Justina Frank, Last Month, Twenty Five Years discussed on Chicago Tonight
Bicycle sales skyrocketed in twenty twenty as the pandemic forced more people to exercise and commute outdoors but the surge in demand plus supply chain issues led the lingering shortages still being felt in chicago cycling community chicago. Tonight's quinn myers checked in with local bike shops in cycling groups last month about the tumultuous past year and what to expect this season. Here's another look bike shops across chicago. Say they've never experienced anything like twenty twenty. It was absolutely insane. I've been in this business for twenty five years. I've been a bike retailer. That long and i have never seen anything like it. Justina frank is the co owner of cosmic bikes in jefferson park which sells and fixes a wide range of styles. At first frank says last year bike. Boom was really great until they ran out of stuff to sell from her. We were still chugging along. And then i don't remember exactly when but at some point there was nothing more we could get. There was a point in the summer where we couldn't get basic inner tube sizes some really basic components to do repairs on people's existing bikes bike. Sales jumped sixty five percent in twenty twenty over the previous year. According to data from market research firm and pd group that came on top of a host of pandemic related supply chain issues for bike manufacturers in chicago that translated into long waits for maintenance last summer and an almost total scarcity of new bucks last year. People were like. Oh yeah this must be really great for you. Well yeah the demand is great but the demand has to be coupled with dependable. Supply have demand and there's no supply and you're spending a lot of time explaining to people why you don't have what you don't have bike shop owners in chicago. Say they've been able to at least partially restock and catch their breath. After last year's by boom but because of uncertainty in the markets there may be another shortage this year. We can't order anymore vice for twenty twenty one Whatever we're getting in Now is what we're getting And they've all they've actually started looking at twenty twenty two. Julian forsyth owns and operates the f. bikes on damon avenue in buck town which sells bikes and cycling apparel geared toward women foresight says in the past. When they didn't have a part she would just order it man. They would come these days she says. Bff is trying to stock up in case there won't be anything left few months. Bring your bike in. And you know you're crossing your fingers hoping that you know we can get their part for you if you if you need. While the past year has put a significant strain on local bike shops. it's also been a boon to area cycling groups in south suburban all sip. We caught up with chicago. Chapter of black girls do bike. A cycling club organized by and for women of color although all women are welcome. The group's leaders last adams says they've seen a huge surge of interest. Since the pandemic began. People were really getting into cycling and they were trying to reach out to various cycling groups. You know hey. Can i join join. We had well over one hundred people join our club in twenty twenty black girls. Do bike paused group rides for safety reasons in twenty twenty but are expecting to have a full calendar this season just this week about fifteen women showed up for an afternoon ride along the cal sag channel. Even though he'd been writing individually you know we have missed truly messed writing with our clubs with our group in our groups with our with the komo the camaraderie of group so we are really looking forward to doing that..