Urban Phoenix is home to a great group of bike shops, whether you’re a newbie looking for a beach cruiser or a seasoned racer looking for that carbon fiber seatpost that will surely guarantee your PR to the South Mountain towers. Having been in both those categories, and having five bikes hanging in the garage, I knew this assignment was right down my path.
April was Valley Bike Month. Events included the Great Bike Chase that took bikers from Hance park through the streets of downtown to Chase Field to experience a Diamondbacks game, and PedalCraft which brought together bicycles, art, and community to celebrate the city’s growing urban bike scene.
The biking euphoria continued straight into May with National Bike Month, which is more appropriate for those states that just recently de-thawed. Though, we’re lucky enough to have year-round bikeable weather for commuting, racing and bar-hopping, and it feels like there are more bike riders on the streets of downtown than ever before. Businesses are cluing in that adding bike racks attracts business, ASU’s downtown population is growing and downtown-adjacent residents are joining in and leaving the car at home.
We bike locally, why not buy locally? Local First Arizona acts as a great reminder to source as much of your daily needs as you can from local growers and purveyors. Local goods are likely to be fresher and feed our local economy.
Think of your local bike shop in the same way. No, squeezing the seat won’t tell you if the bike is ripe, but the local knowledge, customer service and selection are enough reasons to put these four Central Corridor shops on your go-to list. The common theme in talking to these shop owners and managers was the passion that they have in giving a quality customer service and products to the buyer. They are all dedicated to the development of a cycling friendly Phoenix.
From south to north, this local line-up of full service cycling shops between 7th and 7th can satisfy all your cycling needs from bikes and accessories to repairs and advice. Honorary mention in this list is State Bicycle Co., a Tempe-grown, urban bike manufacturer, in keeping with the Local First Arizona theme.
130 North Central Avenue #104, Phoenix, AZ 85004
Owner: Palmer Martines
Hours: Mon-Fri 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. Sat 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Phx Bike is an urban cycling boutique with a wide variety of bikes ranging from BMX, commuters and fixed gear bikes. This downtown shop is a blend of a traditional cycling shop and art gallery. Bikes and original 35mm photos are displayed with an organized, modern slant. Palmer’s detail for design carries forward with custom build options of all price ranges, as well as complete bikes from a diverse supply line. Same day service and proximity to light rail are a draw.
712 West Indian School Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85013
Manager: Tim Furguson
Opened: 1912, 1955 at current location
Hours: Mon-Sat 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Sun 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Since 1912 Landis has grown up with the valley. From its original Central Phoenix location, they have expanded to four shops. The 7th Ave location has adapted to the trends over the years and now specializes in bikes for the whole family, including cruisers, commuters, kids bikes, and great accessories. Don’t worry, you’re still able to drool over the selection of Lance-worthy road and mountain bikes. Landis also features a unique “Women’s Only” section featuring specific bikes, clothing and accessories for the ladies.
4412 North Central Ave., Phoenix, AZ 85013
Owner: Eric Angermeier
Opened: 1999, current location 2010
Hours: Mon-Fri 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. Sat 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sun 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Slippery Pig Bike Shop has a prime location next to Lux Central, Pane Bianco, and a short walk to a light rail stop. You’ve got fuel and transportation and none of it involves a car. A wide variety of bikes and accessories are found at Slippery Pig with an extensive mountain and road selection. Eric has been an advocate of 29er mountain bikes since their inception and is a great resource.
5833 North 7th St., Phoenix, AZ 85014
Manager: Joe DeLong
Hours: Mon-Fri 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Sat 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Joe keeps an inventory of mountain and road bikes, but the impressive selection of cruiser bikes and accessories make this showroom a destination. If you are looking for something unique like a stretch low-rider, or a cruiser with a built-in cup holder, Sun Cyclery is the place. They also have a great selection of recumbent bikes and trikes, for a more relaxed or stable cycling experience.
2167 E. Cedar St #4, Tempe, AZ 85281
State Bicycle Co. is a Tempe based manufacturer of high quality, stylish, and affordable bicycles. Started in 2009 by three ASU graduates, State Bicycle Co. has quickly grown to offer a single speed/fixed speed bike as well as a fixed gear freestyle bike, which are both gaining a strong urban following. State Bicycle Co. likes to keep things fresh by running production of their colorways for only 3-6 months before they are retired and new models are introduced. You don’t have to travel to Tempe, PHX Bike and Slippery Pig Bikes carry a selection of these hot urban bikes.
Photography by Jack London
Did you hear that Travel + Leisure ranked Phoenix/Scottsdale number nine in the nation for worst dressed? Well, that is certainly a disappointing (and questionable), but let’s see if we can switch up our style by taking advantage of these fabulous sales and events going on in June.
District: Evans Churchill
(6th Street south of Roosevelt Street)
• Men’s and women’s bathing suits are 20% off the entire month
(1st Street South of McDowell Road)
• Rachel Malloy [owner] is celebrating her 30th birthday by offering a special online coupon
(West side of CityScape)
• Mention Downtown Phoenix Journal and receive 10% off your purchase
• Storewide T-shirts are 20% off
• Shirts from the Culture Fresh brand are 30% off
• New women’s collection will be available in the 2nd week in June
District: Historic Roosevelt
(Central Avenue south of Roosevelt Street)
• Every Saturday in June is buy 1 get 1 50% off any dress when you mention the Downtown Phoenix Journal
• New Summer Hours:
(Central Avenue south of Roosevelt Street)
• 15% off for ASU students with a valid i.d.
• All long sleeved items are 25% off
(Located inside Vintage by Misty)
• 15% off for ASU students with a valid i.d.
• All neckwear items are 10% off
• 30% off of jackets and vests
District: Melrose/7th Avenue
(7th Avenue north of Indian School)
• Everything in store is 20-50% off through June 30
(7th Avenue south of Indian School)
• Nightwear items are 50% off all month
(7th Avenue south of Camelback)
• 25% off denim, handbags and bath & body products the entire month
• Pink Tent Event on June 21 and 22 — 25-75% off everything at the event
District: North Central
(Bethany Home Road west of 16th Street)
• Mention Downtown Phoenix Journal and receive 15% off your purchase, excludes homemade items
Take a peek inside locals’ shopping bags and learn how they use health and beauty products in everyday life.
Occupation: General Manager at Baja Bush Pilots
What she purchased:
• B-Green Mint Lip Balm
• B-Pure Almond Lip Balm
Why she chose these products: I walked by the Just B booth once at First Fridays, but I didn’t have any cash on me. I knew I wanted to come back because I really like their cause here — all of the proceeds go toward fighting homelessness. The products are reasonably priced, and I feel good paying for something that is so worthwhile. It helps support a local business, which I’m always more than happy to do.
Her must-have: My favorite of my purchases is the mint lip balm. It has that clean, relaxing smell and it just feels great. I’m happy with what I bought because they are the same scents I always buy, but I was able to get them while supporting a good cause.
How she benefits: I like that these are good health and beauty products. Just looking at the overall big picture, their stuff contains no chemicals, so it is beneficial to health without using harmful ingredients. And also, natural products are just always going to be better for you and easier on the skin and body.
Why they fit her style: A lot of people now are more interested in knowing exactly what they are putting in and on their bodies. They also seek a higher benefit when shopping for these kinds of items. Buying these lip balms shows that I care about where my beauty products come from and that I don’t buy things just anywhere. I will definitely be coming back here to try out different flavors.
Bike Chic Special Edition | Bunky Boutique features bicycle-inspired accessories for the dapper downtowner looking to add some hot wheels to their life in ways other than as transportation.
Age: Opened in 2007
Occupation: Providing a fun shopping experience
Where Spotted: 1st Street south of McDowell Road
The Story: Bunky Boutique owner Rachel Malloy is constantly restocking the shop with stylish and unique clothing and a large array of accessories, but did you know she also focuses on the transportation side of fashion? No, that doesn’t mean that the boutique is now carrying bicycles (though that would be quite fantastic), but that does mean bicycle-inspired accessories are in and going fast!
These little and big necklaces are simple and delicate but certainly add a little spice to a simple T-shirt when biking around.
Bicycle | $20
Vintage Bike | $20
If you’re headed out to a wedding or a baby shower, these two cards are great buys and so unique!
Baby Shower | $6
Wedding | $5.25
Of course rings are a great feature to add to any outfit, so why not throw some personality in with those rings by wearing these detailed bicycles.
Each | $13
This handy notebook is great to keep in your bag for those random thoughts in your head, and the cute front cover is sure to start a fun conversation.
Notebook | $10
Perhaps the best accessory, a bike light! These are vital to any chic yet safe bicycle ride and this new style is surely an eye-catcher.
Each | $29
VegCo, a new plant-based supermarket, is expected to open in a to-be-determined Midtown location. By the end of this year, the local grocery store will make it easier for people in the central Phoenix area to knock out all of their meat-free grocery shopping in one place.
Heather Francois, the founder of VegCo, said the store will provide affordable, high-quality foods for the increasing number of people restricting their meat consumptions. Francois added that she wants to make grocery shopping more convenient for those with special diet needs.
“I wanted to tie all the factors together and serve those people who eat strictly organic, who are focused on local products and community, and who may have allergy concerns,” Francois said. “I also want to able to give (Phoenix locals) plenty of options.”
She added that Phoenix needs this supermarket because of the push for sustainable living and healthier diets.
“There’s a movement growing here and across the nation as people realize all the dangers of eating meat products,” Francois said. “People are becoming more educated on plant-based diets and how they are optimal for the human body.”
Want to skip the meat? Here are a few vegetarian dining options:
Other food experts in the area are also making changes to meet shifting demands as more people join in the plant-based food movement.
Ingrid Hirtz, a chef originally from Austria, said she began building a business around vegetarianism to show people that meals without meat can actually taste delicious. Along with cooking at Fair Trade Cafe, she recently started a vegetarian meal preparation service to serve the city economically and environmentally friendly cuisine.
Hirtz added that she hopes to make people realize the standard American diet is not the standard global diet.
“The United States focuses on meat,” Hirtz said. “If you go out to a restaurant, everything on the menu has a focus on the meat—such as a pork tenderloin or a steak. But in other countries, the traditional diet usually consists of some kind of legume or grain with vegetables—meat is more of a side dish.”
Whether it be her creamy vegetable korma curry or goat cheese quiche made with almond flour and sun-dried tomatoes, Hirtz said it just takes getting people to realize the food tastes good.
“Before, people thought of vegetarians as people who cut out meat and had to go to the salad bar or just eat side dishes.” Hirtz added. “Now, it’s a cuisine in itself. People don’t realize that it can be a very satisfying culinary experience.”
Now that Phoenix residents seem to accept and understand vegetarianism more than ever before, a local meat producer said she certainly noticed the shift in views.
Beth Wilson, owner of The Meat Shop, said when she first began giving out meat samples at The Phoenix Public Market, she worried that her products would not sell among this huge vegetarian population.
“I was thinking, ‘Wow, 75 percent of these people walking by won’t even look at or touch the samples,’” Wilson said. “I thought maybe that would impact my business in Phoenix.”
Luckily, Wilson said many people come from families who still eat meat, so they visit her shop for local products made from “happy pigs” and meats made without the use of preservatives or chemicals.
Even if people refuse her products because of vegetarian or vegan beliefs, Wilson said she understands and respects their goals.
She added, “It’s just a part of their search to live better, eat better, and be a better person.”