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Local bicycle shops remain open during COVID-19 pandemic

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LAFAYETTE — For the past few weeks, KATC has been keeping you informed about what's open, what's not, and what's considered "essential."

Usually when we think of what's essential, we think of groceries stores and doctor's offices, but have you thought about bicycle shops?

Nowadays, it's common to see empty streets but not uncommon to see people riding their bikes.

"We're riding more. Plus, we're seeing other people out all the time," said bicyclist John Claude Arceneaux.

John Claude and his dog Bella have been riding every day during the pandemic, which has put some wear and tear on the tires.

"The other day, I called a bike store to see if they were still open, and I said, 'I don't care if you're essential or not, but I have a flat tire, and I need a tube. So, to me, right now, you are essential,'" recalled John Claude. "And, they were open, and I was able to get a tube, and here we are."

That's where bike shops come in.

"I literally sold out almost all of my bikes within the first two weeks of being open," said Megan Arceneaux, owner of Hub City Cycles.

Hub City Cycles just moved to their new location on Jefferson Street early this month. During that time, business has been steady with dozens of purchases, deliveries and repairs.

"We are a lot of people's only means of transportation, so they need their tubes, tires, lights, everything," explained Megan.

Transportation isn't the only reason why the bicycle shops are considered essential.

"We gotta get exercise," said John Claude. "We gotta get out, smell the fresh air."

The bicycle shop owner believes the trend will continue.

"I think people are learning that if they put down their phones, get off the sofa, there's a whole world outside waiting for them," said Megan. "That is the silver lining with everything that is happening is that it's going to show people that they can spend more time with their families if they just step outside."