(Courtesy of Guest Blogger Duane Mierzejewski, owner, Bananas for Bikes)
I grew up and was raised right here off East 185th St., East Park Dr. and Windward Ave. At the age of 23, I moved away to the southeast side of Cleveland for 15 years to Slavic Village. Following that, I spent 15 years raising my children in Richfield. Personal reasons brought me back to Euclid in 2011.
I have always loved cycling — starting as a tourist then moving to long-distance riding and competitions. The 90s saw me move to commuting to work by bicycle for fun and fitness. Since I’ve moved back to Euclid, I just ride for fun and leisure, to stop and smell the roses. In 2014, I became hooked on the collection and restoration of old, vintage bicycles from the 50s, 60s and 70s. I continued to grow a nice collection of bikes and friends through various organizations and bicycle shows/swap meets. All the while, I bought, sold, traded and donated bikes from my home on Craigslist and eBay.
This past fall, I decided to go all in/full go on opening a storefront/shop right here in Downtown Euclid at 21936 Lake Shore Blvd. I have watched the area for a few years and realized that there is really nothing around here that fits my niche as an old-school bike shop. Why not? Euclid has not had any store/shop-related bike stuff for 25 years. I have a passion and a gut feeling that this may work – a place where anyone can come in, enjoy a slice of nostalgia, maybe purchase an older, vintage bicycle, browse around at a museum that have planned for the basement area. I will not sell new bicycles, but recent to much older, vintage bikes that have been refurbished and made rideable — and at a better cost than buying some junk at a big-box store. Styles will include BMX, Muscle, Single, 3-speed, 5-speed and 10-speed Cruisers with 18-, 20-, 24-, 26- and 27-inch wheel sizes.
Also, I intend to have a fully operating repair service for many bikes, but probably not the very high-end ones. I will carry a complete line of parts, accessories such as helmets, tubes, tires, handlebars, seats, water bottles, etc. The shop will be a start location to gather for rides, events such as the Euclid Art Walk, the Memorial Day Parade, and local bike ride – heck, even Bike Euclid Events. We have ample parking in back and along Lake Shore Blvd. The location should help and benefit many, especially with the expanded bike lanes and the Lakefront Renovation. I may even introduce rental of older, vintage bicycles for out-of-town visitors or for anyone who may want to ride a bicycle they had as a child 30 to 40 years ago.