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Boreal Community Media

Joynes Ben Franklin in Grand Marais donates 75 helmets and other bike supplies for the Kid's Bike Safety Rodeo event

May 25, 2023 08:51AM ● By Content Editor
Photo: Danny Nee

By Laura Durenberger-Grunow - Boreal Community Media - May 25, 2023


Many of us remember biking, skating, or rolling as a kid - and the popularity of those activities hasn’t waned. 

According to a study by John Hopkins Medicine, “Over 70 percent of children between the ages of 5 and 14 ride bicycles. In-line skating and skateboarding are also very popular among this age group.” Using a scooter or rolling in a wheelchair can also be added to this list. 

Of that 70% who bike, 55% don’t always wear a helmet which can lead to head injuries or head trauma if involved in a crash.

Tyler Dean, co-owner (along with his wife Jessica Dean) of Joynes Ben Franklin in Grand Marais, said “I grew up biking all around town during the summer and have so many fond memories of doing so.”

Tyler and Jessica have a passion for encouraging kids to get outside and recreate safely. 

That’s why they’ve donated 75 Quality Helmets, 60 Rear LED Lights, and Maintenance Equipment (bike stands, chain lube, etc., to use to tune up bikes) for the Cook County Kid's Bike Safety Rodeo on May 25, 2023.

According to Kristina Mattson, Cook County Statewide Health Improvement Partnership Coordinator, a bike safety rodeo is: 

“...a skill-building obstacle course developed for the purpose of teaching children basic bicycle riding skills like stopping, balancing, signaling, and turning. These events provide an opportunity for bicyclists to practice and develop effective cycling skills and avoid typical crashes.”

Bike maintenance stations will also be on-site for kids and adults to get their bikes tuned up. (Don’t have a bike, or don’t want to bring your own? You can borrow one from the Cook County Bike Fleet to practice on.)

The Deans and SHIP decided to partner for the Bike Rodeo - a move that stemmed from the 2022 Lutsen 99er. It was at this event that Joynes Ben Franklin was on site selling Darn Tough Socks. All of the proceeds Joynes made from the sock sales went back to the local community (with a focus on youth organizations).

Related: Lutsen 99er organizers announce change in bike race host

“My wife Jessica and I really have a heart to give back to this wonderful community that has supported and given us so much, especially in the past 3 years.

Dean specifically referenced the fire at White Pine North and becoming the proud owners of Joynes Ben Franklin in 2022, as examples of the community support he and Jessica received.

This year, the Deans knew they wanted to continue giving back, and another partnership opened up new possibilities. 

For the 2023 Lutsen 99er, Joynes Ben Franklin partnered with Darn Tough Socks who donated socks for the event. This donation opened up the option for the Deans to purchase helmets to give away at the Bike Rodeo. 

But the community involvement didn't stop there. 

Tyler shared that Spokengear Bike Shop in Two Harbors sold the Deans the bike helmets at cost so they could make their donation go further. 

The helmets and reflective lights will be distributed at the Bike Safety Rodeo event on Thursday, May 25, 2023, from 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm, or until supplies run out. 

Mattson says that they are still in need of volunteers for the event. If you’re interested in volunteering, contact Kristina Mattson at 218-302-1342 or [email protected]

Additionally, you can come to the event and ask where help is needed. No prior training is required, and instructions will be provided.

When asked if there was anything else he’d like to add, Tyler gave a shoutout to Darn Tough Socks, noting that they are made in the USA, are a family-owned business, and that they are the #1 hike/trek sock on the market - with a lifetime guarantee. 

“Joynes Ben Franklin has a very large selection. If you've never tried them, you're definitely missing out,” he said with a smile. 

The Kid’s Bike Safety Rodeo will take place at the Cook County Community Center on Thursday, May 25, 2023 from 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm. 

A waiver is required for kids who are participating. You can find the waiver via the PDF below, although there will be some available at the event. 

Tyler and Jessica Dean have co-owned Joynes Ben Franklin - a Grand Marais staple - since January 1, 2022. You can learn more about the store here: http://joynesdeptstore.com/