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Bike The Bridges

May 02, 2016 02:39PM ● By Elena Hutslar

All police officers take an oath to protect and serve. Sergeant Shawn Maples of the El Cerrito Police Department takes serving to the next level with his passion and commitment to the athletes of Special Olympics Northern California. Sergeant Maples and friend and fellow police officer Ian Baisas created Bike to Bridges & Brew as a fundraiser for Special Olympics Northern California. Sergeant Maples was training law enforcement bicycle officers and saw an opportunity with the Benicia and Carquinez bridges when bicycle paths were opened on both bridges. No bike ride event had yet utilized the 25 miles of beauty that was accessible to riders. Bike the Bridges started in 2009 with 100 riders and raised $8,000 dollars, and it has grown to over 500 riders, with hopes of raising over $100,000. Sergeant Maples is so committed to his community and Special Olympics that he has a tattoo on his leg symbolizing his passion for the cause.

The 7th Annual Bike the Bridges and Brew Fest is Sunday, June 12, in Martinez at Waterfront Park. Law enforcement agencies from all over the greater Bay Area gather for this scenic ride. The event is open to the public and anyone can form a team. After completing the route, riders and fans enjoy a craft brew festival, live music and a BBQ lunch. Riders can choose from a 25mile, 50K, 100K, or Century Ride. You can register as an individual rider or as a team at This year, the Brew Fest features ten local craft breweries. Unlimited pour tickets are also available at

Special Olympics Northern California is a free year-round sports training and competition program for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. There are 19,940 athletes who compete in 198 competitions throughout the region in 12 sports. Learn more at: