Community to welcome Fuller Center cyclists with Friday BBQ | CraigDailyPress.com

Community to welcome Fuller Center cyclists with Friday BBQ

Cyclists will help those in need with home repair projects Saturday

Lauren Blair

More than 20 cyclists will lend a hand on home repair projects throughout Craig this weekend, including installing kitchen cabinetry in the Fuller Center low-income housing project on Yampa Avenue, shown here several years ago. Board president Neil Folks, also pictured here, invites community members to meet the cyclists and learn more about the organization at a BBQ at 6 p.m. Friday at City Park.

Craig will play host this weekend to a hearty and helpful group of cyclists a part of the annual Fuller Center Bicycle Adventure, starting with a community BBQ Friday evening.

Twenty-one cyclists will stop through Craig to fix, clean, build and beautify local homes as part of a coast-to-coast bicycle tour from San Francisco to Savannah, Georgia. The group makes six stops on its cross-country trip and Craig has become a favorite.

"There's usually two things that keep them coming back: one is the hospitality and… two, we give them meaningful projects to work on," said Neil Folks, board president for the Moffat County Fuller Center for Housing.

The cyclists will split up on Saturday to tackle projects at eight properties throughout Craig and surrounding areas, from installing kitchen cabinetry at the Fuller Center's low-income housing project on Yampa Avenue, to painting, seam repair, yard work and even re-oiling a log cabin.

"It's great when we're bringing in outside help and people are willing to help clean up our community," said Mayor John Ponikvar.

The Fuller Center is an international Christian organization whose mission is to eliminate poverty housing worldwide, and seeks to provide families the opportunity to own a simple, decent home through no-interest loans, according to their website.

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In addition to helping communities as they go, bike riders also raise about a dollar per mile for the Fuller Center, said Becky Mitchell, media volunteer for the organization, in an email.

Community members will have the chance to meet and mingle with the cyclists a welcome BBQ at 6 p.m. Friday at City Park. Food will be provided by the Fuller Center and cyclists will each introduce themselves and share a little about their journey.

"That's the cool part about the whole thing is just listening to their stories, they're just a great group to be with," Folks said, adding the age range usually runs the gamut from ages 17 to 80.

The cyclists will be hosted by the United Church of Christ during their stay, and food is being donated by community members as well as Subway, McDonald's and other local restaurants, Folks said.

After a rest day on Sunday, the cyclists will continue their journey eastward, leaving town early Monday morning.