Results for tag "bikes"

16 Articles

Bikes Around Town

I always see this one parked behind Simantel in downtown Peoria. Just wanted to say thank you for riding to work and totally dig your bike!

Simantel

88 views

Product Spotlight: Russell’s Cycle & Fitness

RussellsLogoWebRussell’s Cycling & Fitness was established with the aim of promoting a fun and healthy lifestyle through cycling. The mission was to create a welcoming environment where our customers are viewed as close friends.

In August of 1977, Russell’s Cycle World Incorporated was established in Washington, Illinois. It was started in Everett Russell’s garage by his son, Joe Russell. In 1980 the business moved into the building at 308 North Main in Washington and remained there until November of 1994 when it moved for the second time into its present location at #10 Valley Forge Plaza. It now occupies what was the Valley Forge Cinema. This is the most recent, but far from the last chapter in our history.

The bicycle and fitness industries have changed enormously since we began. That usually means a business has to change also. We will never forget how we began. Russell’s Cycle and Fitness began with a passion for bikes, and has grown to a passion for fitness and the outdoors. We never could have come this far without customers who share those same desires. No matter what changes, that fact will always remain the same.

Since our beginning we have seen many exciting changes both in the industry as well as within our own store. Over the years we have occupied three different locations, and in 2007 we proudly became a Giant Retail Partner, but we haven’t forgotten our core beliefs:

HELP OUR CUSTOMERS LEAD BETTER, HEALTHIER LIVES AND TREAT THEM AS OUR FRIENDS.

As we continue our journey to provide you, our customer, the best options for your cycling and fitness needs our passion for cycling, fitness, and the outdoors has only grown deeper. Just like our relationships with you, our customers. Without your loyal support we would not be here today. Thank you for sharing in our dream! This is far from the last chapter in our history and we truly hope you will join us on the ride!

Thank you again! See you on the road!

Joe & Cheryl Russell

Visit Russell’s today online at russellsfitness.com or stop by the store at:

Russell’s Cycling & Fitness Center in Washington, IL
10 Valley Forge Plaza
Washington, IL 61571
Get Directions | Email

309.444.2098
Hours: M & F 9-8, T-Th 9-6, Sat 9-4, Closed Sun
140 views

Kickapoo Fat Tire Festival

The Kickapoo Fat Tire Festival is coming up on August 24-25th. If you haven’t ever taken part in it, or don’t know what it is, the festival is put on by the Kickapoo Mountain Bike Club and is a weekend of fun at the beautiful Kickapoo State Park. There is riding fun for all skill levels.

KMBCFTF

The Kickapoo Super D will take place on Saturday, August 24. For this event we will have race day registration only ($10, open 9:00 am – 11:00 am), so come early!
The race starts at 12:00 pm. We will offer an open class with cash payout.

The Kickapoo XC will take place on Sunday, August 25. We highly recommend that you save $5 by pre-registering. Simply head over to our registration page to register online, or to find our printable form.

  • Race day registration will open at 8:00 am: $35
  • Pre-registration saves you $5! Get your $30 spot by going to our registration page
  • The Novice race at 10:00 am
  • Fatbikes (>3in tires) at 10:05 am
  • Men’s Sport and Men’s Expert at 12:00 pm with a staggered start.
  • All women’s categories will begin at 12:10 am.
  • A free kid’s race, which will take place on the kid’s loop, will begin at 11:30 am.

Each class will race the following:

  • Fatbike: 1 lap
  • Novice: 1 lap
  • Sport: 2 laps
  • Expert: 3 laps

I highly suggest that you go check it out even if you don’t want to ride. For more information visit the event website here.

89 views

Why I Ride

Erik Bike

Post by: Erik Reader, President, Reader Area Development

I have been waiting for the right time to drop my own post on the Bike Peoria site for a while. It’s not that I haven’t had the words, I just haven’t had the time. But isn’t that the age old excuse. For those of you who are unfamiliar, I usually do my blogging over at Reader Area Development dot com. Sure, that’s some shameless self-promotion for myself, but what the hell, I’m an administrator on this site as well.

Like most, I grew up riding my bike around the neighborhood after school just to be outside playing. That evolved into riding to school, downtown, to baseball practice, a friend’s house, or wherever my legs could motor me. Somewhere around that pivotal age of 15-16 it became clear that it wasn’t cool to ride a bike. As we all know, the most exciting thing for every high-schooler is getting their driver’s license.

I remember my parents telling me that I would have to get a job in order to afford a car. So at the ripe old age of 14 I got my first real job – at McDonald’s. Yep… first you have to be humbled before you can be cool apparently. Needless to say, I saved up enough to buy a 1990 Chevy Beretta. How I kept the ladies at bay was a mystery, it just naturally happened.

At a time with $0.88/gallon gasoline (1998), I made my way to the bowling alley, movie theater, cross town to friends houses, to school and a few side trips my parents don’t need to know about. That was all fine and dandy, but I still had to work here and there to afford my new-found responsibility. With no other obligations to my name, this wasn’t a huge drag, but the real sticker shock would occur in the 15 years since.

The cost itself wasn’t just in the form of driving from A to B, it was everything else it represented. Gas, car insurance, maintenance, the occasional ding or scratch, countless hours staring through a pane of glass, and the hours working a job I hated to afford it all. I grew up outside of Chicago in the far western suburbs and that meant LOTS of driving. Want to go to a baseball game? Drive. Need a job? Drive across the ‘burbs. Thinking about visiting friends? More driving…. you get the picture.

In college, I had an opportunity to study abroad in the Netherlands. Leeuwarden, a northerly city of 90,000 people exposed me to a different culture that has taken years to decipher what I really learned. The Dutch are widely regarded for their over-the-top biking culture. I didn’t really “get it” until my semester abroad started.

Amsterdam

We were told that we would probably want to rent a bike. The few Americans in the group looked at each other like it was a joke or something. Even me, I hadn’t ridden anywhere on a regular basis for several years didn’t understand it. We have cars … duh?  All kidding aside, they were serious. The best way to get around town is by bike. The town, which is hundreds of years old, is perfectly laid out for it. No bike? Well, walking is just as easy. Riding to the bar as a 21-year-old was probably the most freeing feeling you could imagine. You mean I can go do something stupid and follow it up with something responsible afterward? No shit…

Unless you’ve been, I have a real hard time of putting it into words and trying to explain it. That’s the reason why downtown Leeuwarden remains as my website header. To serve as a reminder that this other place exists.

Leeuwarden

After my tour abroad ended, it was back to Geneva, where that quaint, charming downtown existed but the biking culture didn’t. I was dying to bring back what I thought to be a slice of heaven back with me.  No one else felt the same. My excitement to ride faded as my jobs would take me here, there, and everywhere by car. It got to the point where I was filling up for gas twice a week. It became a repetitive and vicious cycle. I’d seen my Dad fall into it, and I knew it was killing him too. Spending hours in a car everyday isn’t healthy for you. That’s a no-brainer. So why do we get stuck in the proverbial rut?

We somehow accept this as our reality. We know in order to find work, we must drive. In order to find food, we must drive. In order to live, we must drive. After a year of life on the road, my then girlfriend, now wife, Danielle and I moved to Dallas, Texas. A change of scenery was interesting, and it provided the initial stimulation we needed. But something still seemed off. Gone were the Main Street’s and downtown’s of Illinois I was used too. Everything is bigger in Texas, even their big-box stores which dominated the landscape. Six-lane residential thoroughfares were the norm. Big hair. Big trucks. Big stereotypes. We enjoyed our stay, but after 5 years it was high time to head out.

Before we did, I came across a little biking movement that was taking over a south Dallas neighborhood. The Oak Cliff neighborhood was quickly becoming the “bike part of town.” I was curious, as I hadn’t heard of such a thing. Bike Friendly Oak Cliff, was one of those things that I needed to see at just the right time. “Ok, so there are people who have thought the same thing as me and feel the same way…” This wasn’t about racing, an extreme off-road excursion or loading up the bike for leisurely stroll at a park. This was about riding your bike for day-to-day things. I get that.

When we left Dallas for Peoria, I decided I’d like to take a slice of what I thought was a great citizen-led movement with me. We moved to Pekin, which admittedly, isn’t the biking capital of the world. I would talk about the Dutch, Dallas, and what I thought could be a bike movement in Central Illinois. The only thing more out of the ordinary than seeing someone without a DUI riding their bike in Pekin, is someone talking about “Bike Friendliness.”

Behind Bars

Back to the subject of stereotypes. The same freedom, liberation, and mobility I felt in Leeuwarden could and should be applied in Pekin, Peoria, or anywhere for that matter. Why is it that people think you must have done something wrong to be riding a bike in broad daylight wearing anything but lycra? To be fair, there are a good amount of those riding with some legal troubles, yes, but that’s why it is imperative for low-income, low-educated towns like Pekin to adopt a new transportation strategy. One that is equitable for all of its citizens. And for those who don’t want to hear my previous statement, I’m sorry, the 2010 Census blew your cover [DATA].

Whether you’re young or old, need affordable transportation, wanting to stay fit, or wanting to exercise your right not to drive, you should have that opportunity. So that is why, when a fate meeting with some other like-minded individuals early this spring brought us to the table looking to create a “biking movement” I jumped at the chance.

Erik & Danielle

My ride last night finally knocked loose what I was looking to write. I ride as much as I can right now. I wish it could be more, but you know, I have to drive to Peoria for a job. I am in meetings on opposite sides of town. I am renovating a house after all of that and need to carry random odds and ends around. I have seen more people out there who are curious. Those are the people who will help shape the future of Peoria. Having only lived here for two and a half years, I see an area that is dying for a breath of fresh air. We, as everyday, ordinary people can give that to the area we call home – one bike ride at a time.

For more of Erik’s musings, check out his blog at readerareadevelopment.com, follow him on Twitter @RADincorporated and Like ReaderAreaDevelopment on Facebook.

Want to be featured in Bike Peoria’s Why I Ride section? Email us at bikepeoria@gmail.com

 

92 views

The Chain Link: The League Of American Bicyclists

Under links we like, we have to start with the one that has been working the hardest to make biking in American cities a reality – The League of American Bicyclists

The League of American Bicyclists

Amongst all of the things they do, the League promotes bike-friendly communities across America. What is that exactly?

Bicycle Friendly Communities

Bicycling is more than a practical, cost-effective solution to many municipal challenges. It’s an opportunity to make your community a vibrant destination for residents and visitors — a place where people don’t just live and work, but thrive.

For more information, please check out The League of American Bicyclist website here.

9 views

People Like Us

PambaWe are always trying to find like-minded people or groups who are out doing great things in the area. One group is PAMBA, the Peoria Area Mountain Biking Association.

You may not have a street riding side to you, but deep down you are a rugged trail rider at heart. That’s cool, we get it. If you don’t know about PAMBA, here’s what they’re all about:

The mission of the Peoria Area Mountain Bike Association (PAMBA) is to promote off-road bicycling through education, trail creation, trail maintenance, and social events.

PAMBA was formed in April of 2000 in order to promote and protect some of the best off-road cycling areas in the Midwest and to promote the sport of mountain biking throughout the Peoria area.

Ride over to their site today PAMBAMTB.org and find out more!

13 views
City Hall

Bikes Around Town

Guess where?

City Hall

Have you spotted any bikes or bikers around town? Send us some pics of bikes around town to bikepeoria [at] gmail [dot] com

44 views

How Bikes Can Save Us

We here at Bike Peoria enjoy the simplicity of riding a bike, but we also love technology. Infographics are changing the way we look at things, and they’re doing it in such an appealing way. Let’s start with this one.

Transportation alone accounts for 20% of an American family’s budget, the 2nd biggest cost after housing [STUDY]. Easily one of man’s best inventions and most underutilized inventions, the bicycle can help us Americans save: money,  lives, and ourselves from one of man’s other greatest inventions – the automobile.

This infographic puts it all into perspective that, well, just maybe, bikes can save us.

Source: Visual.ly

40 views

Biking Basics

Are you bike curious? Don’t be shy. You hear about everybody these days riding their bike everywhere and you kinda want to get back on yours. The problem is, you may not be the bike buff you once were. If only someone could show you the way… Well, here’s a great video to get you back to the basics of riding a bike courtesy of the good folks at Grist.

Make sure to like Bike Peoria on Facebook and follow on Twitter @BikePeoria

51 views

Guest Post: What Would It Take For You To Bike Peoria?

Our tires are pretty pumped about having our first Guest Post here on our blog. When it comes to creating a movement or a culture change, it’s not always about who speaks the loudest or the most often – it’s about giving people a voice who don’t normally speak out about something they’d like to see done differently. Thank you to Sondra  for taking a minute to put those thoughts down for us to share!

sondra

What Would It Take For You To Bike Peoria?

Guest Post by: Sondra Ruffner, Peoria resident

S.Ruffner

When I was first learning to ride a bike, I would excitedly wait for my Dad to come home from work so I could ask him if he could take my training wheels off. He would usually give in to my request and with a twinkle in his eye he would help me on my bike and give me a little push start. I would eagerly peddle for a minute then suddenly realize I was doing it all on my own. I would hesitate and subsequently fall over.

It’s funny to look back and think about the excitement I felt and the hope I had that I might finally be ready to ride without training wheels. Oh the freedom!

I know individuals that let nothing get in the way of their love of biking. I have seen die-hard bikers on route 40 headed north, and I have friends that have biked across the United States, but most people I know that enjoy biking are casual riders and aren’t training for a race or a cross country biking trip!

People shouldn’t feel limited and guided by these extremes: a) Extremely dedicated despite physical safety b) Extremely desperate to ride in safety so they exclusively use special designated safe trails (paved or otherwise, most often a place they need to drive to).

path

I know others that make the extra effort needed for them to ride to work or the supermarket and end up turning it into an integral part of their daily transportation needs. It would be rewarding to be part of a community/society that promoted being regularly out and active, over being primarily in cars rushing from one indoor spot to the next.

Peoria has potential to be very bike-friendly. It has a good grid and network of streets, several parks with trails, as well as plenty of shopping locations and places of interest to become destinations. So why don’t we see more bikes on the road? I think it revolves around the amount of time it takes to bike to a destination and the level of safety one feels while out on the road.

I have seen a few signs dictating designated bike routes and I live close to one that I have not used. I have no desire to use it mainly because it goes into University Avenue (there is no bike lane or cross walk to walk your bike across to the route – I’ve seen lots of car accidents happen there – so I believe they expect you to just dart out into 45mph traffic and hope for the best) and has you use the turn lane which will lead you into a neighborhood that essentially leads to nowhere.

My problem with this particular bike route scenario is that many motorists don’t pay attention to other cars or motorcycles (for various reasons), and they also don’t pay attention to pedestrians (where there are/aren’t sidewalks), so why would they pay attention to me slowly peddling in a regular lane? It is nice that these routes exist, but they shouldn’t be confused as our safer option when they aren’t.

If we want to ride, we should feel free to do so efficiently with motorists while also feeling a certain level of safety. I believe that bike lanes and bike parking would provide a mental and physical awareness to drivers that there are others on the road and reassure bikers that they have a place to ride and a place to lock up and park.

If Peoria had a physical place for me on some of its primary roads, I would most certainly bike more. What would it take for you to bike Peoria?

 

Would you like to contribute to the Bike Peoria blog? All thoughts are welcome and no, you don’t have to be a pro. Please contact us with your thoughts and ideas!

106 views

Alley Cats and Bike Paths

 

ALLEY CATS & BIKE PATHS

Screen Shot 2013-06-12 at 11.45.22 AM

The race check points and most common route

This past Sunday we had a very exciting day in the Peoria Bike Scene. It all started bright and early at 3:30pm in Giant Oak Park where a top secret five card poker run Alley Cat race was held. When we arrived the race promoters gave us four check points, a special edition playing card, a map and 30 minutes to figure out our route. We started the race with an old fashioned arm wrestling contest and then we took on the streets of Peoria!

Keep fighting until you finally win!

Keep fighting until you finally win!

 

The Check Points:

Start: Giant Oak Park

  • McClure Branch Library
  • Franciscan Recreation Center
  • Glen Oak Park Pavilion
  • Parking Garage on Water St.

End: Giant Oak Park

It was a really exciting and close race having Steve Hinrichsen taking the high podium spot at first place and Dan Waite coming in a close second and Brad Nauman taking all the glory at third place. Keeping the top three times under 45 minutes climbing some of the most traitorous hills Peoria has to offer. With all of three of these class A athletes taking the podium we had a lovely young lady named Jasmin Garcia take the best hand with four 10’S. She by far brought the whole race to a stand still of anticipation with a victory for the female riders of Peoria. All in all it was a great and very exciting race! Can’t wait to do it again.

Steve(1), Dan(2) and Brad(3)

Steve(1), Dan(2) and Brad(3)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As for the Guerrilla Streets and Sanitation work while Rocking The Block later that day we the Alley Cats of Peoria took on the appropriate task to break all the barriers and make our own bike lane. In proper

The Real Champion of the Day!

The Real Champion of the Day!

action to show our unhappiness with the decision to not incorporate any bikes lanes in the new construction plans for washington street we decided to make our own. A little DIY street work before they tore up the street and began construction. The turnout was minimal but effective. We hope to gain momentum from all of this and get the word out and have more people at our next gathering.

DIY_BikePaths

 

117 views

Hear Ye, Hear Ye… Peoria Welcomes Bikes!

In preparation for June 25th’s Bike To City Hall Day, Bike Peoria received a proclamation at last night’s City Council meeting.

Bike Peoria Proclamation

As concerned citizens for the health and well-being of our Peoria neighbors, we here at Bike Peoria believe that one way to promote a better quality of life in our city is to get out and ride a bike. Not only for fun, but as a viable means of transportation. It’s not only good for the waistline, but your wallets! Seriously, have you seen gas prices?!

bikes in front of City Hall

Tuesday, June 25th is the next City Council meeting, and there’s no better way to get it in the mind’s of our decision makers, leaders, and the general public that bikes are welcome than to get it in writing and proclaim it to all.

Here’s what the proclamation reads:

Whereas, For more than a century the bicycle has been a utilitarian, economical, environmentally sound and effective means of personal transportation, recreation and fitness; and

Whereas, the City of Peoria, Illinois encourages the use of bicycles as a means of transportation; and

Whereas, the City of Peoria, Illinois recognizes bicyclists as a legitimate roadway users and therefore are entitled to legal and responsible use of all public roadway facilities in Illinois except highways constructed to interstate standards; and

Whereas, the City of Peoria, Illinois encourages the increased use of the bicycle, benefiting all citizens of Peoria by improving air quality, reducing traffic congestion and noise, decreasing the use of and dependence upon finite energy sources, and fostering exercise; and

Whereas, the City of Peoria, Illinois recognizing the use of bicycles as a viable mode of transportation, endeavors to promote safe and responsible bicycling and is committed to incorporating the development of bicycle facilities in the vision for revitalizing Peoria’s urban core; and

Whereas, Bike Peoria, the League of Illinois Bicyclists and the Mayor encourage all citizens to ride their bicycles to work, to the store, to the park, around their neighborhoods and with friends and family to promote the personal and societal benefits achieved from bicycling.

Now, therefore, I, James Ardis, Mayor of Peoria, Illinois, do hereby proclaim June 25, 2013 as “Bike To City Hall Day” in the City of Peoria, Illinois.

Imagine the Mayor, City Council, City employees, and all Peorian’s riding together to their monthly meetings…

You are invited to join us on Tuesday, June 25th to Bike To City Hall! The meeting starts at 6:15pm.

Helmet

147 views
Dozer Park

Win Or Lose, We Still Cruise

Great night last night for baseball at O’Brien err… Dozer Park. It was a high scoring affair and the Chiefs staged a late comeback, but the LumberKings held on for the 8-5 victory.

Peoria Chiefs

No worries though, a great time was had at Bike Peoria’s first-ever “Bike To The Ballpark” ride. In case you missed it, here is a brief recap of the scenes around the park…

bike valets

Bike valets. This should be a new “thing” in Peoria.

bikes

Bikes around the ballpark. So much less space needed than a boring old parking lot.

Friends of the Rock Island Trail

PAMBA

Friends of Bike Peoria showing off their duds. Thanks to Multi-Sport Extravaganza, Friends Of The Rock Island Trail, and Illinois Cycle and Fitness for having your representative tables there. Special thanks to Bushwhacker for providing the rack and the Peoria Chiefs for having us!

Tim

Tim and his Bike Peoria bike. This fan favorite is one tall drink of water.

And of course the most ridiculous thing you could imagine during the 8th inning. BIKE JOUSTING!


If you couldn’t make the Chiefs game, don’t worry, there’s another great event tonight. The Peoria Bike Summer Bike Art Show is taking place at Studio 825 in Peoria from 5-10pm. Ride up and check out some really unique art!

If you want to know when our next events are, please check out the Peoria Bike Summer and Pedal Peoria links to the side. Peoria Bike Summer is not only about some great events, it’s about taking in normal day-to-day activities by bike.

Follow us on Facebook & Twitter

 

26 views