Might be worth checking out, especially for entry-level bikes:
STOP BY THE Mount Pleasant Farmers' Market Saturdays at Lamont Park (17th & Lamont Streets NW), and you'll see familiar piles of leafy greens and scrumptious fruit. You'll also find Ben West peddling a service of a different sort. The 35-year-old has been offering free bike tune-ups (10 a.m.-1 p.m.) since April. "It works perfectly for the markets," he says. "It's friendly, low-key, green."
What began as a help-your-fellow-neighbor effort grew to a weekly venture for the D.C. resident. It wasn't much of a stretch: West's day job consists of promoting cycling activism and events as the Washington Area Bicyclist Association's bike ambassador.
Got a dusty cruiser in your garage that may need some oil? Or a Schwinn with gummy tires? Cruise on over. The aim is to help folks get air in their wheels and oil on rusty bike chains, and to offer cycling route suggestions. It's a quick fix — not a comprehensive mechanical overhaul. (West recommends those with serious technical issues hit up a local cycling shop.) In the three-hour time span he's at the market, West and fellow volunteers put a positive spin on things for typically 30 cyclists.
No wonder the concept is quickly catching on: You can get a similar service at Bloomingdale Farmer's Market (1st and R streets NW; Sundays,
10 a.m.-2 p.m.), and West hopes to expand to the Glover Park (Wisconsin Avenue and 34th Street NW; Saturdays, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.) and H Street markets (625 H St. NE; Saturdays, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.) by the end of the market season. "It's happening pretty organically," he says. (Pun not intended.)
The one thing he'd like to see grow is his crop of volunteers. No need to be an expert — just have a positive attitude and be willing to get your hands dirty. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org if you're interested. Still not sold? "We get free blueberries," he adds.
(Posted By Kris Coronado at 12:00 AM on August 11, 2009)
Is Lamont Park = Rat Park? I'm not sure of our Rat Park Run location...b/c I've never made it to an official Rat Park Run.
Btw, I saw a seagull the size of a Golden Retriever in San Francisco in June. SF Pride.