At the Carleton Place council committee of the whole meeting held on Feb 18, local cycling enthusiast and community volunteer Treff Peters gave a presentation on Cycling Without Age, a program he and others are working on to provide seniors with opportunities to enjoy the world of cycling once again. This involves the use of a tri-shaw, a unique cycling creation which has rick-shaw type seating up front for 2 and a single pedal pilot seat for 1 at the rear. By means of electric-assist and low-ratio gearing these tri-shaws can be piloted by almost anyone while carrying 2 adults up front.
The plan of Peters and his group is to eventually obtain a tri-shaw for every nursing home in the county and to organize volunteer pilots to provide rides for the residents. Last year he approached Lanark County council who approved having the county provide liability insurance for pilots and riders. They are now trying to raise funds for to purchase the tri-shaws as well as an enclosed trailer to transport them to different facilities. They were initially shocked at the purchase price from international firms ($15K and up), so they approached a Canadian manufacturer who was more than happy to design and craft their own for about $8,500. Cycling Without Age Lanark County hopes to be able to break down the barriers of isolation that so many seniors suffer from. They have applied for a Carleton Place community enrichment grant this year and councilors seemed supportive of their efforts at the meeting. You can learn more at cwalc.org.