Entering through the doorway from the street is like walking into a doubly-sweet candy store: skateboards on the left side, and bike-stuff on the right.  Pushbike shop has finally opened right on 24th Street, sharing floorspace with Mission Skateboards.

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Kids trickle in and out to have their trucks tightened or to browse the latest magazines and DVDs on the skateboard side of the shop, it was a nice feeling without any pretense – a common complaint with some skate and bikes hops is that they can be a tad prickly and intimidating to customers especially the youngsters, thankfully this was not at all the scene over at Mission Skates where the kids were welcomed and treated to care and help.  We were thrilled to take a field trip to take some photos and learn the story.
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We were greeted with a warm welcome from Ian and Sarah, both spilling smiles all over the place.  If you don’t know much about them here is a very quick bio: Both Sarah and Ian are stars in the courier world, and have each “paid their dues” over the past decade both as messengers as well as racers.  Having won acclaim for first place wins in loads of international races, they have had a chance to scour some unconventional locations for very hard to find bicycle related products from years past.
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For instance – that huge 6-Day Racing poster that hangs behind the counter was scored in the famed town of Gent, which hosts that annual race – the large poster was lovingly saved from the trash-heap, cared for over the years, and finally hangs prominently in the shop.  Glad they saved it from the rubbish bin, it is a most amazing piece of cycling ephemera! They mostly stock bike-gear that serves a purpose and is created in small batches – a noble goal.  You can find new clothing by Swrve, Chuey Brand, and some lesser known companies as well as accessories by Fabric Horse and bags by Freight – everything they stock is made lovingly by hand, by people who ride bikes.  We must say: their selection of stuff is useful and not just “useless trinkets” made for random collections.  Though, if you are into collecting, they do have a few gems in their cases to make you sweat and drool: vintage touring shoes, NOS Dyno BMX shoes, a bevy of caps, vintage jerseys, and the piles will continue to grow as Sarah and Ian uncover more and more neat old relics.  The shop itself reads like an art show with very thoughtful placement and display of the products.

It was very nice to just be inside, the atmosphere of the store really reflects the cycling vibes within our city and elsewhere.  We see the products a lot on the internet but rarely have a chance to hold them in our hands – the fact that a physical shop now exists for these products really is a great resource for our community, not to mention the added value of buying something that was made by hand by someone else who appreciates cycling.  Soon enough the shop will also launch weekly rides, to further bring together our community.
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Of course, we cannot forget to mention Pushbike’s roommate – Mission Skateboards.  It was such a nice feeling to be in the shop and watch the neighborhood outside.  The interaction between the shop and the people who inhabit the area was a very beautiful one – they really do feel like they have been there for a long time, there is an established sense of place and they serve a neighborhood that could use more skate and bicycle shops.  The skate-park around the corner gives the kids something to do, and the shop then provides the kids with the gear and support they need to have their fun.  It is a nice symbiotic relationship, and now there is a bicycle version of it for all of us cyclists to enjoy.

Please go visit the shop, say hello to the owners, and purchase something nice for yourself.  Also, be sure to check out their Grand Opening Event and subsequent Group Rides, once they post the details on their website.

***Editor’s note: Tonight, 5/13/09, there will be a group ride leaving from the Pushbike shop!  Check their blog for details.