Bend, Oregon has been described as a wonderful, cycling-crazy town. There are many great bike shops and trails, as well as very accomplished racers and riders that call Bend home.
Nestled in the heart of this cycling obsession is Bend Velo, the ultimate bike shop for community involvement. The owner and employees are involved in local cycling ‘politics’ and have been for some time. Whether it’s city meetings, bike advocacy or bike safety classes, the people of Bend Velo are there to make a difference.
In fact, Willow, a Bend Velo bike mechanic and sales person, is a driving force in commuteoptions.org, an organization driven to show people they don’t need to drive to work. And Bend Velo owner, Eric Power, is a very personable guy, quipping, “What do you call it when two guys are on a bike ride?” I reply, “I don’t know” and he says, “a bike race!”
Bend Velo is located in the “Makers District” of Bend. As Eric said, “it’s called the Makers District because things are made here” (it’s an industrial park filled with small manufacturing and such). The shop itself is on the small side, with roughly 40 bikes in stock (mostly for commuters) and various accessories. They have an affinity for bikes with steel frames. Steel is real, as they say.
Bend Velo's team is extremely in tune with their customers, putting forth every effort to provide excellent service and advice in order to create lasting relationships and return customers. “We can’t compete with Amazon and eBay on price, but we can provide an experience that keeps people coming back,” said Eric.
–Billy Brenden, West Coast Marketing Rep
If you are passing through northern Vermont any time in the future, do yourself a favor and stop by the Old Spokes Home. Don’t let the pun fool you, you won’t find endless games of bingo or intense Wheel of Fortune watch parties here. Instead you will come across a very competent bike shop that offers everything from new and used bikes for sale to all the accessories you need on the trail, as well as a service center staffed with friendly faces.
Old Spokes is a unique establishment in that it is a bike shop and a non-profit organization. Old Spokes Home also serves the Burlington community with their Community Workshop as a job training center, and helps provide low-cost bikes to people in need of transportation. Offering workshops and clinics to local youth and riders of all types thanks to a multitude of volunteer hours, the Community Workshop has become a source for bettering the Burlington area one bike at a time.
One of the other unique features of Old Spokes Home is the bicycle museum that resides upstairs. A collection started by Old Spokes original founder Glenn Eames, it spans all the way back to the dawn of cycling and highlights the cycling advancements since then.
Wood spokes, direct-drive, shaft-drive, and any other pioneering feature you might think of are on display here. The collection certainly helps you take a step back and appreciate where bicycles have ended up today, and Old Spokes Home helps you appreciate the potential for bike shop/community relationships in the future.
–Cam Phillips, East Coast Marketing Rep
The real view from the field.