Ever found yourself leaning back in your chair dreaming about how great it would be to open your own bike shop? I know I have. A lot. Bike shops are one of those magical places to me. The second I walk in and smell the rubber, I get excited. That might sounds a little funny, but I know I am not the only one.
There are some bike shops that are more famous than others. Lance Armstrong’s Mellow Johnny’s comes to mind for sure. I’ve never been there, but to me it would be almost like the Mecca of shops. I’d make the pilgrimage to go there and I hope to one day for sure. Here in Edmonton, though none of the shops would be quite as famous as Lance’s, we have a great scene here. I tend to gravitate toward River Valley Cycle. I know the owners, and the staff and the service in there is nothing short of stellar. The guys at Western Cycle, and Red Bike have sure helped me out a time or two with a quick repair, and Revolution Cycle just did some emergency surgery on my Specialized Epic – I blew the rear shock at the Iron Lung XC last weekend.
To me, being able to spend my work days in a bike shop sounds pretty incredible; there just aren’t many things that I like more than bikes. I’d call it a healthy obsession. I know both Ken and I have talked several times about opening one up. In so many ways, it would be a dream come true for a guy like me. That said, starting a retail business can’t be the easiest thing in the world to do. It takes a sound business plan, capital and some luck. Case and point, take Darrin Duhamel, a computer network engineer from Dana Point, California. Here is a link to a great little article about his life shift, from successful corporate 9-5er, to proud owner of Revo Bicycles and Espresso Bar. Dream on, dream on.