KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A Knoxville nonprofit is working to get everyone on a bike – not just the professionals.
Kickstand Community Bike Shop has a room full of bikes and tools, but they’ve also got something you can’t buy in a store: a heart for cycling.
“We just all like, we’re geeks I guess, we just like bikes,” said Paul Laudeman, the Director at Kickstand. “Kickstand is a non-profit community bike shop. Community meaning we’re connected to the community and we’re a resource for the community.”
The shop is 100% volunteer run and on a mission to put and keep bikes on the streets of Knoxville. Community members and local businesses donate bikes and Kickstand fix them. If a bike is beyond repair, volunteers use as much of it as they can.
“We partner with Paul and Kickstand to bring bikes to underprivileged kids in our school,” said community partner Ariel Allen.
That’s at Kickstand’s core: giving back. The non-profit partners with churches and organizations like Volunteer Ministry Center and KARM, which sponsor people who may not have access to other forms of transportation.
“It’s just really wonderful to see faces light up with joy,” Laudeman said. “We want you to stay on that bike. It’s no good if it’s sitting in the closet. You’ve got to be riding it.”
The vast majority of Kickstand’s bikes are given back through community partners. You can also buy from the shop. That money keeps the non-profit going by paying for rent and supplies.
Kickstand is also looking for volunteers. You can find volunteer hours and contact information on Kickstand’s website.