Bike bargains support youth programs

DeKALB – DeKalb County Youth Service Bureau is preparing for its 12th annual bike auction on Saturday, May 18.

Registration for bidders begins at 9 a.m. with bidding beginning at 9:30 a.m. at the DeKalb Community Center at 330 Grove St. in DeKalb.

All bikes are inspected by a team of volunteers, who also do minor maintenance like installing or tightening a chain or replacing an inner tube before the sale.

“They are ready to be ridden away,” said Jason Nicol, YSB executive director. “The auctions start at $5.”

Nicol said that some bikes at the auction originally retailed for up to $1,000 and can fetch as much as $300 during bidding, but there will be bikes for all budgets and ages available. He hopes that this year’s auction will yield about $5,000 for YSB programs.

“YSB is a nonprofit counseling organization that specializes in working with the adolescent population,” Nicol said. “Our services are designed to redirect the lives of youths who are at risk.”

As of last week YSB had received 180 bicycles for the auction, and about 75 percent of them are donated by the DeKalb and Sycamore police departments. The remainder are donated by members of the community.

“Usually a citizen will call up and say this bike has been tied to this pole for so many weeks,” said Jim Rhoades, community service officer for the DeKalb Police Department. The police will retrieve and catalog the abandoned bikes, and if no one claims them the bikes are donated.

“We don’t want all these bikes abandoned and sitting around, so we’d rather see them benefit the YSB,” he added.

YSB is still accepting tax-deductible bicycle donations for the auction. Call 815-748-2010 or visit for more information.

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