A couple Saturdays ago, I had a block of time to check out the free bike program at Tri-County Bicycles. They run the Bike Pottstown program out of their shop; this totally awesome program lets you check out a bike for the day in exchange for handing over some i.d. and signing a waiver. These single-speed, canary yellow two-wheelers with basket in front hearken back to simpler times – when you pedaled forward to keep moving ahead and backward to stop with no big decisions to make in between. (Apparently these Fuji Sanibel Cruisers – 30 of ’em- were custom painted by Blast From the Past Street Rods.)
I wanted to ride along the Schuylkill River Trail and got some info from the guys at the store and also looked at some of the brochures they have up front. Heading outside, I went right on High Street, took the first right onto Charlotte Street, the next right onto Queen Street and let the downward incline pull me along. It was a bit chilly and rain was in the forecast, but I was willing to take my chances. There’s nothing like cruising along on two wheels to feel like you’ve finally been set free.
At the end of Queen Street, I took a left onto Hanover Street, but not before a quick peek into the former Goodwill firehouse from 1871 on the corner. (Does anyone know what’s happening with that building??) Following the signs to Riverfront Park, I ended up at the trailhead, where the new parking lot looks like it’s just about done.
And then I enjoyed a few miles out and back along the trail, passing walkers, joggers and a couple other cyclists. Although I could usually hear the hum from Rt. 422 or 100, the overwhelmingly green vistas were a gorgeous and welcome break from the built environment. Can’t wait to go back when the sun is shining!
I had forgotten to bring my helmet, but I have to make a plug for remembering to bring yours or asking for one from Tri-County Bicycles. Please note that cyclists using a bike from Bike Pottstown must be at least 16 years old.
And, finally, I have to give a shout-out to the many groups and businesses that support this program and made it come to life: Pottstown Health and Wellness Foundation, Exelon, Pottstown Police Officers’ Association, Borough of Pottstown, Tri-County Area Chamber of Commerce, Greater Valley Forge Transportation Management Association, Preservation Pottstown, Tri-County Bicycles & Blast From the Past — all testament to what can be achieved when everyone’s pulling together.
256 E. High St.
Pottstown, PA 19464
Hours: Monday thru Friday 10am – 6pm; Saturday 10am – 5pm