MEIGS COUNTY — As the leaves fall and the air becomes crisp, The Meigs County District Public Library hopes to remind the public that their new bike rental program, “Book a Bike,” is a year-round program in which residents who have a library card may borrow one of ten bikes found at either library for a total of three hours per day. Five bikes, purchased courtesy of the Athens Bike Shop, can be found in Middleport, the other five in Pomeroy. Anyone renting a bike at one library may return it to the same library or the other library when they are finished.
“We just want (people) to know that they’re here and that it’s easy to once you get the initial paperwork done,” Kristi Eblin, library director, said. “To me, I think it would be a fun activity if you have kids a family with 10 to 12 year old. Park car at the library, take the bikes uptown have a little playtime at the park in Minersville, or sit along the benches and watch the boats go by, or throw a book in the basket.”
Library Assistant Director Chelsea Poole shared the same sentiment.
“It’s a little fun family outing courtesy of the library and the health department,” she said.
The bike rental program is through the Together on Diabetes grant through Marshall University and procured by the Meigs County Health Department.
For security purposes, anyone participating in this program will need to sign a consent form which will go one file, and those who have a driver’s license will also need to provide it to the library so that a copy can be made. Bikes must also be returned within one half hour of the library closing. For the Middleport Library Monday through Saturday, bikes must be returned by 5:30 p.m. For the Pomeroy Library Monday through Friday, bikes must be returned by 7:30 p.m. and during Pomeroy Library’s Sunday hours bikes must be returned by 4:30 p.m.
Any children ages zero-11 must have a parent or guardian present when borrowing bikes. Anyone ages 12-17 may borrow bikes without an adult present, but must have a parent or guardian’s signed consent form on file.
Statistics from odometers on the bikes show that from Aug. 10 through Aug. 31 the bikes were used 17 times for a total of 89 miles, or about 5 miles per person.
Laura Cleland, grant coordinator at the Meigs County Health Department, said this is a great start.
“If you’re looking, this is the tenth through the thirty first,” she said. “Seventeen people rented in 21 days; that’s almost a bike a day.”
She also said she’s curious to see what numbers September holds, as August is also busy with the Meigs County Fair and the return of the school year.
“I think it was a very good start and very successful to get the program going,” she said.
Cleland also said the bike program is good for riders of any age.
“It’s a very low impact low stress on your body way to exercise,” she said. “So that was one of our goals was to have a fun and a way to get some exercise in.”
For more information, call the Pomeroy Public Library at 740-992-5813 or the Middleport Library at 740-992-5713.
Reach Lindsay Kriz at 740-992-2155 EXT. 2555