Thousands of bikes to be given away to needy kids at Mall of America

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What would you do if you won the Guinness World Record for the "Most Bikes Collected in 1 Day"?

If you're an organization called Free Bikes for Kidz (FB4K), the answer is clear – you give them away.

The nonprofit group, which operates in the Twin Cities and Utah, will be handing out the bicycles – which number in the thousands – at the Mall of America (MOA) this weekend, according to their website. 

In an announcement on their site late last month, the organization says they officially earned the nod from Guinness thanks to the 5,512 bikes they collected on a single day in October.

According to a news release received by BringMeTheNews, more than 3,000 of those bikes will be handed out to needy kids and families in the mall's North Atrium from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. this Saturday and Sunday.

Due to limited space, FB4K has already started giving away a portion of the 5,512 bikes, a Mall of America representative told BringMeTheNews. They'll be given to children who will have been pre-selected beforehand.

MOA says the children will also get helmets and "other educational information on living a healthy lifestyle" with the bicycles.

Where do all these bikes come from?

FB4K says they rely on the public to donate "gently used bikes," which thousands of volunteers then clean and refurbish. The group points out that 25 million bicycles are sold in the U.S. annually, and since about a third of those are purchased for children, "8 million bikes are virtually outgrown each year" as kids "grow like weeds."

This leaves an "endless supply," FB4K says.

In its first year, the website says, the group started in a garage and gave away about 250 bikes. That was in 2008. That has grown to five or six thousand per year, and at least 20,000 bicycles have been given out since FB4K was founded.

In Minnesota, the non-profit accepts bike donations at Allina Health hospitals and clinics in the Twin Cities. To learn more about donating or volunteering, click here.

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