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This is a photo of a Pedal Pub, a multi-passenger bike that serves as a mobile bar. One will be coming to the Quad-Cities Friday, Aug. 30.

CHEERS to Pedal Pub Quad-Cities, a cool addition to our community's collective and evolving vibrant river-town vibe.

If you were in downtown Moline Friday, you already may have caught a glimpse of one of the 16-passenger bikes now serving as mobile bars and rider-powered pub-crawl conveyances in the Quad-Cites.

Those party bikes also are expected to be pedaling in Rock Island and Davenport, as Augustana College grads Darien Marion-Burton and Taveres Williams develop an exciting concept we hope will grow local businesses and the Quad-Cities' reputation as a tourism destination.

“Our experience is a hybrid of a pub crawl, sightseeing tour and exercise; it is truly unique," Marion-Burton explained. And Dave Herrell, Visit Quad Cites CEO, called it "a fun, new amenity to get people out into our downtowns," and a great fit for the fledgling QC Ale Trail spotlighting local craft brewers. "Any time you've got entrepreneurial concepts, doing things that are fun, creative and new, certainly that adds excitement to the destination," he said.

To find out how to book a bike or tour (with or without alcohol) or become one of the company's "Beerless Leaders" (the pilots hired to steer the pub and work the brakes and the crowd) visit https://www.pedalpub.com/quad-cities-il/ or https://www.facebook.com/pedalpubquadcities/.

CHEERS to all those providing us with an appetizing menu chock full of high school sports to crowd our fall calendars. Today, for example, we celebrate that the Friday night lights are blazing at many area schools.

But football players aren't the only talented student-athletes testing their skills on the field of play this fall. So please join us in the cheering section for the schools, coaches, parents, and especially the young athletes, who bring us the excitement and entertainment of fall prep sports, including cross country, boys' golf, girls' tennis and volleyball, and, of course, football.

CHEERS to the campaign to double the size of the Mercer County Family YMCA in Aledo, and the generosity of donors who have pledged $2.7 million in less than a year for the $4 million project.

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That leaves just $1.3 million to be raised for a major overhaul of a center built in 1992. “We are one of the smallest YMCAs in the country that’s independent," CEO Sarah Brown said. "This is a big deal."

It is, and not just for the YMCA, but for the community. The plan is designed to deliver on the results of a 2016 survey that asked county residents this critical question: "What services do you think aren't met in Mercer County?"

The resulting project was created to serve a wide range of groups and needs, and the response by hardworking volunteers and generous donors demonstrated an impressive community buy-in for the project even before the fundraising campaign held its official kickoff last week.

"This has moved pretty quickly," Brown said. "This is the best thing that's happened to Mercer County, and I am so happy to be a part of this program."

You can be, too, by giving generously, including by sending your donations to Mercer County YMCA, 401 S.W. 2nd Ave. Aledo, IL 61231.

CHEERS to Moline-Coal Valley School District for scheduling a series of  “conversation meetings.” We urge parents, students, and residents who have ideas to continue to improve the schools and the district to seize the opportunity to visit with board members and first-year superintendent Rachel Savage at the following locations and times:

  • 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. Sept. 5, Hy-Vee Club Room, 750 42nd Ave. Drive, Moline.
  • 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Oct. 1, Boys and Girls Club Moline Teen Center, 1122 5th Ave., Moline.
  • 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. March 3, YMCA’s Spirit, Mind and Body Center, 1811 53rd St., Moline. This is the former Union Congregational Church, located across from the YMCA.
  • Noon to 1 p.m. April 7, the Java Lab, Moline Public Library, 3210 41st St., Moline.
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