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BIKE SALE!

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It’s that super special time that you’ve all been waiting for, when we put the last reaches of our previous year models and demo bikes on sale to make room for all the shiny new bikes and colors that are on their way!

See below for a list of what we have in which sizes. Note that quantities are very limited — there are only 1-2 of each model listed — so if you’re interested in a specific one, get in touch ASAP. (List will be updated as bikes sell out.)

And, without further ado, here are the 2019 and demo sale bikes:

Sury Straggler 2x10 - $1299 (regularly $1650)

  • Size 42cm

Liv Avail Disc SL 2 - $1075 (regularly $1250)

  • Size Medium

(DEMO) Liv Embolden 1 - $1700 (regularly $2400)

  • Size XS and Small

(DEMO) Liv Brava SLR - $1650 (regularly $2050)

  • Sizes XS, S, M

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Bike Camping: Trask River Gravel Overnight

Ready for an adventure?

Thanks for all your interested in this event! Registration is now full. Stay tuned for future events…..

Gladys Bikes and Veni Vidi Velo (V3) are teaming up to invite women, non-binary and trans folks of all genders on an overnight trip through the Coast Range and Tillamook State Forest. This gravel-laden route will be a fun challenge, done with supportive community of folks who like to ride bikes and eat snacks!

This will be a no-drop community ride, meaning no one gets left behind. The ride to and from our campsite is approximately 50 miles and the route features approx. 4000ft of climbing and 60% gravel. Upon registration, you'll receive all sorts of information, including: a packing list, menus, route info and more.

Your registration fee of $20* includes:

  • Guided rides to/from basecamp

  • Goodie bag from Gladys Bikes

  • 1 nights of camping

  • Saturday night dinner

  • Sunday morning breakfast

  • Packing lists, group riding info, bikepacking tips and tricks and much more

*Owing to a generous donor, we have full and partial scholarships available. QTBIPOC are encouraged to apply. Please get in touch via hello@gladysbikes.com if you’d be interested in learning more about these.

— The Full Details —

When: Saturday June 8 - Sunday June 9

Hosts: Gladys Bikes and Veni Vidi Velo (V3), a Portland group that puts on community-based and volunteer led bike camping adventure weekends for women, non-binary and trans folks of all genders.

Participants: This ride is reserved for women, non-binary and trans folks of all genders.

We’ll be going at a comfortable pace and no one will be left behind, but you’ll enjoy this ride the most if you have some experience with bike camping/packing/touring and also some experience riding on gravel.

The Route: This is a beautiful off-road route towards the coast that winds along the Trask River, that is 60% on gravel and with 4000ft of climbing. It’s not the easiest ride of all time, but it’s fun, the scenes are great, the climbs are rewarding and the company couldn’t be better.  

For more info on the route, along with some commentary from folks who have done it, check out these write-ups from our pal Madi Carlson and from the fine folks at Oregon Bikepacking.

Note: We’ll be starting in Hillsboro, where folks can easily get to the starting location via the Max. We will be wild camping along the way; there will not be a campsite with services (bathroom, water, electricity, structures of any kind).

Gear: Please plan to ride a bike that you feel comfortable using with whatever bag/rack set-up you have for carrying overnight supplies. We’d recommend tires that are at least 38mm wide for comfort and traction on the gravel sections.

About the Trip Leaders:

Nicole Villegas (she/her) is the lead organizer of V3 and an avid bikepacker who is passionate about getting folks out and exploring on their bikes. She is an occupational therapist, coach and resilient soul, with exceptional skills in snacking and sleeping.

Mollie Futterman (she/her; they/them) is a bike builder and fitter at Gladys Bikes who loves all things bike, but her favorite ways to ride include carrying lots of heavy things, finding forgotten paths, and making it to the top of every hill.

To Register: Follow this link. Once you register the ride leaders will be in touch with more information!

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Bike Camping: Beginner Trip to Olallie Lake

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Want to give bikepacking a try with a supportive community?

Update: This event is sold out. Thanks for your interest! Stay tuned for future events….

Gladys Bikes and The Venture Out Project are excited to invite trans and gender non-conforming folks on a fun and supportive beginner bikepacking trip to Olallie Lake. This is a relatively easy route and great opportunity for folks who are looking to go on their first overnight bike trip, and also for those who have been bike touring before, but are looking for new friends to ride with.

This will be a no-drop community ride, meaning no one gets left behind. The ride to and from our campsite is approximately 25 miles and the route features approx. 1000ft of climbing. Upon registration, you'll receive all sorts of information, including: a packing list, menus, route info and more.

Your registration fee of $20* includes:

  • Guided rides to/from basecamp

  • Goodie bag from Gladys Bikes

  • 1 night of camping

  • Saturday night dinner

  • Sunday morning breakfast

  • Packing lists, group riding info, bikepacking tips and tricks and much more

*Owing to a generous donor, we have some full and partial scholarships available. QTBIPOC are encouraged to apply. Please get in touch via hello@gladysbikes.com if you’d be interested in learning more about these.

— The Full Details —

When: Saturday, June 29 - Sunday, June 30

Hosts: Gladys Bikes and the Venture Out Project, a non-profit that is committed to facilitating backpacking and wilderness trips for the queer and trans community in a safe and inclusive environment.

Participants: This trip is led by and reserved for trans and gender non-conforming riders.

The trip is ideal for folks who are confident bike commuters that are curious about bike touring, and also for those with more experience bike touring who are looking to broaden their community of people to ride with. No one will be left behind and we’ll ride at a comfortable pace together.

Route: The out-and-back ride is about 25 miles each way with 1000 ft elevation gain. It’s a beautiful route that will take us from Clackamas Lake to Olallie Lake with a mix of pavement and some gravel along the way, ending with camping at Olallie Lake Campsite, where there is swimming and some services -- including beer and ice cream. We will carpool out to the starting point.

Gear: Please plan to ride bike that will allow you to carry any equipment and supplies for camping overnight. Unsure if your bike is appropriate? Call or stop into the shop and we’d be happy to answer any questions you have. Don’t have the right gear (such as panniers, or other types of bike bags)? Let us know. We have people who are willing to share/lend gear.

Ride Leaders:

Travis Clough (he/him; they/them) is the Director of Trip Operations and Logistics for the Venture Out Project. Travis is originally from Down East Maine and currently resides in Portland, Oregon where he explores the high peaks of the Pacific Northwest. He loves mountains, snow, pine trees, and views that go on forever.  Just getting into bikepacking and loving it so far. He is certified in Wilderness First Responder & AIARE (American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education) - Level 1.

Grey Diation (they/them) is an artist and gentle soul who has been riding a bicycle since 2004 and has a lot of bikepacking knowledge and experience under their belt. From August 2017 until March 2018, Grey bikepacked across Europe from Sweden to Denmark, The Netherlands, Belgium, France, Ireland, Spain and Portugal on their first long-term solo bike tour and have been pedaling to places near and far ever since.

To Register: Follow this link. Once you register the trip leaders will be in touch with more even more information!

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Holiday Sale and Open House

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Join us on Sunday, December 16 for some good cheer and a special one day sale:

* 10-25% off clothing, accessories and gift-worthy goodies
* Super surprise discounts on ALL in-stock new bikes
* Free Gladys coffee mug with the purchase of gift certificate
* Hot cocoa, tea, cookies, good vibes, and just the right amount of Mariah Carey holiday music

Don't need to buy anything? Cool! We'd still love to see your lovely faces. So, come on by just to chill out, give us a high five and share a warm drink with your bike shop fam.

Hope to see you soon, friends!

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p.s. For the entire month of December, you can come in to snag great deals on our gently used demo bikes and 2018 model year bicycles, including:

* Liv Brava CX Bikes (gently used by Cross Curious racers, but ready for rides and races for years to come!) - 30% off
* All 2018 Models from Kona and Surly - 10-25% off

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Introducing the Transfer Fit

You know that feeling when your bike finally fits you perfectly, and you suddenly want ALL the bikes in your life to feel that right? Allow us to introduce the Transfer Fit.

If you've had a Basic or Complete fit with us, we can transfer what we know about your best fit to another bike so that it also feels awesome.

The details:

  • $50 for a 45min- 1 hour appointment

  • suitable only for transferring between similar handlebar styles. (e.g., a road bike and a 'cross bike, but not a road bike and a mtb)

  • available to anyone who has had a Basic or Complete fit at Gladys

  • the transfer fit does not include free follow-up fits, but has option to upgrade to another Basic or Complete fit if needed

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Yoga for Cyclists

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Join us for a bike-focused yoga class with our pal Tara Chowdhury! Tara teaches alignment-based yoga, a practice of training your muscles to support your bones and joints. In her classes, you will learn how to avoid unhealthy patterns that lead to pain.

Attendance will be capped at 8 people, so please RSVP to hello@gladysbikes.com to reserve a spot for yourself!


ALL THE DETAILS

Where: Here, at the shop!

When: 8:30am on Sunday, November 18th

Who: Welcoming for people of all abilities.

How Much: Suggested donation of $10, but no one will be turned away due to lack of funds.

What about mats? We’ll have a couple of extras just in case, but request that you please plan to bring your own.

A bit more about Tara: We got to know Tara through our Saddle Library program, as she tried saddle after saddle…after saddle. After finding that all of them were uncomfortable in similar places and ways for her, Tara decided to apply what she’d learned through her yoga practice to be more intentional about her posture on the bike to better align her body and, voila!, suddenly she started to feel more comfortable in the saddle and on her bike in general. She suggested maybe yoga-based alignment for bike comfort might be something that other riders might be interested in learning about too and we were like “HECK YES.”

When she's not riding her bike or doing yoga, Tara is a neuroscientist at OHSU studying why males and females are vulnerable to different mental health issues.

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Celebrate 5 years of Gladys Bikes!

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Gladys Bikes is turning five years old!

Join us for a party at the shop to celebrate, high five one another, scheme about plans for the future and hang out with new and old friends.

Other than our *delightful* company, here's what you can expect:

- A keg! La Croix! Snacks!

- Special 5 year anniversary caps for sale, available for this one night only

- Music curated by Miranda, who undoubtedly has the best taste in music in the shop

- An extra special super surprise cake made by customer, friend, and SUPER BAKER Jeniffer Tunay (if you saw the gingerbread cyclocross course she made a couple of years ago then you know this is going to be good)

- Maybe one of us will give a touching, rousing and life changing speech, but probably not

- We’ll have some sort of photo booth set up, because we want to see all of your lovely faces for years to come

- Other things we'll probably figure out the day before the event! (Just being honest...)

Hope to see you there!

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Join us for a FREE MTB Skills Clinic with Liv!

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Join us for a FREE Women's MTB clinic introducing the fundamentals of mountain biking with Liv Event Specialist and PMBIA Certified Coach, Casey Wytaske!

Learn how to make your ride smooth and safe while gaining knowledge of ways to continuously improve your riding. We'll work on skills and then hit the trails! This free skills clinic is open to femme, trans, women, and non-binary folx, all fitness levels, all ages (must be accompanied by a parent if under 18 - mother/daughter date? We think YES!).

What to bring: 
Your Bike**
Helmet
Gloves (If you got'em)
Water/Hydration Pack
Closed Toe Shoes

**It's best to learn on your own bike, however, if you need a bike for this clinic, Liv Cycling has you covered! 

Bikes available for RESERVATION include 2019 models; HAIL ADVANCED 1 (Sizes Available: S, M), INTRIGUE ADVANCED 1 (Sizes Available: XS, S, S, L), PIQUE ADVANCED 1 (Sizes Available: XS, S, L), EMBOLDEN 1 (Sizes Available: XS, S). 

If you would like to use a bike for this clinic, you must bring an ID, Credit Card and reserve a bike by completing this form:  https://goo.gl/forms/GQNeBmVddFJ8nPPH3

NOTE: Please arrive 20-30 minutes before the clinic if you have reserved a bike. 

We will meet at the Sacajawea Dog Park along NE Alberta Street, where coffee and donuts will be served (of course) as we set up bikes and get to know each other. After introducing some basic ride skills we will take a group ride over to Gateway Green to apply our new skills on the trail! 

Questions? Email us at hello@gladysbikes.com!

p.s. Want to support Gateway Green for making it possible for us to have this clinic in the city? We’re suggesing $10 donation to the trails. Visit http://www.gatewaygreenpdx.org/fundraising/donate to make your donation. (Not expected but truly appreciated!)

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WTF Surly Pizza Party!

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Dear women, trans and non-binary pals- 

You like riding bikes? How about eating pizza? What about having fun?

Cool! We like all those things too. And fortunately our friends at Surly Bikes do too. And so we're excited to team up with those fine folks at The Official Intergalactic Surly Regional HQ for an evening dedicated to riding bikes, eating pizza, having fun and celebrating y'all -- women, trans and non-binary folks who ride bikes, that is.

Here's the plan: 

Meet at Gladys Bikes at 6pm on Tuesday, June 19. We'll head out from there on a leisurely ride, ending up on Mt Tabor, where there will be pizza waiting for us. 

BONUS: All bikes are welcome, but folks who ride their Surly bikes will have the chance to win some extra sweet Surly prizes. So, get that lovable steel monster of yours ready to roll! 

Sound good? Good. See you there.

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Welcome to the Saddle Library, Ergon!

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Join us for a special edition of Saddle Speed Dating*, dedicated entirely to celebrating Ergon's new women's road and mountain saddles!

http://www.ergon-bike.com/en/article-neuheiten-2018.html

Come to try out the saddles, learn the basics saddle fit, eat some snacks and hang with some new pals. One lucky attendee will even get to go home with a FREE Ergon SM or SR saddle!

WHEN: Tuesday, April 24, 7pm

WHERE: Gladys Bikes at 2905 NE Alberta

HOW: Space is limited to the first 20 people, so be sure to RSVP to hello@gladysbikes.com!
 

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*The Basics of Saddle Speed Dating:

Get one-on-one time with many saddles in one night so you can QUICKLY see which one you have an interest in investing in for the long haul. Talk 1:1 with our Saddle Librarians about what you're looking for in a saddle and we'll help you pick out up to saddles to try for some quick rides. 

And then -- because no saddle, will feel perfect if it's not set up properly -- if you find your saddle love match we'll help you get the saddle set up at the right height and position to support your body.

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Customers, Friends

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It's easy to become friendly with folks who come into the shop. We're friendly, you're friendly, this is a friendly city, and we all want to get along and have fun together! But, it takes time to become real friends; you know, to get beyond any of the power dynamics that can come into play in any type of service setting, to create shared memories and experiences, and to know and appreciate each other as whole people with big, complicated lives that extend beyond bikes.

I feel incredibly fortunate to have built a lot of great friendships with customers over the past handful of years -- many of whom are some of the closest confidants in my life these days. (You know who you are.) And while there's no perfect calculus behind the messy process of building relationships (if there was, life would sure be a whole lot easier), here is my attempt at synthesizing how that sometimes smooth and sometimes laughably awkward transition from customer to friend happens:

Step 1: They come into the shop for some bike-related need.

Step 2: They come back in for some other bike-y need. You tell a (likely unfunny) joke. They politely laugh. 

Step 3: You recognize each other in the grocery store aisle, but both pretend not to see the other and instead intently study the label of the bag of Juanitas you're grabbing, because, what would you say? You don't actually know each other. 

Step 4: They come into the shop again. In addition to the usual business, you engage in some friendly banter and you laugh at each other's (un)funny jokes.

Step 5: You recognize each other in the grocery store and acknowledge each other's existence with an enthusiastic wave as you continue pushing your carts past one another. 

Step 6: They come into the shop on their commute home from work, or on their way back from a ride...just to say hi and chat. 

Step 7: You claim each other as 'friends' on various social media sites and 'like' each other's photos.

Step 8: They come in again and suggest that maybe you should hang out outside of work. You talk about this potentially happening for the next few weeks or months. 

Step 9: You finally find a time to hang out. You go on a bike ride together and spill your guts to one another. (There's something about a good, long ride that really opens you up and allows you to go deep. Know what I mean?) Or maybe you grab a drink. Or maybe you go out for pizza with your partners in tow. 

Step 10: They continue to come in the shop and continue to be a customer, but also something far beyond that. You see them at the shop, and equally outside of it. When people ask you how you met, you both reply "bike stuff".

Come to think of it, this isn't too dissimilar from making friends as an adult in general. 

-Leah

p.s. Yeah, I run into a lot (a lot, a lot) of customers at the grocery store. 

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The Slow Season

 
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Before opening the shop I drew out a detailed business plan, and through that I theoretically understood that it would take time before the business would be profitable, that things would start off slowly and it would take a while to build up a customer base.

But, let's be real: All the while I actually believed that I was somehow different. I would be that one in a million overnight success.

I harbored this unspoken delusion up until the day that I opened the shop...in the middle of October...the rainiest October we had seen in years...aka, not a popular or profitable time for bike shops...especially brand new bike shops that no one had ever heard of.  And so I would sit for hours in an empty shop, waiting for customers to arrive, every day feeling like I’d planned myself an extravagant birthday party that no one bother to showed up to. 

To deal with the special kind of shame that comes along with running a struggling business, I would put on a charade and tell people that this was all a part of the plan; that I wanted to open up during the slow season so that I could get my processes and procedures in order before entering the busier summer months. (I'm a pretty awful liar, but people at least pretended to believe me -- thanks for that.) In actuality, it was a result of poor planning and stubbornness. All businesses make mistakes in the beginning, and this was definitely one of mine. 

In addition to dealing with my own emotions during my first slow season, it was also tough because I had employees. All of my business classes and books had taught me that if my workers were't actively doing something productive (i.e. money-making) at all times then the business would most certainly fail and our lives would be ruined and Santa would no longer bring gifts to even the good kids (or something like that), and so I would create all sorts of random projects for them to do and assign them with a false sense of urgency. Even if we weren't actually busy, we at least needed to pretend at though we were. You know, no leaning, all cleaning. 

Again, we all make mistakes. 

....

Fast forward four years later, and I'm still making all sort of mistakes all the time. But, I'm also happy to report that I'm more used to the slow season and much more comfortable within it. People don't ride as much when it's raining, we don't sell as many bikes and we don't perform as much service. And that's okay. It's a part of the cycle (pun intended) of running a bike shop in this sometimes sunny and sometimes rain and gray town. I plan for it, I save for it. The business is prepared.

And so instead of needlessly worrying about the seasonal drop in business, I embrace it.  It's a great time for us to work hard on things that we can't get to during the grind of the super busy days -- brainstorming new ideas for classes and events, writing manuals,  hanging fixtures,  reorganizing and sprucing up the space -- and it's also a time for us to embrace the fact that each of us here is worth more than how much work we can get done over the course of an 8 hour day.

Sometimes the most important work we can do is to just chill out, slow down and have fun with one another. So, in addition to the various projects we all take on over the winter, we also take time to listen to our coworkers and learn about them as people, to talk more with customers and and build relationships with them, to take a lunch that's a little bit longer, to write silly blog posts, to break into a song when a jam comes on the radio.

Then, come Spring, we're ready.  We're not only recharged from having some extra time off to play, we also know each other better and are better aware of how to support one another, and ready to hit go and go into high gear.

So, here's to the slow season! May it be short, may it be useful, and may it be fun!

- Leah

(Side note: Typing all this out makes me realize how astoundingly lucky that all three of the people who were there to help me open the shop are still with me today. THANK YOU FOR PUTTING UP WITH ME.)

 

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Bad Ideas

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Around this same time every year, I try to set aside space for myself to step away from the shop to reflect on the past year of business and make plans for the next. I hole in up coffee shops, cabins, and at my kitchen table and surround myself with highlighters, spreadsheets, financial statements, scratch paper, books and an endless array of cups of coffee and tea. 

During these retreats, my first order of business is always looking at the dollars and cents of it all, combing through our financial statements to see where we did well, to look for places we struggled, and then to come up with strategies for how we could be more profitable. This is, after all, a business. And while responsible financial management and realistic budgeting may not be the flashiest topics to talk about, they are what keep our doors open, keep us serving our customers, and keep our staff well-paid. 

Let's be real, though: This isn't the part of retreats that I get excited about.

Though healthy financials are necessary and nice, I started this business with a mission in mind before profit, with goal of disrupting the norm by examining what was already out there, appreciating and learning from the good, reflecting on the not-so-great and ultimately attempting to do things differently in an effort to better serve women through this one local bike shop, as well as trying to play a small part in pushing the conversation about gender inclusivity in the bike industry as a whole. And so it's the second part of my retreats that really gets my engines flaring, 'cause this is the part when I get to look back on the past year and try to decipher how well we've done at working towards our broader mission as a shop. 

And as I looked back upon everything we did this year, I had the realization that what I was studying was the story of a whole bunch of ideas. It turns out that trying to re-imagine a business model and do things differently means coming up with a whole slew of new ideas - SO MANY IDEAS - in search of a good one.

To me, a good idea is one that:

(a) Addresses a need, whether or not people knew the need existed before,

(b) Is fun, both for our customers and for those of us who work here,

(c) Is inclusive of our community of women, trans, femme, gender non-conforming and allied folks,

(d) Makes our community feel more excited about riding bikes in some way, and

(e) Introduces more folks to who we are and what we're about here

With that definition in mind, I'm proud to say that we've had a lot of great ideas over the years -- from the Saddle Library, to the 'Cross Curious Club, and even cycling caps slathered in donuts in space. But, I also can't deny that for every good idea we've had there have been at least three times as many that have fallen flat. (Remember when we decided to have fresh baked goods at the shop every day? I hope not; that was a really bad idea.)  

Which brings me to this past year.

2017 has been filled with some really great new ideas -- the BikeAble bike touring series we collaborated on with Makeshifter, a new structure for our basic maintenance classes, some new bike brands in the shop --, but, well...this was also a year of more than a few flops, things that we thought would lead somewhere, that never really panned out.  And I'm okay with that. 

Though it's rarely fun in the moment, the sense of dejection that can come along with a bad idea is ultimately worth it: It means that we're still trying to to things differently, sometimes failing miserably, sometimes hitting one out of the park, but always trying. 

And so, coming out of this year's retreat, instead of dwelling on the ideas that didn't work out and committing to playing things safe(r), the overarching goal I have for the shop in the coming year is to embrace bad ideas and keep 'em coming. Because it's in that parade of mediocre, so-so and not-quite-right ideas that magic also appears. 

Here's to more bad ideas!

-Leah

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Ride with us to SPIN

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Join us for a bike ride to SPIN, Evalyn Parry's music-spoken word-theatre piece about 150 years of links between feminism and bicycling -- including the history of Gladys, the bike we are named after!

WHEN: Saturday, Nov 11. Meet at the shop at 6pm, and roll out by 6:30pm. 

WHERE: We'll take a slightly meandering route down to the show's location, Triangle Productions at 1785 NE Sandy Blvd.

BUY YOUR TICKETS HERE!

See you then!

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Summer's End Sale

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SAT, SEPT 9 + SUN, SEPT 10

Join us for two days of closeout pricing, sweet deals and bubbly beverages:

CLOSEOUT BIKE PRICING!
10-30% off of 2017 model year bikes from Bianchi and Liv (details on models/prices here: gladysbikes.com/stock-bicycles)

OOPS, WE OVERSTOCKED DEALS!
25% off Brooks Saddles (same day purchases only)
Garage sale pricing on misc parts & accessories

RAFFLE!
Stop by for a chance at winning a free overhaul this winter

OTHER FUN STUFF!
Fizzy water
Snacks
Tomfoolery

See you soon!

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1000 Butts

A Tale of One Thousand and One Butts

I have a confession to make: I'm not quite sure where the idea for a Saddle Library came from.

The process of starting this shop involved countless 1:1 conversations and group meetings with a lots of different folks in an effort to figure out what was missing in bike shops, what people wished they could find help with that just wasn't there. I learned a lot from these conversations (lessons that continue to guide how this shop operates every day) and from them, one especially strong theme emerged: People hated their bike seats.

Almost every person seemed to have a horror story. Some folks assumed that it was just supposed to hurt like hell to ride a bike, others talked about buying expensive saddles that ended up feeling like torture devices, that they then couldn't return. Others of trying to talk to a salesperson about where they were feeling pain, but feeling uncomfortable being honest.

And, somewhere in the midst of these conversations the Saddle Library started to emerge. It wasn't the result of one lightbulb moment, but rather the culmination of listening and sharing with all sorts of people. The Saddle Library is an idea that was built by the folks who still continue to shape what this shop is: YOU, our friends, customers and community.

No matter who or where it came from, though, it clearly resonated with a lot of different people. And last week we hit quite the milestone: Our 1000th saddle library customer. So now seems like a good time to reflect on what we've learned in the past 3 years of running the Saddle Library. Without further ado...

Lessons Learned from 1000 Butts:

1. Every butt is a special snowflake. 

We can measure your sit bones; we can do pressure mapping of where your body contacts the saddle; we can analyze your position on a bike. BUT, we can never be inside your body, feeling what you're feeling, and if we've learned anything from the working with so many people and their saddles, it's that every body responds to things differently. Even two people with similar body types riding on the exact same bike, with the exact same fit set up, wearing the exact same thing, often want things that are vastly different from one another.

Sure, there are some saddles that are purchased more often than others, but we still haven't seen any major trends emerge that points to any one-size-fits all solutions.

2. Some saddles are lip rippers. Others hurt "down there".

When we ask people about their saddle discomfort, some folks want to dive in an tell us exactly now the saddle is pinching their labia, or tell us that their balls are aching, or that their clitoris is feeling overly stimulated, and so on... And then others feel more comfortable talking in the abstract, preferring to reference their 'soft tissue' or (my personal favorite) their 'down there'.

While we certainly don't shy away from using anatomically correct language, we've learned that it's all about meeting people where they're at and talking in whatever ways make people feel most comfortable.

3. Saddle fit and comfort is not a permanent state.

While I'd love to say that once you find a saddle that works for you, then that's it, that's simply not true. Our bodies are in a constant state of change; aging, pregnancy, weight gain/loss, menopause (side note: I know SO MUCH MORE about what to look forward to with menopause from talking about saddles than I ever learned in any school!) -- injuries, and so on. As our bodies take different shapes, our preferences for saddles do to.

So, while we're psyched that we found you that great saddle last year, we won't be surprised when we see you back her in five years in search of comfort anew.

4. We sure do repeat ourselves a lot. 

Here's a sampling of some of the many things that the people who work at Gladys have said 1000+ times:

- On a scale of 1:10 everyone has a different level of sensitivity, so we can't know how you're feeling or experiencing something. That's unique to you.

- Bodies are weird!

- You're normal.

- Sometimes my labia get pinched too!

- Sit bones are only a small part of the story; the size, shape and sensitivity of our soft tissue has incredible variety.

- You deserve to feel comfortable.

- The goal is to be able to forget that you're sitting on a small, awkwardly shaped, often hard object that's shoved into the most sensitive place on your body and instead just focus on pedaling the bike. Sounds easy enough, right?

5. People are honest and good.

To answer an oft-asked question: It's rare that anyone ever steals a saddle. In the three years we've been at this, two have been stolen off of people's bikes and only one has not been returned by customers. True, sometime people are quite tardy in getting returned, but they (pretty much) always seem to come back. Thanks to all of you for proving to be just at trustworthy as we'd hoped!

With all that said, I just want to leave you with a thanks today. Thank you for helping us to create the Saddle Library. Thank you for helping us continue to improve it. And thank you for trusting us to help you (and your butts) get more comfortable on your bikes.

Here's to 1000 more butts!

Sincerely,
Leah

 

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Saddle Speed Dating

Saddle Speed Dating

This event is like getting to go on a bunch of first (saddle) dates in 1 night. Get one-on-one time with many saddles in one night so you can QUICKLY see which one you have an interest in investing in for the long haul.

When: Tuesday, May 23, 7:00- 9:00pm

Where: Gladys Bikes

Who: Anyone who is interested in getting a saddle/seat that feels better on their bike. We have almost as many 'male' saddles as we do 'female', all bodies are equally welcome.

How does it work?

1. Arrive promptly at 7pm for a brief introduction to your many potential saddle love matches.

2. Talk 1:1 with our experts about what you're looking for in a saddle and we'll help you pick out up to 5 saddles to try for 10 minutes each.

3. Because no saddle --no matter how pretty, expensive or aerodynamic-- will feel perfect if it's not set up properly, after you find your saddle love match you'll get a FREE quick fit with Gladys. During the quick fit we'll dial in your seat height and position to make sure it's set up to support your body as best as it possibly can.

Space is limited to 6 participants so that you get our full attention and the quality time you need with your saddles. To reserve your spot email hello@gladysbikes.com. 

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BIKE IT!

BIKE IT!

For the sake OF FUN AND BIKES

MARCH 2017

Four weeks!

Four challenges!

One pizza themed prize! 

The End-of-Winter weather can drain the excitement from all of us, but you know what? Games and pizza are always are the perfect antidote. So we’re channeling our favorite pizza-themed program from childhood (*wink*) and teaming up our bikes and our smartphones to get us pumped about the (hopefully) end of winter!

HOW TO PLAY:

STEP 1: Participate by posting a photo of yourself at the weekly locations on Instagram or FACEBOOK and tag #gladysbikesit

For example, if the weekly challenge was to ride with a friend along the Willamette River, here's what you could post:

Amanda and I crossing the Willamette River! #gladysbikesit

Amanda and I crossing the Willamette River! #gladysbikesit

STEP 2: Complete all four challenges and there’s a secret special pizza-themed prize for you! 

THE CHALLENGES:

We will post photo examples of the challenges on social media every Wednesday in March!

Week 1 : 3/1 - 3//7- Post a photo of yourself riding bikes with a friend!

Week 2: 3/8 - 3/14 - Post a photo of yourself in your rain gear (whether or not it's raining!)

Week 3: 3/15 - 3/21 - Post a photo of yourself on your commute (to school, to work, to...)

Week 4: 3/22 - 3/31 - CHALLENGE ROUND: Post a photo of you and your bike atop Rocky Butte, Mount Tabor or Powell Butte.

 

RIDE BIKES! HAVE FUN! 

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December Mixtape

DECEMBER 2016 MIXTAPE

A RETROSPECTIVE OF OUR MOST "LIKED" PHOTOS FROM INSTAGRAM ARTFULLY PAIRED WITH THE MOST LISTENED TO JAMS OF 2016 (!!) FROM THE STAFF OF YOUR FAVORITE SHOP. 

Thank you to everyone who donated, offered support and made it out yesterday for Strike Out By Bike! Together we assembled a mountain of supplies, homegoods and toys for Bradley Angle (an organization that serves people affected by domestic violence) and then loaded up our panniers, backpacks and trailers to deliver all of the goodies there by bike. More of this in 2017? I hope so. 

Thank you to everyone who donated, offered support and made it out yesterday for Strike Out By Bike! Together we assembled a mountain of supplies, homegoods and toys for Bradley Angle (an organization that serves people affected by domestic violence) and then loaded up our panniers, backpacks and trailers to deliver all of the goodies there by bike. More of this in 2017? I hope so. 

Gladys Bikes Staff Photo/Album Cover. 🌌 Come get weird with us.

Gladys Bikes Staff Photo/Album Cover. 🌌 Come get weird with us.

No big deal. It's just a candyland cyclocross course with gingerbread versions of the  @gladyatorspdx . Also known as: THE MOST AMAZING THING EVER.  #cookiecross

No big deal. It's just a candyland cyclocross course with gingerbread versions of the @gladyatorspdx. Also known as: THE MOST AMAZING THING EVER. #cookiecross

One last shot of this gal frolicking in the snow before she gets boxed up and heads out to her forever home in a warm, sunny southern state. ❄  #gladyscustombuild

One last shot of this gal frolicking in the snow before she gets boxed up and heads out to her forever home in a warm, sunny southern state. ❄ #gladyscustombuild

Hi friends, I'm here! If the weather gods smile upon us and it starts to dump snow for real, the shop may close early. But until then we'll be open for business with the heat cranked up, jackets and gloves stocked up and the jams playing.

Hi friends, I'm here! If the weather gods smile upon us and it starts to dump snow for real, the shop may close early. But until then we'll be open for business with the heat cranked up, jackets and gloves stocked up and the jams playing.

As the snow turns to freezing rain and the streets turn to ice, we're closing up shop early today. Stay safe and cozy out there! (Back to normal hours tomorrow.)

As the snow turns to freezing rain and the streets turn to ice, we're closing up shop early today. Stay safe and cozy out there! (Back to normal hours tomorrow.)

Happy, merry everyone!🌲

Happy, merry everyone!🌲

Three years ago, when we were first setting up the shop, I dropped this mirror on the concrete floor, immediately cracking one of its corners. Being budget-minded and exhausted at the thought of going to Ikea *again*, in lieu of buying a new mirror I decided to cover up the imperfection with the thing that everyone needs to remember every time they see their reflection. There are no mistakes, just happy accidents.

Three years ago, when we were first setting up the shop, I dropped this mirror on the concrete floor, immediately cracking one of its corners. Being budget-minded and exhausted at the thought of going to Ikea *again*, in lieu of buying a new mirror I decided to cover up the imperfection with the thing that everyone needs to remember every time they see their reflection. There are no mistakes, just happy accidents.

This dreamboat is setting sail today. 

This dreamboat is setting sail today. 

Today's guest mechanic says: "How can I be of service to you?"  #givethepeoplewhattheywant        #puppypandering         

Today's guest mechanic says: "How can I be of service to you?" #givethepeoplewhattheywant  

#puppypandering      

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November Mixtape

NOVEMBER 2016 MIXTAPE

A RETROSPECTIVE OF OUR MOST "LIKED" PHOTOS FROM INSTAGRAM ARTFULLY PAIRED WITH THE MOST LISTENED TO JAMS FROM THE STAFF OF YOUR FAVORITE SHOP. 

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You're welcome here. ❤ Thank you to the mother/daughter team who dropped this poster by the shop today and to @okoportland for printing them. You better bet it will be hanging proudly and prominently in our window from now on.

Patrick Bebey: The Coffee Cola Song

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*Sneak peek of our next custom build* If ever you thought there was a better color combo than teal and red, speak now so that I can tell you you're wrong. #gladyscustombuild

Heart: Barracuda

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WHAT A BOSS. Happy new bike day to Angela and her speedy, gorgeous (c'mon friends, this bike is ridiculously hot, right?), fits-just-so, does-it-all @somafab Double Cross Disc!#newbikeday #bosslife #gladyscustombuild

Paula Abdul: Straight Up

 

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Progress report on one of the most beautiful semi-custom builds we've ever had the pleasure of working on. 😍

Hamilton Original Broadway Cast: Helpless

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Let's all take a moment to revel in the glory of our new sticker design. 😍 #bedesignwork 

Stevie Wonder: Uptight

Need a little sweetness in your world? These are here for the taking! 🍩💖🍩 (The stickers, that is. The real donuts are for us.)

Prince: Starfish and Coffee

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None of you told us you wanted 90s style gold lamé, teal or hot pink caps. But we have a feeling you will. 😍

En Vogue: My Loving (You're Never Gonna Get It)

Coffee and bikes go together like _______ .

 

Taylor Swift: Blank Space

We take our name from the bicycle owned by Frances Willard, a woman who was a pioneer of women's cycling and, more importantly, one of the most vocal, effective and prominent suffragists of her day. And so we take a cue from her today when we celebrate our right to get out there, speak our minds and have our say. Happy Election Day! 🚲✔💯 #itsalmostover #election2016

 

4 Non Blondes: What's Up

 

New bike days are always fun, but they're especially great when it means introducing someone to the very first bike that's ever fit them. It can be hard to find bikes when you're a smaller person, but they're out there, we promise. Shout out to@intergalacticsurlybikes for making the Straggler in so many sizes (all the way down to 38cm!) so that so many bodies can ride them! (p.s. Happy new bike day Rachael!)

Justice: Fire

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