PAOLA — Before Sunflower Elementary students kicked off their summer break, they were given the opportunity to participate in an all-school bike ride.

The event took place in May on National Bike to School Day.

Although the event was fun, it was more than just a leisurely joy ride. The students were culminating a unit during which they participated in a poster contest, learned about bicycle safety and raised money for Type 1 diabetes research.

Before their big bike ride, there was an all-school assembly featuring Kent Schnakenberg of Team Schnak Cycling. Schnakenberg talked about bicycle safety and the importance of Type 1 diabetes research.

Many of the students were wearing Team Schnak shirts given out at last year’s event.

New bikes also were given to a couple of lucky students thanks to donations from Walmart and the Paola Optimist Club. The winners were Chase Wickham and Olivia Israel.

Editor and Publisher Brian McCauley can be reached at (913) 294-2311 or

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