EAST MOLINE, Ill. — The East Moline BMX Speedway is celebrating its 30th season on the tracks.
The attraction has seen bikers of all skill levels and ages.
Track operator, Paul DePauw, has seen the evolution.
"I've seen kids that were 10 years old that are 40 years old now, out here with their kids," he said. "I've seen so many BMXers - I've seen them all in the past 30 years come through the Quad Cities."
As DePauw described, for some racers, it's a family tradition.
Competitors from the local area and beyond came to the track on Saturday, Aug. 20, to prepare for the last state qualifier.
One group included racer Nicholas Nguyen, 41, who was joined by his son and nephew.
"To me, it's time I get to spend with my kids and family and we travel," Nguyen said. "I enjoy watching them and I get to compete with guys my age and level. That's why I do it."
Others like James Eberts, 16, enjoy the fitness and entertainment.
"It's making me happy and keeping me nice and fit, and getting me up every morning to look forward to doing something," Eberts said.
But even at a young age, competition can get fierce.
"The bad thing about BMX is that people talk trash, make you mad, and just make you not wanna do it anymore," said Mikel Barnes, 9.
"A lot of people talk smack about you behind your back," said Thieory Pavelonis, 10.
When asked about how they deal with the issue, Barnes had an elegant solution.
"I just tell them, if they talk trash, I tell them, we'll see about that on the track," Barnes said.
The East Moline BMX Speedway is located next to the Rock Island County Fairgrounds at the corner of Archer Drive and Avenue of the Cities.