Tag Archives: Penn Cycle

With help from Penn Cycle’s Michael Weiss, Trek replaces my X-Caliber frame

A few months ago I noticed two small cracks developing at the top of the seat tube on the frame of my 2011 Trek X-Caliber 29’er. It gradually got to the point where seat post wouldn’t stay up. A couple of my fellow riders suggested that I check with my local Trek dealer since the Trek Care bike warranty covers “Frames for the lifetime of the original owner.”

I bought the bike from Penn Cycle (see my June 2011 blog post for the story).  And although we have two Trek dealers here in Rice County (Mike’s Bikes in Northfield, Milltown Sports in Faribault) that I regularly patronize, I knew that Penn Cycle would have my original purchase info in their database.

 

Continue reading With help from Penn Cycle’s Michael Weiss, Trek replaces my X-Caliber frame

The 20th Anniversary MORC Gala: speakers and auctions and beer, oh my!

20th Anniversary MORC Gala at the Varsity TheaterThe 20th Anniversary MORC Gala at the Varsity Theater in Minneapolis on Sunday was fabulous. As a MORC board member, I’m more than a little biased, of course.  So with that caveat, here’s a glimpse into the wingding.

Kristin Clark, MORC Board member, meteorologist, and 2WheelWeather bloggerThe doors opened at 2pm for the Surly Brewing Happy Hour, with live music by The Lost Wheels. MORC Board member, meteorologist, and 2WheelWeather blogger Kristin Clark (@2WheelWeather & @KClarkWx) was the Master of Ceremonies and began her duties by introducing each of the speakers.

Continue reading The 20th Anniversary MORC Gala: speakers and auctions and beer, oh my!

MORC’s 20th Anniversary Gala: why it’s a big deal to me & why you should be there on Nov. 9

MORC Gala

I have a little story to tell but if you want to get all the info about the MORC 20th Anniversary Gala coming up on Nov. 9, CLICK HERE. More on the Gala’s Facebook event page here.

MORC tent at Cuyuna grand opening 2011

I took up the sport of mountain biking in serious way in June of 2011 after attending the Cuyuna Lakes Mountain Bike Festival Grand Opening. In the photo above, I’ve added an arrow pointing to the MORC and IMBA tents in the back of the parking lot at Cuyuna that weekend. I’d never heard of either organization but I became a member a few days later shortly after purchasing a a 2011 Trek Gary Fisher X- Caliber 29’er from Penn Cycle in Bloomington, courtesy of Ben Witt at Milltown Cycles in Faribault.  (If that makes no sense to you and you’re curious, click here.)

I’ve been hooked on mountain biking ever since, as evidenced by the 250+ posts to this Mountain Bike Geezer blog.  And in those 3 years, I’ve done 90% of my year-round mountain biking on MORC trails in the Twin Cities metro area.  I feel a kinship to the organization like no other because of what it’s given me: the enjoyment of a sport I love and the opportunity to meet and spend time with so many great people.  Being a MORC board member this year has been an honor, especially since it’s MORC 20th anniversary season, topped off with this big fundraiser Gala,

Matt Andrews and Pat Sorenson Gary Sjoquist and Pat Sorenson

I’m also pleased that Penn Cycle, where I bought the bike that I still ride nearly every day, has stepped up to be the Title Sponsor for the Gala. That’s founder/owner Pat Sorenson handing a check to MORC Executive Director Matt Andrews in the left photo. Continue reading MORC’s 20th Anniversary Gala: why it’s a big deal to me & why you should be there on Nov. 9

And now I can say I’m a mountain bike racer

Eric Guse with his son, RyanI raced again this week at Penn Cycles’ Thursday Night at the Races at Buck Hill.  But it felt like my first-ever mtb race since last week’s race in the Beginner Class was, um, special. Why? I showed up at the 7:30 pm starting line, only to see about a dozen kids, most if not all under 13.  I spotted a dad nearby, Eric Guse, who appeared to be lining up to race, too. But he’d already raced and was there to accompany his son, Ryan.

I felt more than a little foolish but at the advanced age of 62, I’m starting to get used to age-related embarrassments so I shrugged it off and started out leisurely aside Eric. But after a few minutes, I decided to go as hard as I could until I approached the end, at which point, I’d stop short of the finish line.  I really didn’t want to be on a podium, denying one of the kids their chance in the limelight.  

Sydney Carlson (2nd from left) and familySo I passed one kid after another until I could only see one more, about two minutes from the finish line. As I got closer, I could tell it was a young girl, her blond pony tail flying.  She was fast, though, and my only realistic opportunity to pass her was on the long, gravelly downhill right before the finish. It was not to be. Her family was there cheering for her and that seemed to motivate her to go faster. I just kept right behind her to the finish where I pulled aside before crossing the line.  I learned later that she was Sydney Carlson, and she finished third. Two boys finished 2-3 minutes ahead of her so I probably would’ve lost to those guys even if I’d gone out hard from the beginning. Dang kids.

I asked one of the women workers at the finish line why nobody told me that the Beginner Class was really a kids class and she explained that normally, they do have a dozen or so adults in the class so they split the awards by age: 17 and under and 18+. Ahhhhh.

The Penn Cycle folks rubbed salt into my wounds by awarding me first place in the 18+ Beginner Class.  At least no one laughed loud enough for me to hear when I went up to accept my $10 gift card.

Penn Cycles' Thursday Night at the Races at Buck Hill Penn Cycle owner Pat Sorenson (right) and staff, Thursday Night at the Races at Buck Hill Penn Cycles' Thursday Night at the Races at Buck Hill
As you can see from these three photos and others in my album of 180+ (large slideshow) it’s quite a festive atmosphere. Props to Penn Cycle owner Pat Sorenson (on the right in the center photo) and staff for a great venue.

swag: Thursday Night at the RacesSo last night I raced again at Buck Hill, only this time in the Recreation Men Class.  Two laps, a slightly more difficult course than last week, 59 riders. I finished 50th.  Complete results here.  I passed one rider, right at the end, which, I must say, was quite satisfying.

And I lucked out: my name was drawn for some swag. I got good pair ($25) of mountain bike gloves (which I really needed) and a "Thursday Night at the Races" t-shirt.

Photo album: Penn Cycle Thursday night MTB race at Buck Hill

Penn Cycle Thursday night MTB race at Buck Hill Penn Cycle Thursday night MTB race at Buck Hill Penn Cycle Thursday night MTB race at Buck Hill
I’ve got a blog post coming about my first ever mountain bike race in the dirt: the first 2012 event in a series of Thursday Night Mountain Bike Races at Buck Hill in Burnsville.

But it’ll take me a few days before I get it written up and I wanted to get the photo album posted quickly.

See the large slideshow (recommended) of 182 photos or SLOW CLICK this small slideshow:

Minnesota High School Cycling League’s kick-off open house

Minnesota High School Cycling League Kick-Off Open House Libby Hurley and colleagues at the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) booth Minnesota High School Cycling League 2012 schedule Josh Kleve
The Minnesota High School Cycling League held their Kick-Off Open House at QBP’s HQ last night. About 100 people attended.

Gary Sjoquist, QBP's Advocacy Director at MN High School League's open house Gary Sjoquist, QBP's Advocacy Director at MN High School League's open house Gary Sjoquist, QBP's Advocacy Director at MN High School League's open house
Gary Sjoquist, QBP’s Advocacy Director, hosted the event and presented the detailed plans in two separate sessions. Here’s the 31-minute audio (download the MP3).

Here’s a Slideshare view of Gary’s Powerpoint presentation that can be viewed while listening to the audio. Or you can download the original Powerpoint file now available on the Kick-Off Open House page.

 

Gary said that the League’s first initiative is to form a high school mountain bike racing league in here in MN. Other cycling sports might be supported at a later date but that the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) believes that mountain biking is the ‘T-Ball’ of cycling.  The League’s events will be open to individual student riders but organizers also believe that forming high school teams is the best way for students to learn the skills and how to ride safely.

Minnesota High School Cycling League Kick-Off Open House Minnesota High School Cycling League Kick-Off Open House Minnesota High School Cycling League Kick-Off Open House Minnesota High School Cycling League Kick-Off Open House Minnesota High School Cycling League Kick-Off Open House
Organizers helped the attendees meet each other in geographic groups to facilitate planning. I got together with some guys from Cannon Falls and Red Wing and we’re exploring the possibility of forming a Cannon River Valley regional team, to include those towns plus Faribault and Northfield.

Here’s a Slideshare view of a presentation that can be used when presenting the concept to school administrators. Or you can download the original Powerpoint file now available on the Kick-Off Open House page.

Erik's Bikes and Boards Shop Penn Cycle and Fitness

Props to Erik Saltvold, CEO and founder of Erik’s Bike and Board Shop and Pat Sorenson, President of Penn Cycle, for signing on to be Founding Retailers/Platinum Level Sponsors. See the League’s Feb. 28 press release for more details.

Erik Saltvold Erik Saltvold at the Jesse James Bike Tour Erik's Bike Shop at the Jesse James Bike Tour Libby Hurley and Eric Saltvold Libby Hurley and colleagues at the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) booth
I met Erik Saltvold back in 2000 when we were both members of an Inner Circle business group. He paid a visit to Northfield in 2008 for the annual Jesse James Bike Tour, as his shop is a Tour sponsor and provides mechanical support for the 1,000+ riders.  I didn’t realize it till I looked at photos from 2008 but Libby Hurley, Marketing & PR Manager for Erik’s Bike Shop, was also in Northfield that day and there last night as well (on the right in the right photo above), helping to staff the the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) booth. Libby’s also doing PR work for the MN Cycling League. See the Media Center page for contact info.