Local bicycle shop The Hub shifts gears
By DAWNE LEIKER
He's on a mission to get folks off the sofa and out into the fresh air, and as new manager of the Hub Bicycle Shop, Mark Dickey is seeing positive results every day.
"If I can change one person, help them extend their life, then it's all been worth it," he said.
The Hub, located at 803 Fort, had its grand re-opening Wednesday, bringing in a steady stream of customers to inspect and test drive the inventory of more than 60 bikes.
Providing a wide selection of bikes, accessories and repair services meets a community need, Dickey said. Looking not only to sell a bike, he said his staff is proactive, working to sell the "right bike to the right customer."
One of the year's best-selling bikes has been the Giant Roam, a cross between a mountain bike and a road bike.
"It's a positive for around here because a lot of people live out in the country and have dirt roads into town," Dickey said. "It's a perfect match for around here."
Dickey began working part-time for the Hub's owner, John Schlitter, in 2009 and assumed the role of manager of the shop in February.
With three part-time sales people/mechanics and a part-time bookkeeper, Dickey is working to ensure full staffing from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays.
Ann Kenyon, who joined the staff as a bookkeeper in February, said store traffic has been on the increase since that time.
"We've heard nothing but positive responses from our customers about the change in management," she said. "Mark has made some wonderful changes.
"We try to help make his vision come true any way we can."
The Hub sells a full line of bicycle accessories, including seats, tubes, tires, hydrator packs, water bottles, handlebar grips, chains, wheels, handlebars, racks, fenders, mirrors and lights.
Bikes range in price from a little more than $200 to $7,000.
"The nice thing is, if you find a bike you want and we don't have it in the shop in the right size, usually it's four days and we'll have it in the shop and put together for you," Dickey said.
Dickey maintains The Hub's website, www.thehubbicycleshop.com, and Facebook page. He also does bicycle restorations and repairs.
"Bring it in," he said. "Let me fix it up.
"Let's get it on the road. Let's get the community healthy again. Your heart rate gets better; your cholesterol. ... Everything gets better if you just get out and get active."