Bike share begins in SE

Staff photos by Fritz Busch
Sleepy Eye Medical Center Community Relations Coordinator Mikayla Mages describes the new Bike Share program at Sportsmans Park Monday. Using an automated bicycle check out and return system, the seven-speed bikes are available to rent through the downloadable Movatic Rider app on an iOS or Android device.

Staff photos by Fritz Busch Sleepy Eye Medical Center Community Relations Coordinator Mikayla Mages describes the new Bike Share program at Sportsmans Park Monday. Using an automated bicycle check out and return system, the seven-speed bikes are available to rent through the downloadable Movatic Rider app on an iOS or Android device.

SLEEPY EYE — A new program that promotes physical activity and healthy recreation opened for business on the Sleepy Eye Lake bike trail Monday.

Bike Share, an automated bicycle check out and return system with six seven-speed bicycles, can be found on the bike trail, on a concrete pad just east of the boat launch in Sportsman’s Park.

To check out bikes, users download the Movatic Rider app on an iOS or Android device. The app includes a billing module to collect rider fees via credit or debit card. Fees are $1.50 per bike for one hour and $.50 for each additional half hour of use to cover bike maintenance. Riders will be charged according to the billing plan they choose when registering.

After a bike is selected, riders will use the app to unlock the bike from the rack electronically using their phone’s Bluetooth connection. To return a bike, riders park the bike in an available spot and use the app to lock it electronically.

The bike share idea began at a Sleepy Eye Medical Center (SEMC) Wellness Committee meeting.

“We were brainstorming ways to motivate our own employees to stay active during the spring and summer months. With the bike trail so close to the hospital, it made sense to incorporate biking,” said SEMC Community Relations Coordinator Mikayla Mages.

“Before long, talk of one bike for employees grew to six for the entire community,” Mages said.

Sleepy Eye Medical Center Administration presented the program to the Sleepy Eye Healthcare Foundation Board in March and asked for funding.

“We felt the program fit the mission of the foundation, which is not only to support the needs of the hospital but also enhance the lives of those in the community,” said SEMC Administrator Kevin Sellheim. “Foundation Board members were all on board with this project from the beginning, seeing it as a way to give back to the community and provide another healthy activity option.”

Detailed instructions are available at the bike docking station. Bike helmets can be purchased at SEMC from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday.

Fritz Busch can be emailed at fbusch@nujournal.com.

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