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Anderson 209 BMX still on a roll after 10 years

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Anderson 209 BMX still on a roll after 10 years

Cathy Anderson prepares a hot dog for a customer Tuesday at the Manteca Convention and Visitors Bureau Farmers Market at Library Park. The Icee-Anderson's 209 BMX team has been one of the original ...

JASON CAMPBELL/The Bulletin


POSTED July 9, 2009 2:36 a.m.

It’s been a decade since the Anderson’s 209 BMX team finally firing on all cylinders  earned sponsorships from the Icee Corporation as well as local BMX parts fabricator Snap.

And when the chance came to raise a little money for the growing team – which will send Meghan Matthews to Australia this year to compete – they jumped at the chance.

How? Selling hot dogs and snacks at the weekly Manteca Convention and Visitors Bureau Farmers Market and taking their stand to wherever they could help the non-profit offset the costs of operating a team like the one they started.

“When you start thinking about all of the travel and the gear and the entry fees, it gets to be pretty expensive,” said Cathy Anderson – whose husband Jon started the team up after a hiatus from his early BMX racing career. “If we can help get these kids to some of these places, then the work we’re putting in is worth it.”

On Tuesday afternoon, no less than a half-dozen parent volunteers – with their racing children hovering about helping whenever necessary – filled the frozen Cherry Icee drinks and dished out the hot dogs to the hundreds that took advantage of the pleasant weather at the weekly downtown gathering.

It’s a scene that’s become increasingly familiar, and one that has helped the Anderson’s team become the driving force behind the now nearly-complete BMX track situated in the Spreckels Park basin near Moffat Boulevard.

While promoting the track – something that proponents like the Anderson’s say can bring in tax revenue just like the city-sponsored Big League Dreams once they land large regional competitions – wasn’t the initial focus of the fundraising effort, it has become a major source of information for BMX fans eager to get out onto their home track.

“We get people that come by every week asking about when it’s going to be open,” Anderson said. “Right now we’re hoping for a later summer date, and that definitely has people here in this community fired up.”

Especially those who travel throughout Northern California and parts of the Western United States for ABA events because of a lack of adequate race tracks due in large part to closure.

Just last week a massive multi-day event in Roseville drew thousands of people from racers to their parents and family members – all of whom spent money while in town for the weekend.

“That’s money that can be spent right here once we’re up and running,” Anderson said. “People think that BMX is just a bunch of guys riding their bikes around a dirt track, but the reality is that they have to stay somewhere and they have to eat somewhere, and that money would go right back into Manteca – instead of us having to go somewhere else and spend our money there.”

A brief appearance by the Icee mascot was enough to get several young kids worked up about the prospect of having something like that here in Manteca, and talk about BMX riding also got the blood flowing for some of the fathers that have made the sport a true family affair.

“You get out there and start pedaling as hard as you can and you realize that it’s a great cardio workout,” Larry Duarte said while manning the Anderson’s booth. “My wife definitely loves that part of it, and it’s fun for us older guys as well.”

For more information about the Anderson’s BMX team visit their website at www.andersons209bmx.com. 

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