BMX began during the early 1970s in the United States when children began racing their bicycles on dirt tracks in southern California. Like skateboarding, surfing, snowboarding and Jack Daniels, the Aussies waited for the Americans to mature, tweak and be the general crash test dummies before embracing a new culture in 1975 (even then us southerners let the Queenslanders give it a crack before taking it on).
The year 1985 saw the soil get turned for the Park Orchards BMX track. In true Green Wedge fashion the council decided to reduce, reuse and recycle by building on the old tip. This must have been very handy when a tire was popped, a quick dig of a hole and surely an old tire would’ve been found?
Thirty years later the Park Orchards BMX club has continued to prosper and it has been an exciting year with a large influx of new members joining our existing members to speed their way around the track every second Saturday afternoon for club racing.
Recently the club was very excited to announce the beginning of major refurbishments to the track. Tireless work by the committee led to the securing of a HUGE grant by everybody’s favorite Warrandyte bank, the Warrandyte Community Bank (branch of Bendigo Bank). Manningham council has also jumped on board the reinvigoration train which will see the installation of lights and the asphalting of the berms. This will bring the track up the national standard, allowing our riders to go faster (and safer) and be able to see at night (also safer).
Following on from an exciting Olympic campaign by our Aussie riders in Rio, the club hosted a “Come and Try” day in early September that saw 28 new riders come and try BMX for the first time. Rio Olympian, Bodi Turner, donated his time and expertise on the day to coach our “come and triers”. The club has since convinced Bodi into running coaching sessions every Saturday until the end of the year.
Due to some crappy wisdom that claims “with good must come some bad” the club’s bubble deflated a bit two weeks ago when the clubrooms were broken into. The dastardly thieves took off with four racing bikes. With their energy obviously waning they also rode off into the metaphorical sunset with the canteen’s supply of Mars Bars, Gatorade and Coke.
The Warrandyte community spirit was brought to the fore yet again when in response to people wanting to donate money, a Go Fund Me page was set up. The money that has been donated will enable the club to purchase some new bikes (maybe even a couple of Mars Bars). For that the club says thank you.