Another Portage grassroots fundraiser and favorite of local residents returns next month after the two-year COVID hiatus. The Firefighters Burn Fund Bike Auction takes place on Saturday, May 7 at 10:00 a.m.
Firefighter Curtis Rance says he is standing at the usual location – the Portage Fire Hall at 124 3rd St Northeast.
“What the Burn Fund does is help raise money for education and equipment for the burn unit in Winnipeg,” Rance explains. “This will be the 42nd annual bike auction. We’ve missed the last two years due to COVID, but hope to have a good turnout this year again in our comeback year, and hope to see lots of people out.”
Rance explains that they have held another form of auction over the past two years. The fire station donated 39 bicycles for adults and children to Big Brothers Big Sisters, the ROK program, the Portage School Division outreach programs which are at PCI, Arthur Meighen and Crescentview, and the Bear Clan. And then the rest of the bikes were on display in front of the fire station for people to pick up a bike of their choice and donate if they wanted.
“But we’re going back to our original process and we’re hoping to see a lot of people come out,” Rance continues. “Our social club is looking forward to resuming our regular events. We also do the car wash and we manage the booth at the Portage Fair.”
You can donate a bike for the auction by bringing it to the fire station where they will receive it, or you can call (204) 239-8340 and leave a bike with them and they will set you up a time to bring him down.
“If you’re looking to buy a bike, viewing opens at 9 a.m.,” Rance says. “You can go down, take a look, find the ones you like, and then it’s just like any other auction. You wait for your item to go on sale and bid with other people. These are bikes that were either recovered from a theft or they were lost and found around town and no one came to claim them, so we’re selling them for cash for a good cause.”
Rance says they have about 70 at auction this year, noting that the numbers are down a bit from previous years.
“Hopefully it doesn’t affect us too much,” Rance continues. “Usually we have around 125 to 150 bikes a year.”