[Source: Emily Gersema, azcentral.com]
A new set of wheels is hitting the pavement in downtown Phoenix.
The Barrio Bike Shop, a business that is part of the Neighborhood Ministries campus at 19th Avenue and Van Buren Street, has launched its own beach cruiser, the Barrio Bike, to sell.
Mayor Phil Gordon is one of the first people in line for a Barrio Bike.
Proceeds support the ministries, a Christian charity that offers services including health care, after-school programs and job training.
The charity has been largely dependent on individual donations. The ministries’ executive director, Kit Danley, said she hopes that Barrio Bike Shop and other businesses at the main campus, including a T-shirt silk screener, can enable its programs to become more self-sustaining.
Barrio Bike Shop is one of two parts of the Barrio Bikes program that work in tandem.
The shop sells used and refurbished bicycles for children and adults, while the other arm, Barrio Works, teaches repair and refurbishing skills to children, teens and adults.
Chris Williams, the Barrio Bikes coordinator who leads the bike-repair classes, said he is working with a New York bicycle manufacturer, Worksman Cycles, to get the Barrio beach cruiser business off the ground.
He has a particular group of customers that he’d like to reach this fall.
“It’d kind of be a beach-cruiser bike for the downtown college kids,” Williams, 29, said.
The beach cruiser is a heavy-duty bicycle that is recognized for its fat balloon tires and thick frame.
Williams wants to find a retail space near the downtown Phoenix campuses of Arizona State University and the University of Arizona medical school to sell Barrio Bikes, but he acknowledges resources for the charity-hosted bike shop are limited.
Orders can be placed with Williams at 602-889-1378 or email@example.com.