Founded in 2004, Wish for Wheels is determined to make a difference for children by providing new bikes and helmets to kindergarten kids. At our first giveaway, it became clear that the bikes do bring health and happiness into these children’s lives. We are successful thanks to the generosity of friends and neighbors from the community.
- We work with Denver area public elementary schools to focus on the students that will benefit the most from our program.
- We organize bike giveaways (around 300 bikes) annually with the financial and organizational support of community participants.
- We deliver bikes to our selected schools and watch firsthand as the children's faces light up with excitement.
Wish for Wheels is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization serving schools in the Denver Area. All contributions are tax-deductible and make a difference in a child’s life.
Brad Appel, Director of Wheelies
Brad is the brain behind the bike — the one who makes it all happen — the visionary. He founded Wish for Wheels in 2004 and works tirelessly toward our mission of bringing dreams a new set of wheels. According to Brad, Wish for Wheels is special because it allows kids to experience the freedom, independence and success of riding a bike. Bike riding knows no economical or social boundaries. Everyone can ride a bike.
He enjoys mountain and road biking, and bike rides with his two daughters and son. Brad’s favorite movie is Breaking Away – he loves it when the Italians come to town.
“My dad and I rebuilt an old chopper style single speed bike. We took the whole bike apart and repainted the frame, added a glitter banana seat, chopper bars, etc. That was one of my favorite bikes. In elementary school we used to hang out after school, eat Good Humor Ice Cream, and jump our bikes on dirt jumps we would build. The banana seat chopper bike that my dad and I built was an awesome jumping bike.”
Nicole Hebert, Top Banana Seat
Nicole is the Wish for Wheels marketing maven, and her goal is to gain recognition and lots and lots of funds for Wish for Wheels. She is married to her high school sweetheart, and is the mother of two daughters. She loves movies, books and Colorado’s great outdoors.
“Every summer when I was a kid, my friends and I would leave the house early in the morning on our bikes. We’d ride around all day — to the playground, the pool, the baseball field, the mall — wherever we felt like going that day. Bikes gave us freedom and independence, and played a very important part in our formative years. I look back with such warm memories of those days!”
Mike Milstein, Czar of Handlebars
Mike is Wish for Wheels’ legal guy, making sure all those contracts, documents, forms and releases are ready to roll. In his free time, Mike enjoys skiing and backpacking in the Colorado mountains, playing golf, and spending time with his family, friends and his three dogs.
“I can remember, years ago, being strapped into a kiddie-seat precariously mounted above the back tire on my Dad’s bike. I hated it. Taking a ride in that seat terrified me. It was a huge relief to finally get my own bike and learn to ride.”
Bruce Bendell, Chief Bicycle Pump
Bruce is our official Wish for Wheels bean counter — uh — accountant. He handles our budgeting and financial analysis, and prepares our tax returns and filings. In other words, he’s the guy who makes sure we don’t get into trouble with the IRS. Bruce eats ice cream every day of his life (no kidding!), and although he doesn’t have a favorite flavor, he would never turn down a vanilla cone with chocolate sprinkles or soft-serve ice cream served from a Carvel ice cream machine. His favorite movie is Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, his favorite TV show is Sienfeld, and he is an avid golfer and skier.
“For me, learning to ride without training wheels was the most memorable experience on a bike. I remember it as if it happened yesterday. It was a blue Schwinn bike, with a banana seat of course, at the bottom of the hill that my house was on. I remember hitting the curb two times. Then... I just got it! I also remember getting my first ten-speed bike. I must have put 100 or more miles on it the first day I got it.”
Brad Licht, True Spoke
Brad tries to take both road and mountain bike rides four or five days a week with his friends. On the weekend, he always makes time for a ride with his wife and 3 children.
“I am the youngest of five children. When I was a kid, I always got my brothers old bikes. Most of my friends had cool, new bmx bikes. I used to take my hand-me-down bike, remove the fenders and change the banana seat with a 10-speed seat and pretend I had a cool bmx bike like my friends. That is the main reason why Wish for Wheels has such a special place in my heart. It is a pleasure to be able to give a kid a shiny, brand new bike and see their face light up with excitement.”
Zachary Bouck, The Grand Mustache of Handlebars
Zachary is an investment guy, helping people get $$$$. He started riding BMX bikes at age 14, and later found joy in teaching kids to ride bmx while working at a Biking and Skating summer camp in CA over 3 summers. He is also a Certified Bicycle Mechanic, but they won't let him put that on his business card at work. In addition to riding his BMX, Zachary likes camping, fishing, and investing.
“Learning ride a BMX allowed me to make life-long friends, and took me on countless adventures traveling around the US looking for the next great skatepark. I can't imagine a child-hood without a bicycle and the freedom and excitment that came along with it. Wish for wheels gives that freedom and excitement to kids!"