April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month and a few local organizations are teaming up to show community support for that message.
"The message of the whole event is that we're a community that cares about kids," said Val Widmer, director of Emma's House in Hamilton.
This Saturday, with the help of Ravalli County 4-H and the Ravalli County Extension Office, Emma's House is sponsoring the I Care About Kids Brigade - a two-pronged event aimed at showing the community's solidarity on issues of child abuse.
The event begins with a six-mile bike ride from Emma's House to Corvallis High School. There, riders will meet up with over 300 kids and the whole group will walk a quarter-mile loop, en mass, along U.S. Highway 93 and through Corvallis' downtown, ending back at the high school with free ice cream sundaes for all.
Participants are encouraged to wear white shirts to show their support.
"We're hoping to make a visual impact," said Widmer. "Child abuse is a community issue. So, we just want to make the statement that, in Ravalli County, we care about our kids."
Shuttles will be available to ferry bikes and riders back to Emma's House at the end of the event.
The bike ride will depart Emma's House (800 N. Second St. in Hamilton) at 5:30 p.m. and the walk through Corvallis will start at about 6:45 p.m.
Riders will use the U.S. Highway 93 bike path to ride to Corvallis.
There will be a shorter bike ride portion for younger children which will meet at the Woodside Cutoff, east of Corvallis, at 6 p.m. That ride is about two miles in distance.
Opened in 2006, Emma's House is a children's advocacy center where young abuse victims can meet with investigators, case-management workers and other professionals in a safe and comfortable setting.
All are welcome to participate in Saturday's events. For more information, contact Val Widmer at 531-8845.
Reporter Will Moss can be reached at 363-3300 or email@example.com