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June 03, 2007

A Bicycle Tree Grows in Anaheim

Bikeastree Located in Anaheim, CA. The Bicycle Tree is a nonprofit bicycle repair facility providing free tool access, used bicycles and parts, and bicycle repair education opportunities.

Among the great things of this effort:

1. Bicycle Repair Education Opportunities: In addition to the advice lent during our public repair hours, a visitor may also learn about bicycle repair.

2. Earn-A-Bike. In this youth-oriented program, participants learn the basic elements of bicycle repair during 15 hours of hands-on instruction.

They are looking for more volunteers, and donations, and have a goal of becoming bigger, and better, as time goes by.

Well, early last month I set out to visit the place, and meet Paul Nagel, and his crew.

Bik_tre1 Located in a small house at the intersection of Harbor Blvd., and Victor Ave., across the street from La Palma Park, only a small sign gives passers-by a clue about what goes on in the backyard.

The nearby park is a busy place, and for people who ride their bike, or don't have a car to transport their bike, for repair, getting to the shop is easy as there is the OCTA #43 bus, on Harbor, that connects with numerous East/West Routes all over the Norrth County, and even South County Cyclists can reach the shop from connecting busses.

Parking for cars is limited to the street, or the nearby park, but is not hard to come by.

Upon arriving I found Paul, and another volunteer, at work, and a nice lady working on her own bike.

Bik_tre2 Upon passing thru the gate I encounter a large stash of old bikes.

Big bikes, small bikes, slow bikes, fast bikes, even bikes for little tykes! ;-D

Ony in existence for a year they may be small but their vision is huge:

"A public facility where we can offer more hours, better shelter for the bikes, a more complete workshop,
improved sales space, better access for volunteers, more room to dance the mazurka...."

More room to dance the Mazurka? Now, THAT is a worthy goal indeed! ;-D

Yes, the space is cramped, and the workshop needs to be more complete, but it is a start.

I saw tires, and wheels of various varieties, and sizes, alongside other types of bike parts, and then, as I was looking around, I even got to meet one of those who supervises all the volunteers.

Bik_tre3

Tombstone is 2 1/2 years old, and an adventuresome, and very friendly, sort.

The name was given in honor of being rescued, as a kitten, from a cemetary. ;-D

Bike_tre5 They have basic new items for sale, including cables, housing, tubes, rim strips, cotter pins, and a limited selection of tires.

They also have several bicycles that have been thoroughly examined and repaired by volunteers.

All other bikes are also available for you to fix up for yourself.

They have 2 stands on which to set bikes on to be worked on.

You have free access to a variety of tools, and volunteers are always around to lend a hand, and give advice.

While there is no charge for either tool use, or assistance, donations are very much appreciated.

Bik_tre4 The Bicycle Tree is a project of Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs (SEE), a non-profit public charity, and you can learn more about this effort by visiting the website of Save our Planet.

If you wish to donate a bicycle or parts, you can bring them by during business hours, but keep in mind they are not a place to get rid of your junk.

Bring something that can be used, even if it needs a little work.

They are always looking for volunteers ( That's Paul, on the right! ) to help fix bikes, apply for grants, organize parts, do computer stuff, publish flyers, advertise, set up fundraising events, arrange group bike rides, and just get the word out.

There are major benefits to being a volunteer:

Free tea ( maybe even a morsel or two ), discounts on stuff,
and being able to work on your bike on Thursday evenings.
And don't forget the 'ol warmth in your heart.
The more ye give, the more ye shall receive.

Now, I ask ya... What more can ya want? ;-D

Check out the website for information, and their growing list of resource links.

June 3, 2007 in Pedaling Advocacy | Permalink

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