May 2009


We bike to work every day.  Unless we walk or cross country ski, but those days are few and far between.  We are not alone, there are lots of people out there like us.  So Bike to Work Week is sort of ho-hum or business as usual for the year-round bike commuter.  But it can still be exciting!  Cody and I have organized some of the local events in the past few years which kept our heart rates high but now sponsoring is our thrill .  So this week we get to bike to Bike to Work Week events and just hang out.  It is fun.

Yesterday we hit the Bike Way.  Cody was interviewed for the news.  Yeah Cody!

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We had great weather and a good sized group for the official ride.

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The park was hopping all afternoon.  There were prizes and an ice cream truck and a gear swap and a spontaneous unicycle demonstration.  I used the Bikes at Work trailer to lug a table and chair over so while Cody worked the shop I hung out in the park and scored a saddle at the gear swap off the exec director of the IBC.

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This morning was the commuter breakfast at College Green Park.  This event was my baby for 2 years and it is one of my favorite events of Bike to Work Week.  Lots of people came out and once again we had great weather.  I had a good long conversation with JCCOG planner Kris Ackerson about the Dirty Kanza 200.  He was going to do it this year but has had some knee trouble so his brother is going to take his place.  I wish him luck and if Kris does it next year I hope to be out there with him.

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Today the shop is closed so we took advantage of our schedule and went to the noon-time Bicycle Friendly Forum at the Library.  The aforementioned JCCOG planner, Kris, led us through the Metro Bicycle Master Plan, which is set for final release in June.  Cody and I have been to a couple of meetings regarding the Plan and it was good to get an update.  Sharrows are coming to Iowa City!

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The discussion after the presentation was good and it was nice to see 20 people or so there in the middle of the day.

Tomorrow is another commuter breakfast, this time on Melrose Avenue at Kinnick Stadium, stop by between 7 and 9 if you can.  We will be there and are bringing a special guest!  Terribly mysterious…

Yesterday we opened with a flourish!  There was a bit of nerves before.  What if nobody came?  What if too many people came?  What if the weather was grumpy?  As it turned out things were about as perfect as they could be for us.

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We had a good steady flow of customers and still had a few quieter moments to be able to take a few pictures and enjoy the music.  Ira’s famous brother Dustin and company (I feel terrible, I don’t know the name of the band but that is Josh on drums and Kelly on banjo and vocals) put on a great show and the cops never came to shut it all down so that was a bonus.

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We even had a Grand Opening banner!  Won’t be needing that again so if anyone out there is thinking about opening a business in the future we can hook you up.

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Thanks to everyone who came in, the band for playing, Jen for the faboo cupcakes, Mauro for the photos and the bread, and Lisa for the tofu chocolate pie!

No rest for the weary now, it is big chainring ahead into Bike to Work Week.  Cody and I have done our share of organizing events over the past years, this time we are just proud sponsors and happy participants.  All week if you ride to our shop we will give you a ticket to enter you in the Friday prize drawing.

Today is The Bike Way and we will be down at College Green Park all afternoon.  Tomorrow morning breakfast and Tuesday, too.  Wednesday night is the Mayor’s ride.  We will be closing the shop a bit early that day so we can ride, some folks are going to meet here before so we can all ride over together.  Feel free to join us, the full schedule of events can be found at the official website.  Hope to see you at the events but more importantly, we hope to see you Biking To Work!

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Today we got our first shipment of Arkel bags.  They are really nice.  I have been using the

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T-28′s (the blue ones) for a couple of years now and they are great.  First up, the Arkel locking system keeps the bags right where you put them – on your rack.  I don’t think the bags could come off unless your whole rack flew off your bike.  But they are very easy to put on and take off.  Amazing!  They are also super tough and the ones I have been using are a little faded maybe but they basically seem new.  Don’t just take it from me, for I am not alone, these bags will get you Out There as far as you want to go.

In other intrepid two wheeled travel news, Trans-Iowa is tomorrow.  For those of you unfamiliar with this, I invite you to read my terribly long explanation.  So long it needed its own webpage!  I have happily sworn off the event, and will be happily sleeping when it begins until the cats start pawing at my face, but then after they are let out I will go happily back to sleep.

Anyway, one of the Nice participants, Dave, and one of his Pals, who is promoting the spectacle and is, coincidentally, also named Dave stopped into the shop yesterday.

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They showed off their rigs and we talked bikes and bikes and long rides.  This is one of the best parts about owning a bike shop.

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We talked Tom Teesdale.

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We talked Vassago.  You can type Vassago almost entirely left handed!

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We talked Odyssey Twister pedals, which we will have in stock next week.

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Good luck to Dave & Dave & Ari & Steve & Paul and everyone else Out There this weekend!  Cody & I will be In The Shop, 10 – 4 Saturday, 1 – 4 Sunday.

You can follow Dave’s progress here if he turns on his SPOT.

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