Bike sales increase as more people pedal to work Hal Trovillion, pastor of First Baptist Church of Manteno, rides his bike four blocks to his church every Sunday. "I have ridden my bike to church for a couple years," Trovillion said. "It saves me money, but I mainly use it for exercise. It can also be eco-friendly."
Trovillion is not alone. As the cost of getting from here to there increases, local stores have reported a spike in bicycle sales as more people look for alternative means of transportation to save money...high fuel prices and eroding consumer confidence led more people to reach for Kryptonite bike locks rather than car keys.
And strong sales continue even as winter approaches, bike shop owners say. The national trend can be seen at Tern of the Wheel bike shop in Bradley. "We have experienced a 10 percent increase in sales compared to last year," said owner Steve Linneman. "People are saying they want to ride their bike to work because they can't afford to put gas in their car."
"The fact that people--even in Houston--are riding in record numbers is a clear sign to us that this is happening across the country in places you wouldn't expect," said Elizabeth Kiker, a spokeswoman for the League of American Bicyclists. ( Read more.)
At the autumn equinox, we can perhaps declare Summer 2008 to have been the season Americans rediscovered the bicycle. This article from Illinois indicates that bike shops all over the country are reporting increased sales. All year, we've seen evidence of flourishing bike sales across the U.S., from Massachusetts to Ohio, to Florida to Oregon. The cost of gasoline is clearly a factor--about 30 percent above last year's price at this time. This article from "middle America" is further confirmation that the bicycling trend isn't just a phenomenon of the coastal areas or college towns. Bicycling is sweeping the nation.