A fitness-themed fundraiser offering fun and fellowship returns to Allegheny RiverTrail Park in Aspinwall April 23.
Spin Your Wheels was created in 2015 by Aspinwall resident and attorney Jennifer Evashavik. She bills it as the “fitness party of the year” and hundreds attend. The family-friendly event offers classes for everyone, at all fitness levels.
“This is an inclusive, 100% no-judgment zone,” Evashavik said. “Our priority is that our classes are fun and our participants have fun.”
The event raised $25,000 in 2019. Evashavik hopes to exceed that amount this year.
“Every year, I’m overwhelmed with the amount of support this event gets from our community,” Evashavik said.
Every year, proceeds from the daylong event benefit Riding for the Handicapped of Western PA, a nonprofit therapeutic horseback riding program for children with special needs, based in McCandless.
T.M. Abbott, director of RHWPA, said she’s “grateful and appreciative — the whole nine yards” for the ongoing donations from Spin Your Wheels.
Abbott said the funds have been used to purchase higher ticket “wish” list items such as an office shed and footing for the arena.
“The best use of the money was for footing comprised of ground-up yoga mats, which is excellent for our horses and our volunteers for walking,” Abbott said. “It retains moisture and keeps the dust down, and that’s a big thing. Without Spin Your Wheels, we would never have been able to do that.”
Evashavik hosted the event virtually for two consecutive years during the pandemic.
Evashavik’s son, Luke, 19, is a dedicated supporter. Nonverbal and with special needs including cerebral palsy, autism and epilepsy, Luke used a Spelling to Communicate laminated board to describe his favorite memory from past Spin Your Wheels.
“I love to see a community rally together to support Spin Your Wheels. It means that you care about me and others like me having a place to go where we can be ourselves,” Luke said. “I’m taking the adapted yoga class because it relaxes me and I get to spend time with my friends.”
Noting the challenges in finding recreational opportunities for Luke, Evashavik said that riding has proved to be ideal, “helping him in endless ways.”
There will be raffles, drinks and food, a DJ, Zumba, yoga, kids classes and free babysitting,
Returning this year is a Mindful Movement class offering accessible yoga.
New classes this year are Joy Riders, with wheelchair bikes, an expanded wellness station, massages, a Q&A with a registered dietitian, free IV drip and vitamin B shots, hair braiding and healthy food options.
Numerous local businesses and restaurants have donated items for raffle.
Sign-ups for all classes are online at spinyourwheels.org.