The Service Bar
Yes, it's true. We will have a bar at our bike shop and we will call it The Service Bar. Now, I would be totally dishonest if I said we haven't had our fair share of "huh?"s when we mentioned the concept of serving beer in our retail store. This blog post aims to explain what The Service Bar is (and what it isn't) and to describe where we are coming from with this idea.
Progression Cycle is first and always will be a family business at its core. I have a family and we love doing business right where we live - Sammamish. My wife and I love this community and aim to enrich it for all of the families that live here and contribute making this an even better place to for our daughter and all of the children here in Sammamish to grow up.
With that being said, we also believe in moderation and leading a balanced lifestyle. The yin and the yang, the salty and the sweet, working hard to earn a reward, and really any other cliche you can throw in there about life and work ethic. We have found that while we appreciate working hard, there is nothing sweeter than knowing you are working towards a reward and/or a goal. These goals or rewards can be very small and personal, something you only disclose to yourself or be on a larger scale and broadcast to the world.
If you are like me, I am a simple guy, sometimes the only reward I love after a long mountain biking session is to connect with my friends that I have just ridden with and foster that sense of community. Sometimes that means just a short chat in the parking lot after a ride, or sometimes it means going to have a quick bite to eat or meeting up at someone's house for an informal BBQ. What I have found is that many people that I've encountered seem to be looking for a gathering place to discuss bikes and usually over a couple of brews.
This is where the concept came from - quite simply - community. The Service Bar came from the epiphany that what I like about my clients, and what I have been told they like about me, is that they feel like they have a relationship with me and they are part of a small community with our shop. I love that and moving to the new shop, I wanted to make sure I remained authentic to this happenstance occurrence that our customers would actually want to hang out with us at the new store. The one thing I didn't like about our home based shop is that we didn't have the space to make a comfortable and inviting area for our clients to do this, and voila, the motivation and idea behind The Service Bar was born.
The Service Bar will be a limited service bar which we will only serve beer out of a can or a bottle. We will have complimentary snacks available during any time that The Service Bar is open for our patrons as well. We will have a variety of craft beers at any given time, but we are initially focusing as much as possible on local craft brewers in the state of WA. But if we end up getting bored we will venture out and see what other parts of the country have to offer as well.
Just for fun as well, a while back I posted a link to a podcast which was titled "Why Mountain Bikers Crave Craft Beer". Some of our favorite excerpts from the podcast are:
- "What's cool about craft beer is that it's a beverage that's crafted locally and mountain bikers are into local stuff."
- "80% of the mountain bikers we surveyed said they drink beer"
- "Part of the community aspect of mountain biking...the comradery. Hanging out after the ride"
- "Good way to interact"
- "Part of the ritual"
- "Mountain bikers love to tinker and work on stuff, and craft brewing is the same way. Almost all the craft brewers you'll see started as home brewers. They bought all the stuff and geeked out about it"