20141001_175944On any given day, if you wander into the Lucky Bikes Recyclery,  you may come into a bustle of bicycle business and background noise of eager youth volunteering or you may encounter the eye of the storm – a rare, silent moment on the shop floor. Either way, you are likely to come eye to eye with Maria.
You wouldn’t tell by her disarming smile that she touts a brown belt in Karate, or that she is as fast (or faster) than other youth volunteers on shop bike rides – but she is, and she means business. Maria came to us late last Spring as a school assigned intern from the STRIVE program here in southwest Denver. After her internship ended, she was hooked on the community at Lucky Bikes, and now is a regular fixture here at the shop.
She is most commonly found (wo)manning the cash register, doing merchandising around the shop and is equally capable changing flat tires and wrenching on bikes. However, she is more famously known for a single sale of five bicycles to one customer – a “five birds with
Maria (in the Batman shirt) getting ready to rip on a recent shop ride.
one stone” salesperson, if you will. She confidently approaches potential customers in both English and Spanish, connecting them with their bicycle related needs. Customer service is definitely her gift!
Maria says she loves being at Lucky Bikes for a number of reasons  - it feels like a home away from home, with good company and a fun atmosphere. And we love having her around – she’s such a positive role model for the youth and adults in the shop and she knows her way around the computer system better than some staff! Maria doesn’t expect anything in return for her work – she gives back because it feels right. We sure feel lucky to have someone as talented and selfless as Maria as part of our team!


Get Registered to Ride: Adult Kokopelli Trail Challenge!


An Epic three-day adult mountain bike adventure to Moab, UT, benefiting Trips for Kids Denver/Boulder. 


This is a journey through the lands of the mythical “Kokopelli” or wandering flute player exemplified in Southwest rock art. Our route ranges from singletrack to slickrock, aspens to pinyon pines and offers sights that will wow your senses and terrain that will definitely test your riding skills.

The Kokopelli Trail begins with challenging singletrack, leading to fun, rugged 4 wheel drive trails that touch periodically on the Colorado River. From the Top of the World we descend into Fisher Valley and Onion Creek Canyon, one of the most beautiful and colorful spots in Moab’s Canyon Country

When: September 26-28th

  • Arrive Thursday evening in Fruita,CO September 25
  • Meet at trailhead 7:30 am Friday morning, September 26
  • Return to Fruita (from Moab) on the evening of Sunday, September 28

Where: Fruita, CO – You’ll get shuttled back from Moab, UT at the end of the trip. For a detailed 3 day itinerary, click here.


Why: Each day of the “TFK Challenge Ride” is its own epic ride, testing the endurance of our adult supporters in the same way our programs challenge Denver and Boulder’s underserved youth. The weekend of riding and camping promises to be a fun positive, and personally motivating experience for all. Proceeds from this pledge ride benefit TFKD/B’s cycling based programs that build the health and boost the confidence of over 1,000 underserved youth each year.

The Challenge: Help TFKD/B connect over 1,500 young people with a positive outdoor experience and the joys of mountain biking by joining this annual epic ride! We are challenging participants to raise or donate a minimum of $500 in contributions to TFKD/B.

All TFKD/B Challenge participants will receive a TFK “Ride Leader” jersey, compliments of Primal Wear.

Registration:  $450

Registration includes:

  • Full Vehicle Support for 3 Days/2 Nights
  • Guided and catered tour on Kokopelli Trail with professional guides
  • All meals from breakfast Day 1 to lunch Day 3 (can accommodate special diets with advance notice)
  • All non-alcoholic beverages (plenty of cooler space for folks to bring own alcohol)
  • Camp gear besides tent/bag/pad
  • Shuttle back from Moab to Fruita on Day 3

Registration does not include:

  • Camp gear Rental (tent/bag/pad available for $60 flat rate)
  • Alcohol
  • Transportation to Moab
  • Guide Gratuities

Required Minimum Fundraising commitment:  $500


Questions, contact Dave via email

Buy Your Tickets Now! 2nd Annual Bicycle Benefit: 10 Years of Sunshine



A “Rey” of Sunshine

I can’t think of Lucky Bikes Re-Cyclery (LBR)  or Trips for Kids Denver/Boulder without thinking about Rey.  It is as if he has always been there but truth be told we just met him.  Until this Spring, Rey, by his own admission, spent all of his time inside watching television and playing video games.  Now, he is never inside and he is always on the go.   He volunteers at the shop every day
and is never seen without a smile. Since becoming part of TFK he has built a bike; gone for a mountain bike ride; traveled outside of the city to discover the magic of the mountains and the open space; volunteered at the Mt. Evans Hill Climb and actually raced in the Bannock St. Criterium.   When the shop is closed he goes for a bike ride. While at TFK he fixes bikes, works the register, takes over the Executive Director’s desk and adds joy to everyone’s day.

I sat down with Rey on the rickety picnic table outside the shop and asked him why he has become part of TFK and I was a bit surprised by his answer.  My assumption is that he would say it teaches him a vocation and he did say that but more importantly, Rey told me that it is because it has taught him about respect and integrity.   He feels he treats people better and he thinks more about his actions.  Curious to find out if he was discourteous to others in the past, Rey didn’t think he was but he never thought about it and now he does.  He is learning to be a bicycle mechanic, and the ins/outs of running a bicycle shop and that alone is a tremendous gift to any youth today but to help a young teen learn about kindness to strangers, well, that is priceless.
Rey is already focusing on his next project: building bicycles for his cousins in Mexico.   He feels a bike would be a valuable resource for his cousins in Mexico allowing them mobility and freedom.   His cousins are lucky to be related to someone like Rey.
Trips for Kids was built to aid youth like Rey and get them out on bicycles but do not underestimate the value these kids bring to the table. It is a mutually beneficial relationship.  We all gain from knowing and working with youth like Rey.   He has changed our lives as much as we have changed his.   All because of a bicycle.
Trips for Kids Denver/Boulder celebrates 10 years!

Trips for Kids Denver/Boulder celebrates 10 years!


This was the first photo I ever snapped for TFK and it was magic, capturing the essence of what we do on Oreo’s face. Oreo, in the red, was energetically hooting it up. During lunch, he told me he liked to ride his bmx bike in the city and loved the down hills on his first “real” mountain bike ride

This was the first photo I ever snapped for TFK and it was magic, capturing the essence of what we do on Oreo’s face. Oreo, in the red, was energetically hooting it up. During lunch, he told me he liked to ride his bmx bike in the city and loved the down hills on his first “real” mountain bike ride

Trips for Kids Denver/Boulder has come a long way over ten years. Our first ride was on May 22, 2004 with the Beacon Program from Rishel Middle School. With the support of a crew of my cycling friends, a sprouting list of adventurous volunteers and a borrowed pickup truck, I managed to cobble together enough bikes to have ready in the dusty parking lot of Elk Meadow Park before TFK’s first mountain bike ride. Byron, TFK’s first volunteer, and I were waiting for eight kids from urban Denver to arrive.  Sweating in the sun, I scanned the road below for a van full of youngsters and wondered:  Would the group show?  Could the kids even ride a bike? Would they have fun or would they leave defeated?

The kids did arrive. They arrived with positive attitudes, laughter and an unquenchable thirst for adventure.

They all had a blast on our first, challenging ride, pushing on the uphills and soaring on the downhills – ultimately setting the bar for what was to become our thriving program. Trips for Kids was definitely going to work out!

As the 8 kids from TFK’s first ride departed that afternoon, I started asking a new question, a question I’ve dedicated the last ten years to answering:


How can we share our joy of bicycles and the great outdoors with even more young people? 

Maria, smiling sweetly, took her time at the back with her teacher all day. She told the boys who had to be up front that she had heard and saw a humming bird buzz by.

The first year, with the help of a few cycling friends, we managed to lead 16 rides and expose 116 kids to the magical experience of riding a bike on Colorado’s Front Range. Each year since, we have grown and over ten years our Ride Program has touched 8,000 diverse youth.  Every rider that participates in our program expresses the same awe and delight that Oreo, Maria and their 6 friends did on that very first ride.

We were getting something very right and with the ongoing support of generous individuals like you, we were able to slowly grow and serve more youth in need. Will you continue to support us in serving these youth?

In 2007, we expanded beyond the Ride Program implementing the Earn-a-Bike Program – allowing youth to learn bike maintenance and repair while putting in enough hours to “earn” one of our donated bicycles. Earn-a-Bike youth learn life skills including respect for their environment, problem solving, con­flict resolution, goal persistence, patience, and the meaning of service above self. For our youth, the bike is a mode of transportation and a gateway to fun and enjoyment, but most importantly a metaphor for their lives.

Providing our Ride and Earn-a-Bike programs to youth in need required us to find a consistent, stable source of income. In March of 2013, we launched our nonprofit bike shop, Lucky Bikes Re-cyclery. Lucky Bikes takes bike donations, refurbishes them and resells them within the primarily Spanish speaking community in Southwest Denver. Lucky Bikes serves as a community hub, giving youth something to do outside of school hours and teaching important skills to all members of the community. Proceeds from these sales are used to help fund a portion of our critical programming.

Every week we have a large group of middle school boys that show up at Lucky Bikes and participate in the Earn-a-Bike program in preparation for their summer. Now, they have become a staple of the shop, stopping by every day and asking what they can do to pitch in. They will earn a bike but they’ve also earned a feeling of accomplishment; of pride; and of community. There is no price tag for that.

Our first year we were able to reach 116 youth. Now, with your help, we hope to reach 2000 youth in 2014! With a contribution from you in honor of our 10th anniversary, we can reach this ambitious goal! Please help us celebrate 10 years of smiles on the faces of children with a donation today.

I asked the question 10 years ago: will this work?  Now, I ask the question:  will you join us so we can do more?

Thank you for your role in the success of Trips for Kids over the last 10 years and for your consideration of the next 10 years.   I look forward to hearing from you.

Ride on,


Andrew Goodwillie

Founder, Trips for Kids Denver/Boulder

Every Saturday is Volunteer Day at LBR!

Every Saturday is Volunteer Day at LBR!

lbr volunteer

Join us every Saturday – 10am – 6pm for Volunteer Day at Lucky Bikes.  Help us get the bikes ready!  Your help is needed and appreciated!   Just stop by or email our Program Manager Tania Satchwell with questions!

Lucky Bikes Re-Cyclery Shop Hours

Sunday – 12pm – 5pm
Monday – Closed
Tuesday 10-6pm
Wednesday 10-6pm
Thursday 10-6pm
Friday 10-6pm
Saturday 10-6pm