Golden Saddle Cyclery – The beauty lies in the community.

translated from original text by Circles‘ own Toyoshige Ikeyama

“Golden Saddle Cyclery, it would seem is closing”
It was a while ago that I heard this unlikely news. It was rumored that the owner of the building changed and that renovations were to be carried out, and as a result of these factors, the decision was made to close the shop.

Golden Saddle Cyclery is a bicycle shop that represents the United States, no, the world, with all the best characteristics of what a shop should be. There is no doubt that it has had a great impact not only on Circles, but on many other shops in countries around the world. At first, the story of such a shop closing down seemed to be like a bad rumor you don’t want to believe, but as the days went by, it became more and more realistic, and the date for the closing party was decided.

First of all, GSC is still open and is scheduled to close completely in December. “We want you to have the full experience of what GSC is all about, with as many products as possible,” said shop manager Kyle.

Three days full of events such as rides, parties, SimWorks USA & OuterShell POP UP were planned.

I hadn’t been to the US for the past three years due to the pandemic, but with an invitation from SimWorks USA’s Rie, I decided to go to the US, super last minute to send GSC off in their final moments. Of course, I didn’t tell anyone that I was going to the party.

After meeting up with Rie at the site, the next morning we went and participated in the #TGSCIFride This is their regular Friday ride every week. I have participated in it several times in the past, but everyone is welcome, of course, with a wide variety of rides planned every week. #TGSCIFride If you look at the hashtags, you can see the diversity. And this time it was a special ride to coincide with the closing party. Excited as we headed to GSC, an unimaginable number of people from all over California and even some from the East Coast had gathered to send the shop off in style. I think there were probably 150 people. It’s easy to see how many people loved GSC.

Everyone will share the surprise visit and the joy of meeting again after a long absence. The last time I visited GSC was in 2019. It’s been 3 years since then, but there were some familiar faces, and newcomers in the past 3 years, and I could feel the fresh air. Of the rock climbers I personally followed Ashima ShiraishiちゃんIt was almost as much of a surprise to meet her than my own surprise visit to GSC.

When it comes to riding with 150 people, it’s like critical mass until you get through downtown. And if you go through downtown, you can connect singletrack and dirt and enjoy a route unique to Los Angeles called urban + dirt. This mix feels like an appropriate ride in this city.

Saturday after the ride is the closing party. The excitement just kept building during the day, and it carried in to a memorable night. Therefore, I didn’t take any pictures of these hijinks, so everyone’s in the clear. GSC’s number one party leader, Jimmy, seemed to be dancing until the early hours of the morning.

On the final day, Sunday, SimWorksUSA and OuterShell will hold a joint POP UP. Actually, both SimWorksUSA’s Rie and Kyle from OuterShell originally planned to travel to the East Coast, but due to the closing party at GSC, they decided to change their plans and hold this monumental POP UP sale.

OuterShell Kyle had a lot of fun at the party the day before, so there was a touch of hangover in the air, but as expected, the store was so popular that customers were rushing to get there early, just after the opening, looking for bags.

Former ALL-CITY and current brand owner Jeff of WILDEBIKESジェフ who came from Minneapolis for this closing party, bought a set of 26″ Homage tires. “I’m going to install them on an Old Bridgestone ATB.” he says. Jeff is a man who has been synonymous with supporting local bike shops since his early ALL-CITY days.

SimWorksUSA has held Pop-Ups at GSC many times, and it’s here that we often encounter a lot of customers who are very encouraging of our efforts to manufacture our products in Japan. I strongly feel that they are happy to use our products and support our business. It’s through these interactions, I am reminded that we should be more proud of the fact that we are manufacturing in Japan, and that it makes us unique and special in what we do.

Three days passed in the blink of an eye, and it was finally time to say goodbye to everyone at GSC.

I always keep an eye on what they have to say through the internet, and all the bikes offered by GSC are always cool, and the staff members have their own styles, and I’m constantly inspired by them. The strength of the community.” It seems so simple, and yet not everyone can do it. They make it seem effortless and inevitable.

I was talking about this with Kyle, but every time I go to GSC, I always think that everyone is sharing good vibes through the common language of bicycles, regardless of age, gender, or race. . If you come here, you will definitely feel a strong sense of security that there are friends who will welcome you warmly. The creation of this community is the mission of our bike shop, and I think they have truly understood the importance of this and have set an example for all of us.

Unfortunately, the wonderful store called GSC will be gone, but the community that exists around it will never disappear, and I can only imagine that it will flourish and express itself in a new dimension.