So many people love bikes and ride them. Hillsboro, Oregon is a fantastic place to ride with trails and parks aplenty, as well as many roads with adequate lanes for doing so. From young children to our oldest citizens, bicycles are a beloved form of transportation and recreation. But where do you go when you need to find a new bike or get a repair on your favorite one? Well, we have your hook up!
WashCo Bikes is a non-profit organization with one of the most wonderful and unique business models we have ever seen. The concept is very powerful. Bikes are dropped off by donation and the person donating the bicycle gets a nice tax deduction. That gift is then put back into the community at an incredibly low price (in my opinion) so that everyone can have a bike to enjoy. Many are taken into the WashCo bike shop and serviced, safety checked, and made ready like a new machine! One look at the racks of wheelers and any shopper will find a beauty ready to go home!
On a recent visit, I landed two scooters and a fantastic kids trike for my grand-boys. They were only $5 apiece (as-is) and we are all set for the next year or two as they learn to ride bigger bikes. A tandem bike caught my eye as well and I may go back and grab it if one of you don’t beat me to it. With a retail value of at least $1,500, I can grab it for a fraction of the cost. Colors, designs, options abound. I am telling you it is a great bike shop.
Shoppers can pick up and drop off on the curbside out front. It is also fine to go in and meet the staff with a mask on and only a limited number can be in there at one time. If you have bikes that you are done with, take them in and donate them. If you need a bike, this is a great place to start your search.
Now if the business was just selling and servicing bikes that would be one thing. But this shop is more than that, They are a robust organization that promotes bicycle safety, they promote Safe Routes to Schools, and they host bicycle camps for kids ages 8-13 where safety and maintenance are taught. Here is a more detailed list of the programs they offer:
- The Community Bicycling Center (CBC), where the community can buy used, refurbished bikes, get repair services, and buy accessories at reduced costs. We hope to hold community programs there as resources allow. The CBC also provides bike maintenance service for the City of Hillsboro.
- Saddle Up Summer Bike Camps are directed primarily toward youth ages 8-13. They are week-long day camps where the campers learn to ride safely on streets, do minor mechanical maintenance on their bikes, and do a lot of riding and having fun. Our great hope is that we will create lifelong cyclists because of the fun and skills they learned at camp.
- Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program support: SRTS is a national program with a goal of increasing the number of elementary school kids who walk and ride their bikes to school. We support the school Coordinators through bike rodeos and safety training, and bike maintenance.
- Bike Safety Education: We offer a portfolio of clinics and classes including
- Adult Learn to Ride and Family Learn to Ride
- Smart Cycling for New and Returning Cyclists
- Confidence in Traffic- the Art of Cooperative Cycling
- Commuting Brown bags, including at local companies.
- Adopt a Bike (AAB): The AAB program started in about 2010. This is a fundraiser for us as well as a great way to give back to the community. We solicit donations from the public, companies, or other organizations and then give a bike, helmet, lock, and lights to deserving students and adults. For the students, we work with selected schools to choose kids who would not have a bike otherwise, and hopefully have to do something to earn it-good attendance, write an essay, improve grades, etc. as determined by the school staff.
- Bike Rodeos: Short events (a few hours max) is a fun way for kids to learn/practice bike handling skills and basic safety info. We run the younger kids through some drills and obstacle courses on a playground/parking lot. It may include learning about the ABC Quickcheck, helmet fitting, etc.
- Monthly e-Newsletter: This is distributed to our contact list monthly, and contains news and information that is of interest to our members and supporters
These organizations support WashCo Bikes and more are listed on their website as well. The City of Hillsboro has its bicycles serviced there which is great to hear- we are all about #LocalSupport all the time. This year they hope to really step up the Adopt A Bike Program with local kids in need and they have a partnership with Doernbecher’s Children’s Hospital to have a bigger impact. Kids can get a bike, helmet, bike lock, and lights through this program. It is just awesome! Do you remember your first bike? Man, I sure do. The sense of pride, the power to fly down the streets, and the ownership of something so cool were special. You can help that to happen in the life of a child this year- and what a Covid Buster that is too! Get involved right here.
WashCo Bikes is open 7 days a week. Weekdays from 10-6 and weekends from 10-5. You will find them at:
137 NE 3rd Ave.
Hillsboro, OR 97124
Also, check out this recent customer experience from Laura Blevins of Hillsboro who gave them this glowing recommendation this weekend as we were preparing this story!
Dirk of WashCo bikes is not yours truly..yes, there are a few of us around! Mike and the rest of the staff are amazing as well. Go check our WashCo Bikes- my last experience at Dick’s Sporting Goods was a nightmare. This will be our only bike shop from here on out and we want you all to know what a great organization they are!
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