Lots of cyclists headed to today to help celebrate its first day in a new location at 1824 University Avenue, just west of Martin Luther King Jr. Way. The Berkeley branch of the retailer, which has over 95 stores in 18 states, moved from a smaller space on San Pablo Avenue in Berkeley.
To mark the occasion, the store announced giveaways and discounts now through Sunday. The first 100 customers each day on Friday, Saturday and Sunday receive a $20 gift card. Anyone can bring in a used bike tube for recycling and get a $5 gift card. In addition to getting a 15 percent discount off of any one item of their choice, customers can spin a prize wheel for more gift cards and other freebies.
This morning was busy. The store opened at 9 a.m. and manager Jon Mason described “a line reaching around the corner” for the gift cards. Most of the customers were regulars from the San Pablo location.
While many Berkeley residents swear by small shops and independent bike builders, Mason said Performance Bike builds its clientele around customer service and value.
“I get that people want to buy local,” Mason said. “I come from a commercial fishing family, so I know about being a locavore.”
Mason pointed out that the Berkeley shop added 10 new jobs in moving to its larger space and that the shop has helped to encourage local cycling through club nights and support of school and other local teams. Mason, who rides cyclocross for Rock Lobster in Santa Cruz, transferred from the San Pablo store along with the San Pablo staff.
Doug Smith, a regular customer from the old location, spun the prize wheel four times and won four water bottles while waiting for his bike to be tuned. He filled the remaining space in his shopping basket with socks, gloves and other paraphernalia while his dog Kylie made friends with other human and canine visitors.
“I don’t really need anything, but here I am,” said Smith. “The main reason I like Performance Bicycle is they offer really good value.”
Performance Bike offers brands including Fuji, the Germand brand Focus (“my go-to brand in the store, because of its great attention to detail,” said Mason), its own Scattante brand as well as trendy Schwinn beach cruisers and the like. The shop has mechanics on duty seven days a week from open to close and offers a no-risk guarantee on all online, phone or in-store purchases.
The University Avenue store has free parking in back for about 10 vehicles.
1824 University Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94703