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A Trike Made for Fishing
Folk art goes for a ride
October 5, 2020

B
icycles are a mainstay of Oriental’s commuter and sailing scene. There’s trike bikes, folding bikes, bicycles for riding around town and bicycles for riding in marathons. Oriental has its own annual biking event: the Thanksgiving Bike Ride. And while bicycles are not an uncommon sight, a bike decorated to its singular purpose is.

A blue Schwinn trike decorated with wooden fish on the basket and front fender, while fish made of copper decorate the wheels. Two fishign poles stick out of the back. The trike rests on the asphalt near a river.
A trike modified – and decorated – for fishing.

Gary Ramsey wanted to bike down to South Ave and Lou Mac Pier to go fishing. But two wheel bicycles don’t have much real estate for fishing poles and gear. So Gary went looking for a trike – a three-wheel version with a basket behind the seat.

Though well suited to his needs, Gary realized he could make the trike more functional. He added a bucket, a table, and two holders for his fishing poles. And inspiration struck. A trike used for fishing, needed a few fish.

Using his wife Carolyn’s Croaker Festival relay trophies as models – a design created by George and Turtle Midyette for the now defunct Croaker Relay – Gary began carving his fish.

Two men in baseball caps and t-shirts stand in a yard holding several flat, carved wooden fish.
Turtle and George Midyette in 2009, with several wooden croakers ready for the relay. Gary Ramsey based his croakers off the Midyettes’ design.

There’s a cutting board behind the seat, but Gary says it’s mostly for changing out lures. “You don’t want fish guts running down onto everything.”

He’s been adding bits and pieces to his work. The fender croaker needed a little something else. With some copper and a metal rivet, the fish now has eyes.

Though his efforts suggest otherwise, Gary doesn’t claim any artistic talent. “It’s just folk art,” he says.

The back basket of the trike has a wooden lid on the basket, carved fish on either side of the lid, fish made of copper decorating the wheels, and a white bucket strapped ont eh back. Two fishing rods jut upward from the back of the basket.A close up of a carved wooden fish. There is a hole for an eye.A flounder, cut from copper, is attached to the spokes.
The trike basket holds Gary’s gear, and his croakers.
Tow fishing rod sit in holders attached to the basket of a trike bike. One has a reel of neon yellow line.
Gary’s modified trike carries all his gear.
The Schwinn name decorates one of the bars. The circular Schwinn logo on a black trike seat.A silver diamond decorates the blue fork on the trike's front wheel.
A blue Schwinn trike is the vehicle for Gary’s creation.
A real fishing lure with a red eye, beige and pink body, and two metal hooks.
A fishing lure – unlike others on the trike, this one is used to catch fish.
The trike handle bars has carved lures with copper hooks dangling from the handles while a carved croaker leaps from the front fender.A closeup of a wooden lure shows copper wires for hooks, an orange-red-black paint job on the lure, and a reflective metal disc at the top of the lure.The eye of the fender fish has a ring of copper held in place with a metal rivet. It's the only fish on the trike with that decoration.
The front of Gary’s trike features a leaping croaker and two distinct lures. The lure hooks are more copper wires – less chance of accidentally hooking his hands that way.
A carved wooden fish painted yellow. A small wooden spoon is attached to the side.
Gary Ramsey and his fishing trike.

Posted Monday October 5, 2020 by Allison DeWeese


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