Youth ATVs - pass them on
One of the meanest pranks I ever pulled on my older brother was telling him that our parents bought him an ATV for his birthday. If my memory serves, I was 7 years old. My brother, Dan, was just about to enter his teen years. I can still picture his excitement. He was jumping up and down and cheering. After I saw his delight, I felt terrible while disclosing my secret. I was kidding – they never bought him an ATV. OK, maybe I didn’t feel terrible. I was his younger sister. I had plenty of reasons to seek revenge. I still owe my brother an apology. Dan, I am sorry I lied about you getting that ATV when we were younger.
Sure, my brother and I had a fantastic childhood, but an ATV was just not a feasible birthday present. Our parents couldn't swing that kind of gift. That’s why many parents are using Craigslist and classified ads to buy used gear at an affordable price.
My two young neighbors were more fortunate than my brother and I. Matthew Loughney, 7, and his brother, Sean Loughney, 11, just received their dream gift. The Polaris ATV was a 90cc two-wheel drive model. “I tried purchasing off of Craigslist before, but they always go so quickly,” said John Loughney, their father. “We were lucky to get this one used from my brother-in-law, Tony.”
All day long there were buzzing noises coming from my neighbor’s yard. I think the only time they shut down the ATV was during lunch. Santa Claus might have trouble trumping this present. Their father made sure to enforce safety rules with both boys. Many youth model ATVs have governors (speed restrictors) to keep them safe. “They must wear helmets at all times,” said John.
Here are a few safety rules for small ATVs. Driving on public land is OK as long as you follow the rules, but kids should never use ATVs on frozen waters. On public land, youths must be accompanied by a parent (uncles, aunts and extended family does not count). Youths may operate on private land without supervision, but they must be under the management and control of their immediate family. Once a youth turns 12, the rules change and riders must possess a valid ATV safety certificate. Please visit this link for detailed ATV laws. http://dnr.wi.gov/org/es/enforcement/docs/atvregs.pdf
Don’t forget to check the classified ads and family members for used ATVs. You may be to afford a youth model ATV after all.