We thought you might be interested in getting to know our shop owner/mechanic/general guru, Charlie Whitney, a little better!
me: Why did you choose Colchester for your shop?
Charlie: It's my hometown! I could see the need and benefits of a local bike shop for this area.
me: How long have you been working on bicycles?
Charlie: I took apart and put my bike back together at age 12. Professionally I started at a bicycle shop at age 16. I've worked at shops in Burlington, Richmond, Atlanta, GA, Boston and Cambridge, MA, and Lake Placid, NY.
me: What do you hope your patrons notice when they walk into your shop?
Charlie: A friendly, hometown atmosphere. This is their shop, not just mine. I want them to know that here they can find quality service and helpful advice for solving their cycling needs.
me: What about the ski part?
Charlie: We love skis! I've been tuning skis since I joined the CHS ski team in 1985. We will be offering base hand tuning, waxing, and tuning accessories. We will even teach you how to wax your own skis.
me: I'm excited to hear that you will be a rental shop too! What kinds of things will you be renting?
Charlie: Bicycles (fat bikes, hybrids, tandems, and kids bikes) in summer and nordic skis, snowshoes, and fat bikes in winter.
me: What's up with the profile photo? Do you race?
Charlie: The picture is from a practice ride for the Mt. Washington Autoroad Bicycle Hill Climb, which I raced twice. I don't have any bicycle races planned at the moment. I guess I"m more of an enthusiast than a racer, but I've always loved bicycles. In terms of competition, I was always a runner, and also competed in motorcycle trials.
me: What do you ride? What's your favorite bicycle?
Charlie: I love my new fat bike! But I have quite the collection of older "mutts" built of pieces and parts from other bicycles. My favorite is a 1939 Columbia with modern alloy rims laced onto the original hubs. And I still have my first road bike which turns 30 this year and is still my go-to bike. A testament to how long a bicycle can last if you take care of it!
me: Anything else you want your fellow bicycle enthusiasts to know?
Charlie: I'm really looking forward to meeting you all and learning about what you like. Come on in and let's talk bicycles!