It will occupy former Bonfire Grill location
Erik’s Bike Shop closed its current location at 1278 Town Centre Drive on Sept. 20, so it could move into a larger spot at 1555 Cliff Road closer to local cycling draws.
The 7,000-square-foot site, which has set empty since May 2020 when Bonfire Grill restaurant closed, will undergo many modifications to turn it into the open concept store with racks of bicycles, snowboards and accessories.
The building was originally a video rental store in 1995, but while movie watching has changed at lot over the past 26 years, cycling still is mostly about one person, two wheels and an endless stretch of horizon.
While the COVID-19 pandemic led to the closure of many restaurants like Bonfire, bicycle and snowboard sales have been on the rise as people have headed outdoors for recreation.
In 2020, $29.5 billion was spent on bikes and accessories, and increase of 17% or $4.5 billion in 2019, according to data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Bicycle sales reportedly continued strong into 2021. Some shops have struggled to keep inventory in stock, as supply chains have been disrupted due to the pandemic.
Erik Saltvold, who in 1977 started the business that has grown from one shop to 15 Twin Cities locations and stores in seven Midwest states, told the Eagan City Council he is excited about the move.
One reason was to be closer to Lebanon Hills Regional Park, which has become a magnet for mountain biking. Lebanon Hills has 12 miles of singletrack riding, along with bike paths for recreational riders.
The new location is also right along paths in Eagan that can lead one in many directions, including toward open roads to the east in Inver Grove Heights and south to Rosemount and beyond. Erik’s notes that Afton Alps and Welch Village are nearby for skiing and snowboarding.
Saltvold, who started the business with money saved from his paper route, opened his first location in Richfield at age 18. His entrepreneurial spirit lives in the shops, which are staffed with experts in bikes, boards, gear and repair.
Erik’s has a full range of bikes for road, mountain, electric, youths and more, along with apparel and gear.
The shop stocks skis, snowboards, and winter apparel and gear from mid-October through February.
It also has a service department to repair all brands of bikes, skis and snowboards.
More information is at eriksbikeshop.com.
Tad Johnson can be reached at email@example.com.