was started in the winter of 1992 by Ryan G. Belanger
as a way to live his
life with purpose.
Being tired of always getting in trouble Ryan
discovered bicycling as the vehicle to a better life.
After thousands of miles riding and losing 50lbs and realizing his
physical potential Ryan
found a new sense of emotional peace.
With this new found direction and purpose Ryan
joy for cycling was something positive he
could share with others.
tried to reach out to the local cycling community, but was turned away because he
did not fit the ideal image of a cyclist, as a result no one in the bicycle business would hire this rebellious, 17 year old with no experience who eats too much.
So with out a job and his
new passion Ryan thought, "what a great opportunity to start a business?"
Driven to prove himself, the support of his family and a great deal of hard work he started Alternative Bike Shop in the winter of 1992.
printed business cards and set up shop in his
Mother's basement by painted the floor and putting up two sheets of pegboard and there it was his
very first bike shop.
then decided to tell everyone about his
big idea of creating a bike shop that was accepting of all those interested in cycling.
After relocating the shop several times to the current location and a loan of $750.00 he
had enough money to place his
first order of 3 Pink Mtn. Bikes and a few small parts on closeout.
For days all he
could think about was the big order from the bike company.
But the day it arrived there was a very serious problem, a 45 foot tractor trailer was parked in his
Mother's driveway and driver refused to leave unless he
took the entire order, which listed 21 bikes and some small parts.
This was too much to handle how could Ryan
, a junior in high school pay for $5000.00 worth of bikes and get this truck out of his
mother parking spot before she
The answer very logical, Ryan
called everyone in his
family and sold them a pink bike.
Needless to say the company intentionally over shipped the order and gave Ryan time to pay the bill.
Within two weeks, Ryan
sold everyone in his
family a bike and by the end of that year Ryan
sold over $75,000.00 in bikes and parts.
Eight years later, Ryan
had a business that was a very positive and busy place in the local community.
Working 100 plus hour weeks he
could not keep up with the demands of this growing business, feeling overwhelmed frustrated Ryan
was ready to quit, he
knew the business needed more then he
could give of himself.
knew cycling had a tremendously positive effect on those he
helped so he
was compelled to create a vision that others would want to embrace as their own.