Lift Off! Here we go to the GAP

Pittsburgh! The Wild POGs enjoy our first dinner.

 After a desperate 4 hours’ sleep, Brian and I leapt from our bed as soon as both our phone alarms rang. Mine played Rascal Flatts’ emblematic “Life is a Highway,” more a bike path for us. Only a couple hours later, we inched our way to LAX and the flight we shared with nine of our Pedego pals. Imagine! Eleven of us, all smiling and joking as we boarded our flight to Pittsburgh.

The rest of the 20 riders either flew out of John Wayne or took another LAX flight. Two, we knew, had driven a van and trailer across the USA. Dennis and Stephen, two 70-something men (superheroes, really) hauling all our bikes and gear to meet us there, ready for the ride.

Our grand plan was simple: Land, party, sleep, and then the next morning… hop on our bikes and go! As Robert wrote on Facebook last night to our private group, “We are embarking on the adventure of a lifetime.” Riding the plane that soared us toward our adventure, I couldn’t help but think of the friends and family I’ve known through my life who played it safe and never took to the path on two wheels, preferring instead to sit life out. But life has a way of getting you no matter where you go or what you do. As they say, no one gets out of life alive. So I’m grateful to the Wild POGs for drawing Brian and me out even more than normal. We are enjoying life full throttle. And that’s how it should be. 

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Miles and Miles and All Those Smiles

THE GREAT GAP ADVENTURE IS COMING!

I’m so proud of our riders. Recently, the Wild POGs rode nearly 50 miles, as they practiced on the San Gabriel River for the upcoming ride on the Great Allegheny Passage (GAP). They tested their mettle and their pedal as they worked to make it all the way back to Pedego GLB at the end of the ride. The last 10 miles on the river path slammed the riders in the face with horrendous headwinds. But they persevered, they smiled with gritty determination, and they all made it back. YAY!

In the next few weeks, we’ll be making our final preparations as we embark on our Great GAP adventure. Bookmark this blog and follow along. The plan is to begin riding out of Pittsburgh on June 19.  I’ll write an update each night, if I have WiFi available.

REMINDER: This Saturday, June 9, at 10 a.m., we’re hosting a Saturday Seminar about the next big adventure. Stop by for a snack and some information on the Katy Trail. You’ll be so excited when you see the video. This is why we buy Pedego electric bikes.

See you on the bike path …

Clean Green Machine for Earth Day and Beyond

Earth Day reminds us of our responsibility to the planet. Yet reducing our carbon footprint isn’t always easy. Those of us who live in states like California know about traveling real distances in a day. We think nothing of driving more than 60 miles to go see a concert in Coachella Valley or visit friends in Los Angeles. No one is asking us to give that up. But perhaps we should be thinking about what we can do on a regular basis for all our local trips. How about when you go to the market? Or the beach? Or work? Why are so many people climbing into cars for that?

Meanwhile, people try to find time outside of work and other obligations for exercise and maybe even some stress-reducing recreation. And it’s often a struggle to make that happen. So, consider the opportunity you could have to blend it all into one thing — something that adds fun to the mix. That’s what electric bikes can do.

You can ride around town to take care of errands, even carrying several bags of groceries that would weigh down a standard bike. You can keep up a steady speed — despite hills, headwinds or distances — and enjoy a workout that doesn’t exhaust you in the middle of a busy day. You can arrive at work without dripping sweat. You can enjoy fresh air and scenery instead of suffering through smog and traffic. You can save the cost of your bike by simply riding past the gas station with a smile.

And you will reduce your carbon footprint.

Think electric bikes are expensive? Consider the cost of NOT owning one. I think that makes owning a Pedego a great choice. I choose to be healthy. I choose to be smiling. I choose to do my part for the earth. And if you stop by Pedego GLB, we can help you make those choices too.

Let Earth Day remind you, it’s time to protect our planet. Leave that car in the garage, and join the Wild POGs. See just how much fun you can have while going green.

See you on the bike path!

It’s March! Let’s Ride!

Spring 2018 is almost here. While it was a mild winter with plenty of cool-breeze rides, we know that a lot of folks wait to “wake up” to warm weather riding. This year, they’ll discover all kinds of excitement in the air.

Our store’s POG (Pedego Owners Group) is one of the most active chapters of the national POG. Just last Wednesday, a group of us rode from San Juan Capistrano to San Clemente Pier and back. It was Beth’s Epic Birthday Ride, something I coined the first year I rode my original Pedego on a birthday celebration ride with my son. Now, I have a wonderful community to share these delightful experiences with. And that’s just our local activities.

Today, we held another meeting of the GLB POG GAP Ride group to prepare for our June trip. For those who don’t speak in acronyms, GLB stands for Greater Long Beach (as in our store’s territory) and GAP stands for the Great Allegheny Passage. This June about 20 of us will ride our Pedego electric bikes from Pittsburgh to Washington D.C. where we’ll end the trip by partying with newly opened Pedego Alexandria. It’s going to be 10 fun-filled days cruising through some of the nation’s most amazing scenery and intriguing historic sites.

At the meeting, our fearless GAP leader, Dennis Bueker, handed out a printed itinerary and gave us more specifics of the trip. As a novelist, I couldn’t love it more that we’ll be spending time on a street called Keep Tryst Road. Everything about a ride like this nourishes the soul. I know the sites we’ll see and the experiences we’ll share will inspire me to write stories I never would have dreamed up otherwise. You could say my Pedego gives me more power to publish. It’s going to be so much fun!

To prepare for this 10-day ride, we’ll be lengthening some of our Sunday FUNday rides. We’ll try a nice long ride that leaves from our store in Seal Beach, heads south to Newport Beach, takes the Balboa Ferry to the island, zooms over the bridge and up to Newport Back Bay, circles Back Bay … and then retraces our path back to the store.

Anyway … regarding March. It’s a great time to look into Pedego bikes. As we swing into summer, business gets crazier and sometimes people have to wait for a back-ordered bike. But with a little advance planning, you’ll be able to join us on the bike paths this spring and summer. If you’re not sure about electric biking, stop by and take a 10-minute free test ride with me. I love every opportunity I get to ride out of the shop and tour the town on a bike. Try it once and see why we say …

Hello, fun!

 

Beth and Brian Black

Pedego GLB Celebrates Fifth Anniversary With a Party and a Parade!

You’re invited to join the fun at our anniversary party on Saturday, February 17 starting at 11:00 a.m.

Our schedule:

11:00 Grin ‘n Pin Ceremony

12:00 BBQ Lunch

1:00 Pedego Parade (sign up to join us, limited to bikes on hand)

2:00 Cake and Prizes

 

Party Time at Pedego GLB

We can’t believe that five years have zoomed by so fast. But when I think about it, a lot has happened since we opened our doors in 2013. During that first year, people had never heard of electric bikes, and they just couldn’t understand what all the excitement was about.

Now, they know.

We’re very proud of the fact that we played a role (and a roll) in informing the public about our bikes and building a community of enthusiastic POG members. What’s a “POG” you ask? It stands for Pedego Owners Group, and these folks are all about having fun riding their Pedego bikes together. Brian and I look forward to our Sunday FUNday rides when a lot of them come out and join us for a shared adventure on wheels.  They love to join our parties, too, so if you come to the celebration, you can meet some of our POG members.

You might be excited to meet members of the GAP Ride Group. They’re a very special group of 14 POG members who will be riding the Great Allegheny Passage (GAP) from Pittsburgh to Washington D.C. this spring. It’s an all-Pedego ride, and it’s going to be so much FUN. Meet these folks and learn about all the fun we have traveling with our bikes.

We’re so excited to welcome some extra-special VIPs, including Pedego co-founder and CEO Don DiCostanzo. Members of the Seal Beach City Council and Chamber of Commerce will also join us for this event.

What’s the Grin ‘n Pin Ceremony?

We know that riding a Pedego bike is a reward in itself. But most riders are amazed at how many miles they actually travel on a Pedego. They begin to rack up some pretty impressive numbers while having fun the whole way. At the pinning ceremony, we will recognize our riders with free collectors pins designating the miles they’ve ridden on their Pedego bikes. Bike bells will RING!

 

Remember, at Pedego GLB, we have more power to party. Join us, and you’ll say, “Hello, fun!”

Pedego Dream Rides — Let’s Plan!

Summer rolled by at full throttle. But around here, that’s okay. We make the most of our SoCal sunshine and ride nearly every day of the year. The bike paths are clear, the weather is sweet and the fun is on two wheels. And we need to remember that riding can be just as sweet (with a touch more adventure) when we take the bikes on a trip.

A couple weeks ago, we hosted a Saturday Seminar on “Destinations, Near & Far” that was an amazing success. Thank you to everyone who stopped by for breakfast and information. And I’d like to add a special thank you to Dennis and Gwen Bueker, who drove up from Escondido to share information on long distance Pedego rides. Boy, the crowd was so excited!

MUST-SEE VIDEOS

We enjoyed watching some brief videos of travels the couple and their friends have enjoyed on Pedego electric bikes around the country. Here’s one showing how much fun it is riding in Coeur D’ Alene, Idaho.

 

This video shows Dennis, Gwen and pals on the gorgeous Hiawatha Trail in Idaho. It’s a personal favorite of mine.

 

The New River Trail is also beautiful, and the video once again reminds us how different parts of the country can offer such a variety of scenic rides. This ride in Virginia is a true adventure!

 

And then there’s the BIG ONE. The GAP Trail, which is what riders call the Great Allegheny Passage. This amazing trail begins in Pittsburgh, PA and takes riders all the way to Washington D.C. via some of the most historic and beautiful scenery this country has to offer.

The exciting news is, Dennis and his team are planning to host a group ride on the GAP. We have several riders who are now interested in joining Dennis for this exciting adventure. Check out the video and see what kind of FUN is in store for those who go next June. If you’re interested in learning more, call the store at (562) 296-5782 and let’s chat about it.

 

Remember, on a Pedego electric bike, you have more power to explore!

 

See you on the bike paths (all over the  place)…

 

Beth

 

pedego_palooza

Pedego Palooza!

This post is for our POG — Our community of Pedego owners. It’s Pedego Palooza 2017!

First, thank you for choosing Pedego GLB to be your Pedego hometown community. When Brian and I started GLB nearly 5 years ago, we had a dream of building a community of Pedego riders to join us on fun rides around town and eventually on our travels with Pedego electric bikes. We’re proud of the community we have built. Just this week, a group of riders kindly showed some new Pedego fans the way to the local bike path. These rental customers were so delighted with our bikes, us, and our big-hearted community that they came back later with a delicious gift for our riders! We do, indeed, have the Pedego community of our dreams.

And so, it’s time to celebrate.

On Saturday, September 30, we’re joining the national POG at a huge party. It will start with (what else?) a Pedego Parade, as hundreds of Pedego riders leave from Pedego Headquarters in Fountain Valley to cruise down to Huntington Beach. From there, we have special VIP tickets to an airshow and a catered lunch! This is a FREE event for all Pedego owners who have registered their bikes with corporate and have RSVP’d on the Pedego Palooza website. While rental bikes are now allowed for this event, our reservations are presently sold out. We do have a stand-by list for anyone who wants to call the store. This is a Pedego-only event.

Note: A few Pedego owners asked to ride down to the event in Huntington Beach from Seal Beach. Brian will lead a group that morning from Pedego GLB. Please call the store at (562)296-5782 if you’d like to ride with Brian to this event. Otherwise, everyone is invited to meet Beth at Pedego Headquarters and join the parade!

Here are the event details provided by Pedego Headquarters:

Saturday, September 30th.

Bring your Pedego and spend the day with us as we ride from Pedego Headquarters down to Huntington State Beach for Pedego’s biggest owner’s event of the year!

Schedule of Events

10:00 AM – Behind-the-scenes tour of Pedego Headquarters
11:00 AM Check-in
11:30 AM – Ride from Pedego Headquarters to Huntington State Beach (6.6 miles)
12:00 PM – 2:00 PM – Catered lunch while airshow begins
4:00 PM – Ride back to Pedego Headquarters

​​​This event is FREE for all Pedego owners and $40 online to Pedego Headquarters for non-owners (plus rental fees, taxes, and other fees to Pedego stores). Ticket includes VIP entry to private Pedego area, catered lunch, and a complimentary ticket to the BeachFront Cinema’s screening of Top Gun immediately following the conclusion of the airshow. 

Register for your tickets today at www.pedegopalooza.com

 

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No More Lost Loves: Preventing Bike Theft

Guest Blog Post by Brian Ballard …

 

It was the end of the day on a Sunday. Beth and I were getting ready to close the shop. We had a row of Pedego electric bikes lined up in front of the store, all locked together with a long cable. As I walked to the end of the row to unlock the bikes, I discovered the cable was cut. The bike on the end was gone — it had been stolen! My heart sank. I was devastated. I took it personally and felt outraged. We’d  hosted a bike prevention seminar in the past, but the technology we have today was not yet available. And so the bike was gone for good.

In 2015, more than 250,000 bikes were stolen. On average, only 3 percent are recovered by police. Of those that are recovered, a lot of unregistered bikes never make it back to their owners. The San Francisco police department has more than 400 recovered bikes in storage that they cannot return to owners for that reason. They simply can’t find the rightful owners.

Very few cities take bike theft seriously. Most cities are forced to put nearly all of their resources into more serious crimes. Portland, San Francisco and San Diego are among the few that have devoted resources to bicycle theft task forces. One law enforcement representative stated, “We make it easy for them. The DA doesn’t do tough prosecutions for these criminals. All the thieves we’ve busted got probation. You can’t take six people off a murder to investigate a bike theft.”  This became the norm, as most bikes retail for less than $500. But when bikes valued at $1,000 or more are stolen, that’s a felony. So more law enforcement resources should be devoted to that.

Bike theft affects people from all walks of life. Some cyclists are low-income and do not own a car. They lose their only mode of transportation, which is devastating for them. And many of those who might afford a more-expensive bike cannot easily endure a loss either.  The problem is also very sad. Many bikes are stolen by addicts to support a drug habit. They will steal a $2,000.00 bike and sell it for $50.00 to get their drugs. The more we can do to prevent bike theft, the more we help everyone. And there is some good news arriving. For starters, you can be sure to follow the basics.

Below are a few tips to help you protect your bike.

  1. Index Your Bike: Several websites help cyclists register and recover their bikes.
  2. Insure Your Bike: Explore multiple options for protecting your investment.
  3. Lock Your Bike: There are best practices for locking your bike. Learn from the pros.
  4. Recover Your Bike: New technologies are improving the odds of recovering your bike. Indexing, insuring and locking your bike are all part of the equation. If you do track down your bike, be sure to contact the police for help in making the recovery. No bicycle is worth a life. Not even the thief’s.

Greater protections are arriving now! We’re excited about the new GPS tracking and phone alert systems that are just now becoming available to the public at reasonable prices. They won’t replace locks, but knowing where your bike is at all times, knowing if someone is touching your bike — in the moment it happens — and being able to recover it quickly, are going to revolutionize the battle against bike theft.

Ultimately, what I learned is this: We should continue to ride and enjoy our Pedego bikes. The risk of theft must not stop us. There is risk in everything. As they say, a ship is safe in the harbor, but that’s not what ships are built for. So we are working with our community to develop more ways to keep our bikes safe and to recover any losses. We’re hosting a bike security seminar in our shop on the last Saturday of July. So join us at 10 a.m. on Saturday, July 29, 2017, and learn the latest in bike theft prevention. The bike we save may well be yours!

Be sure to visit our Upcoming Events page on this website and RSVP so we’ll know to save a seat for you. Space is limited. RSVP now!

 

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National Bike to Work Week

Yesterday was national Bike to Work Day (part of Bike to Work Week), and I did not bike to work. However … I had the particular joy of riding at work. For this occasion, more than ever, I made it a goal to ride with store visitors as much as possible. It was my plan to participate in the bike/work national event in my own style. So each person who came into the store to learn about Pedego GLB was fair game for a fun “escape-the-paperwork” bike ride — okay, we called it a test ride. And as a result, yes, I rode a Pedego electric bike on Bike Day. And 24 hours later, I’m still smiling.

I’m thinking there might be a lot of people out there who just don’t know that they can ride an electric bike to work. They haven’t thought about the savings on gas, insurance and DMV, etc., which add up and make bike commuting a fine idea to discover this week. If you know anyone who would benefit by commuting to work by bike but is concerned about hills, headwinds, distances, sweat, exhaustion, etc. … have your pal give us a call. Pedego electric bikes are a game changer in many ways. Imagine arriving at work feeling energized and happy with a bounce in your step that lasts all day. Need exercise? Sure, use less motor on the way home. It’s as easy as that.

In the past, I worked from home and my bike commutes were actually errands run around town. I rode Gidget, my original Pedego bike, all over the map for all kinds of errands. When you’re sitting at a computer for long hours composing articles, stories and more, you need to get up once in a while to feel the wind caressing your face and the sun warming your shoulders. It just plain felt great to twist the throttle and speed away from life’s stress.

I guess I’m still commuting in my own way. And I really hope others will discover this amazing form of alternative transportation — the one that shouts out, “Hello, fun!”

See you on the bike path …

easter-ride

Riding in Springtime Sunshine

Seems like just the other day I burst out our front door, yawned, stretched, rubbed my eyes and looked around to discover a dry street and sun-dappled trees. “Yes! It’s here! Springtime!” I shouted while grabbing my bike. Spring has sprung. The long, wet winter that left our quenched West Coast in bloated hibernation has finally floated away. Sun’s out. Paths are good. Let’s go!

Easter was ecstatic. My older son, Sean, visited with his beautiful wife Ashli, and we enjoyed a leisurely family holiday rolling 30 miles on our Pedego electric bikes. We had so much fun that day showing the “kids” Newport Back Bay from the POV of a bike. Our springtime adventure included a cruise on the Balboa Ferry and BBQ lunch at the Balboa Fun Zone. No surprise — we came across two other families and one large group on Pedego bikes. It’s fun being a part of the POG.

Since my kids were visiting from the East Coast, they looked very pale from a longtime lack of any outdoor activities. Where they live, rain gives way to sleet, then to ice, then to snow. So I let them take a pass on winter activities, figuring it took enough grit just driving to work safely through multiple truly newsworthy storms. So I’m glad they came out here  — and joined us on Pedego bikes — to really enjoy their first warm weather of the year.

Of course, I cried the day they flew home. But we have to smile now, knowing that our bike rides continue with friends and fellow POG members. It gladdens my heart to lead two public rides each week: Tuesday’s Silver Spin 1-hour guided ride for seniors, and also the weekend’s Sunday FUNday, a longer social cruise that’s attracting a great group of fun-loving folk.

If you own a Pedego, come join us! Shake off the sleepy pall and breathe in a lungful of fresh springtime air. It’s so easy to do that when the headwinds are a breeze, right? And if you don’t yet own a Pedego, remember that test rides are free and rentals are affordable.

We just want to say, “Hello, spring. Hello, fellow riders. Hello, fun!”

See you on the bike path …