Tricky bikes popular as kids test balance skills

17:00, Jul 05 2012
Kidzone July 4 2012
Bryher Wilson, 4, tries out her nursing skills in the mini hospital.
Kidzone July 4 2012
Georgie Sunshine, 9, tucks into some toast she painted at Kidzone.
Kidzone July 4 2012
Marieka Tuau-Templeton, 13, takes Rania Tuau-Mataiti, 2, for a ride on one of the unique bikes Kidzone has to offer.
Kidzone 2012
Libby Jeperson, 6, of Winton, on the merry-go-round at ILT Kidzone.
Kidzone 2012
Jack Cream, 4, and Ella Crean, 5, share some candy floss.
Kidzone 2012
Paige Henderson, 5, plays with the bubble wands.
Kidzone 2012
Shishonee Lang, 8 of Invercargill, decorates her biscuit at Kidzone.
Kidzone 2012
Jed Madden, 4, fills up Isabella Rhind's car at Kidzone Festival 2012. Isabella is also 4.
Kidzone 2012
Greg Dold, 12, tries out a double-decker bike at ILT Kidzone (left) while Jono Dold, 8, and Caden Faulkner, 7, enjoy the bike station.
Southland Times photo
Emily Heald, 9, checks out the dry ice at Kidzone.
Southland Times photo
Tyler McLean, 4, has his face painted by Penny Barnsdale, 16, at ILT Kidzone.
Southland Times photo
Jayden, 7, and Ryan, 6, O'Byrne.
Southland Times photo
From left, Charlie, 5, William, 2, and Lucy, 7, Baynes with their face paint at Kidzone on Sunday.
Southland Times photo
Chloe Plato, 5, and Courtney Hargest, 3.
Southland Times photo
Amber Saul (left) and Brooke Lawry, both aged 11.
Southland Times photo
Four-year-old Hunter Devery (left) and Kea Smith, aged 10.
Southland Times photo
Kenzie Bennett, 5, with Minnie Mouse.
Southland Times photo
Erin Du Plessis, 9, fits the organs into the body.
Southland Times photo
Ciara Hegan, 8, Libby Drummond, 8, and Eilish Hegan, 6, touch up their makeup at Kidzone.
Southland Times photo
From left, Kurtis Orr, 9, Jaydn Gilbert, 9, and Alex Kerr, 9, building a block tower.
Southland Times photo
Charlotte Conner, 8, does some painting.
Southland Times photo
Will Cairns, 5 (left), tries out the face painting while and Mackenzie Forbes-Murch, 9, and her dad Jayden Murch hammer together a little basket.
Southland Times photo
Elise Hampton, 5, with her stained glass butterfly.
Southland Times photo
Paris Stanley, 8, makes a denim note pocket.
Southland Times photo
Oliver Borrie, 6, stains a candle at Kidzone.
Southland Times photo
Jodi Simpson, 8 (left), with her painted face and Isla Hailes, 6, with the puppet she made at Kidzone.

Wacky bikes were a popular choice at ILT Kidzone yesterday, despite the dreary weather.

Hundreds of children turned up for the second day of the holiday festival, many of them heading straight to the bike station for a ride on unusual cycles.

Bikes 4 Fun operator Colin McKenzie said there were 74 bikes at Kidzone, some of them quite bizarre.

Kenzie Bennett
MINNIE FUN: Kenzie Bennett, 5, hangs out with Minnie Mouse at ILT Kidzone yesterday.

There was a modern penny farthing, a bike with a lawnmower attached and another that squirted water when the pedals were pushed.

Operator John Potts said there was even one designed especially for moody teenagers who thought they could do everything.

He said it was so difficult to steer he sometimes offered cash to anyone who could ride it more than 4 metres.

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"It's against all your nature. You can have a stroppy teenager and show them something they can't do."

He said the bike's steering was complicated because the front wheel turned opposite to the handlebars.

Eleven-year-old Mark Gill decided to test himself on the tricky bike, but did not make it far.

"It's hard to balance," Mark said.

Mini golf and face painting were favourite options for children who did not want to play outside, and many were transformed into miniature clowns, superheroes and zoo animals.

ILT Kidzone started yesterday and runs until Monday at James Hargest College senior campus.

The Southland Times