail pass with their memberships to help facilitate better trails.

"We really appreciate anyone to uses the swap to sell and buy their bikes because it helps us raise money for trails," she said. "(The membership fee) certainly doesn't cover trail building, and only a very small amount of trail maintenance.

"We haven't been putting that word across very well that trails are not covered in the membership and we haven't put the membership (price) up."

Davison also put out a call for volunteers to help on May 1 and 2. About eight "heavy lifters" will be needed on May 1 to help with set-up, while about 25 will be needed between 7:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. on the day of the event.

Those interested can contact Davison at directoratlarge@worca.com to sign up.

"We can probably manage with what we've got, but it would be nice," she said. "Last year, some high school kids came, which was fantastic... there was young muscle."



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