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The annual Bites, Bikes and Bison event raised over $6,000 for the Pioneers Park Nature Center despite taking place on one of the hottest days of the summer June 29 at Pioneers Park.

The event included three bike routes – 17, 11 and 4 miles – some of which stopped at White Elm Brewing Co. for discounted drink specials. The 17-mile route also included a stop at Method Cycles and Craft House.

At the Nature Center, cyclists found a variety of food, health and outdoor-related vendors, yard games, indoor and outdoor activities for families, and an air-conditioned yoga session offered in the Prairie Building.

Participants also had an opportunity to see progress on construction of a new, large deck on the Prairie Building, which is scheduled to be completed in August.

“We are still waiting on the roof, railings and lighting,” said Andrea Faas, Nature Center coordinator. “It is a huge deck and improvement for people accessing the building.”

The deck will meet ADA standards for accessible design, from the loading zone along the road all the way to the main doors, making it more accessible for visitors, rental users and delivery people, Faas said.

“We use this deck daily for the preschool program, and in the fall school hikes gather there,” she added. “It will be wonderful to have some covered space to protect from the elements but still allow people to be connected to the environment. Several memorial benches will also be on the deck, and those are available through the Parks Foundation.”

The annual Bites, Bikes and Bison fundraiser is coordinated by Friends of the Pioneers Park Nature Center to support outdoor educational programming and Nature Center projects.

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L Magazine editor

Mark Schwaninger is L magazine and Neighborhood Extra editor.

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