By Anna-Claire Terry
Opelika has welcomed James Bros. Bikes back to its original home after 11 years in business and close to six in Auburn. The bicycle shop added to its Auburn location and opened in downtown Opelika this month.
Owners Danny and Amanda James said they noticed Opelika’s growing bike culture and decided a second location was necessary. Store manager Philip Darden added the business was also looking to expand its product range and availability. The Auburn and Opelika stores will carry different brands of bikes to offer more variety to customers. The shop also sales helmets, clothing and bike accessories. The shop can also perform full-range bike maintenance from basic tune-ups to complete bike rebuilds. James Bros. Bikes is set apart from other bike shops because they will sell beer, offering six different beers on draft, as well as bottles and cans. The purpose is to create a “hub” for cyclists and the community.
Amanda said she and her husband have always loved the close-knit community that is downtown Opelika. “We always kept the relationships that were formed in Opelika, and we’re really excited to come back,” she said. According to Darden, there is a lot of excitement about the opening of the shop. “It seems like every day someone pokes their head in to tell us how excited they are about the bike shop. I would never think to walk into a construction zone just to say ‘hi’, but the people here do, and it’s awesome,” he said.
Danny and Amanda plan to get involved in the community and contribute to Opelika becoming bicycle- friendly by donating a fleet of bicycles to Morris Avenue Intermediate School’s Bikeology program and helping teach the classes, hosting the the Bicycle Advisory Board’s meetings and becoming a community information center for all things bicycle related. “We want to be involved with everything we can be. We’re going to support events and organizations whenever we are able to do so,” Darden said.
Amanda said cycling has always been a passion for her and her husband. “I think both of us can say we love coming to work here. Cycling is a job and work, but it is a fun job,” she said. “We get to be a part of peoples lives and people doing what they love. Everything from a six-year-old getting their first bike to someone finding a love for mountain biking, we get to experience that with our customers. It’s a really great business to be in.”
A ribbon cutting for the new shop is scheduled for April 11 at 4 p.m. For more information, visit www.Jamebrosbikes.com or the store’s Facebook page. James Bros. Bikes can also be reached at 759-7555.