They're known as the Bridge House Brats - kids and teenagers from Phoenix who volunteer during the summer to clean up downtown, improve the dock area and even serve coffee and breakfast to tourists passing through. The program has run for 15 years and teens who participate say they're proud of what they've accomplished and look forward to getting together with their friends each day.
"It's a lot better than sitting around your house all day playing video games," said Daniel Frawley. Frawley and other teens come up with projects and activities for the Bridge House Brats.
Frawley and many of the teens who now help lead the Brats started out in the program as kids. Founder Cathy Lee says she's always impressed by the growth she sees in the Bridge House teens each year.
"Their communication skills, they learn a little bit more every year about how to communicate with adults from around the world. We've had two boats this year from France," said Lee.
The teens are well known for letting boating tourists know about local restaurants and delivering food right to the dock.
"When you get it, it's nice and hot. You don't have to wait around for it," said Frawley.
For the past ten years, teens have picked up and delivered food at no charge using three wheel bikes. The bikes were chained up and locked every night but were stolen sometime late last week. The bikes were valued at about $500 each.
Neighbors can't understand why someone would steal from teens volunteering their own time to make phoenix a better place.
"The kids do an unbelievable job. The boaters love the kids, the businesses love the kids - it's a win win," said Tammy Lynch from the nearby State Street Caf.
Since the bikes were stolen the Bridge House Brats have been walking to local shops and restaurants to get food for boaters. Phoenix's hospitality is well known in the boating world and the teens don't want to disappoint their guests."We'll use teamwork and have one person go to one place and one person go to the other that way we don't lose time and the food gets cold," said Tyler Gabriele.
Neighbors have put up a $100 reward for information that leads to the return of the bikes. Anyone with information is asked to call Phoenix Police at (315) 695-2001 or the Bridge House Museum at (315) 695-1308.