Keeping it Rolling: Viva la Bicycle
Last weekend I followed my own suggestion and tagged along with the wife as we rode the Pacific Electric Trail (PET) out to Rancho Cucamonga. The goal was simple and straightforward - stop at the new repair stand setup and manned by volunteers of Viva la Bicycle. When we arrived, there were four guys there who greeted us and told us what Viva la Bicycle was all about. I was not the least bit surprised to see that Mr. Neiuber - a true advocate, he seems to be involved in every bicycling group in the region. A short while later, the Psycho-list's very own Mr. Mayo rode up to check things out as well. During the time we were there, two riders came in with mechanicals - both of them flats. One of the flats was a simple patch job, the other required a new tube, since the valve stem had been completely sheared off.
Viva la Bicycle is like a pop-up bicycle service station and classroom rolled into one. If you stop by with some little problem, the volunteers will not do the work for you, but they will guide you through the process of fixing what ever it is that ails your bike. Expect to get your hands at least a little dirty. Learning through doing. Practical experience. Those things will keep you riding.
As I mentioned in a previous post, Viva la Bicycle will help you with basic problems - flats, broken chains, snapped cables, gear adjustments. Don't expect to completely overhaul your bike there. The set up is an outgrowth of the well-known Redlands Bicycle Kitchen, and organized under the umbrella of the Inland Empire Biking Alliance (IEBA). They are also partnered with the adjacent Viva la Vegan market. The market is providing storage space for parts and materials; a stage area set into a corner of the old citrus packing house will provide a platform for classes and presentations.
If you possess some knowledge of bicycle repair, Viva la Bicycle is looking for additional volunteers to help out on Saturdays. They can also use any spare parts - I imagine tubes and patch kits are the most often needed. Check them out, and like them on Facebook. Better yet, take an easy spin along the PET some Saturday, and check them out in person. They are friendly and willing to talk about bikes, repairs, and maybe other things. While you are there, check out Viva la Vegan as well - even if vegan is not your taste, they have a good selection of Clif Bars, as well as other energy foods and drinks. Vegetarian shoes and work boots? Find them at the market. A little coffee and cafe is in the works, but not open yet.