WASHINGTON, D.C. – Two Bemidji businesses were recognized by the League of American Bicyclists as bronze-level Bicycle Friendly Businesses for promoting cycling.
The Bike Guy Ski and Bicycle Shop and Cabin Coffeehouse and Café each received awards.
The businesses were among 71 businesses named in 27 states.
“Businesses may be the engine of our economy, but more and more are realizing that the bicycle can be a powerful catalyst for in-creased profits, reduced health care costs, happier employees and more customers,” said Andy Clarke, President of the League of American Bicyclists, in a news release. “Companies large and small are voting for a more bicycling-friendly America and making significant contributions to our economic growth by promoting healthy, sustainable transportation.”
The Bike Guy Ski and Bicycle Shop encourages bicycling as an easy option for transportation and provides amenities such as full service with same day and overnight repair times and incentives such as information and maps for Bemidji visitors.
“Bemidji and the surrounding area offer something for any type of cyclist,” said shop owner Kirby Harmon.
Cabin Coffeehouse owner Noemi Aylesworth said the award is an honor.
“We look forward to working towards a higher award and challenge other Bemidji businesses to become a Bicycle Friendly Business,” she said. “Embracing the bicycle community has been very good for business. Tourists as well as community members spend money.
“Economically, it is a wise investment to make your business desirable to cyclists – they are loyal patrons,” she said. “We encourage bicycling as an easy option for transportation and recreation. We provide amenities such as displaying local trail maps, offering bicycling pamphlets, donating snacks to riders during local bike events. We have had incentives for cy-cling customers such as discounts on food and beverages when arriving by bicycle. We are a strong promoter of on street bicycle parking.”
Moving forward, the honored pair of Bemidji businesses will have access to a variety of free tools and technical assistance from the League to become even more bicycle-friendly.
To apply or learn more about the BFB program, visit the League online at bikeleague.org/businesses.