We wanted to learn a little bit more about the community surrounding Brooklyn Bicycle Co. bikes, so we created a section of our journal dedicated to some of the people we’ve been fortunate to call our customers.
Each month we feature a different member of the Brooklyn Bicycle Co. community and share what makes them tick.
Read on to learn about the most recent member of our community spotlight...
Where is Local Hub Bicycle Co. located and explain some of your favorite things about the community surrounding your shop?
Local Hub is located in the Deep Ellum neighborhood of Dallas, directly on a major cycling thoroughfare that takes cyclists to and from Downtown to East Dallas. One of the first commercial districts for African-Americans and European immigrants, Deep Ellum is one of the most historically significant neighborhoods in the city. The district boasts the city's largest collection of commercial storefronts from the early 20th century and includes many individual structures significant in their own right. Currently, the neighborhood is now the entertainment district in urban Dallas where the cities best restaurants and bars are located. Deep Ellum is a come-as-you-are kind of neighborhood. You don’t have to be anything other than who you are. That’s probably why I get away with guerrilla bike infrastructure projects. I’m a couple bike racks away from wearing out asking for forgiveness.
Tell us about Local Hub. How did you get started and what drew you into the bike industry?
The concept for Local Hub was hatched in 2014. I was living in New York City at the time commuting to work by bike and riding long distance rides on the weekends. My father passed away and I quit the full job I had for 9 years. Feeling a little lost, I took a 6 week trip to Southeast Asia and Europe to figure out the next step in my career. While traveling coast to coast through Ireland, my friend who had flown from Dallas to travel with me, brought up the idea of opening a bike shop. We talked about it for a few minutes then went back to drinking our Guinness.
When I got back to New York, my friend messaged me about the shop to see if I would be interested in partnering with him. I didn’t hesitate and we went to work on writing the business plan and setting a timeline for getting open. I moved back to Dallas November 2014. We opened our doors almost a year later on December 21st, 2015. It’s funny to look back at the pictures from when we opened. We only had about 10 bikes and nothing on the walls. So much has changed in those 2 years.
I opened the shop in Dallas because I knew I could have a bigger impact on the bike community. New York had a ton of shops that were already serving cyclists who rode for transportation. I saw a gap in what Dallas was offering and knew that my concept could fill it.
What makes Local Hub unique?
We make bike ownership approachable. Local Hub staff is majority women, which is way outside the industry norm. My staff takes the time to walk a customer through the process of buying and owning a bike without judgment. We want people of all shapes, sizes, and colors to feel comfortable shopping for whatever they need to get set up on a bike, and not feel intimated when they bring in their bike for service. Local Hub stocks affordable bikes that are well made and attractive. I think that’s the reason we have a lot of first time bike owners. They know they can come to the shop and find something in their budget and leave feeling proud about their purchase. We document almost everyone that buys a bike from us by posting a new bike day picture on social media. The smiles are inspiring and it’s what keeps us working so hard for the bike community.
How is your shop involved in your local community? Do you offer community impact programs and/or events for local residents?
One of the core values of Local Hub is community. The shop was founded on the idea of being more than just a business. We are the hub of our community and we give back as much as we can. We spend a lot of time advocating for better bike infrastructure and working on projects that make Dallas a better place to live. One of my favorite projects last year was facilitating the building of a book bike for the Downtown Dallas Public Library. It’s a pedal powered literacy machine that brings books to people that normally wouldn’t have a chance to get to the library. The 1st on street bike corral in Dallas was just installed in front of Local Hub. I worked with the city for 3 years to get it installed. After sending an email at least once a week for the past 6 months, it finally happened. And, there’s been bikes parked on it ever since. It has a direct economic impact on Deep Ellum by allowing more people to access the neighborhood to support local businesses.
We host bike events throughout the year including Cranksgiving, movie screenings, organized group rides, MS150 training team rides, and free bike maintenance classes.
Cranksgiving Group Photo by Sheryl Lanzel
What are some stereotypes you are hoping to help break in the bike industry?
I’ve lost count of how many times people ask where my husband is or if I ride bikes. I’m not married and no longer have a business partner for the record. People assume because I’m a female in a male-dominated industry someone else must be making decisions for the business. The best way to break that stereotype is to show up and make a seat for myself at the table. If we want the industry to change, we have to be the change. The only way to do that is to take on leadership roles and be the decision-makers.
Run us through your perfect Dallas weekend.
I don’t get a lot of weekends off. If I did, I’d spend them all outdoors. The weekend would include a long gravel ride and mountain bike ride. I’d convince everyone to finish the rides at local breweries where we can relax and catch up on life.
Share something that you are really excited about right now.
I’m excited about working on bikes! I was awarded the 2018 QBP Women’s Bike Mechanic Scholarship along with 31 other FTW across the United States. The scholarship allowed me to attend a two week professional bike mechanic program at United Bicycle Institute in Ashland, OR. Those two weeks were just as hard as they were rewarding. Class was Monday-Friday from 8 am-5 pm with panel discussions and after-hour work time that didn’t allow for much free time. I walked away with confidence that I didn’t have before, and friends that I will have for life. While I own a bike shop, I don’t work on bikes. I do everything else, and have always been intimated by all the tools. When my service department manager says he wants to show me how to do something, I now jump at the chance to learn more instead of hiding. Having that knowledge makes me a better business owner and a better community member.
Local Hub Bicycle Co.
2633 Main Street #130
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