About Us

Family Bicycles, LLC

Theresa started Family Bicycles in 2008 after retiring from the corporate rat race.  Family Bicycles is an independent bicycle shop in Kansas City’s Waldo neighborhood.  At Family Bicycles we believe cycling should be fun and safe.  We sell a wide variety of recreational and commuting bikes for every member of your family–from 2 to 102!  Family Bicycles provides bicycle repair and sells all kinds of bicycle accessories.

Thank you for shopping with Family Bicycles. You have many options for your cycling purchases and we appreciate you taking the time and effort to come to our store. Family Bicycles is an independent bicycle retailer. We exist to make your bike riding experience Fun, Safe, and Joyful.

Family Bicycles believes in just riding your bike. Whether your ride is a mile to the ice cream shop with your kids or 10 miles to work or across the country; we don’t care—just ride your bike.

Our staff has spent a considerable amount of time choosing which bikes to carry in stock. We simply can’t carry everything, but we promise that we won’t just sell you what we have—but what you need. Our staff takes the time to have a conversation with each customer to figure out what kind of bike is needed. We might have to order it for you, but that usually doesn’t take long.

Family Bicycles has free maps of local trails and plenty of information on local riding available on our community shelf.

Every bike we sell is fitted to its new owner. Sometimes it is as easy as adjusting the seat height. Other times you might need a different size handlebar or stem. Everyone is a different size and so are bikes and bike parts.

Family Bicycles only works with manufacturers who offer product warranties. Most of our bikes have frame warranties for at least 5 years or more.

Our professional mechanics care about the performance of your bicycle. We take our time with assembly and with our tune-ups. We don’t guarantee same day or 24 hour turn around to make sure we have time to devote to each bike.

Family Bicycles—The Joyride store!


Theresa M. Van Ackeren, Managing Director

I grew-up riding my bicycle to and from school and on my afternoon paper route in Omaha, Nebraska. I learned early to “embrace the hills,” we lived in a hilly section of town and there were two or three hills no matter which way I rode. But riding was so much faster than walking.

I gave away my bicycle when I moved to the Kansas City area in 1989 and didn’t buy another until the late 1990′s. I slowly got back in the habit cycling for short distances in and around Lee’s Summit, where I was living at the time. In 2001, I moved to the Brookside area and kept up the short trips. I suddenly realized in 2005 that I really was going to turn 40 and really should do something about it, but wasn’t sure what. For lack of a better idea, I bought myself an expensive road bike for a birthday present and started riding seriously (well, as seriously as I could).

My dad and his partner, Carol, convinced me to ride the entire length of the Katy Trail in 2006. After completing the approximately 225 miles in five days, I realized I had just had the most fun I’d had in years. To celebrate, I went on several other weeklong bicycle trips. Dad, Carol and I repeated our Katy Trail trip in 2007; this time from St. Charles to Clinton. In the mean time, I hooked up with a great group of people, affectionately known as “The Flying Fish”.

In 2007, I decided to quit my day job (another birthday present!) and work to make bicycling accessible to anyone who wants to try (and even to those who don’t yet know it). I spent the summer and most of the fall sleeping in, riding my bicycle and drafting a business plan. I started implementing the business plan October 2007 and that, as they say, is how it all started.

Thanks for reading all of that. Stick around and come visit us to see the fun and the future of personal transportation in Kansas City. Let us know your thoughts; we want to know what you think about cycling, in general and in particular—cycling in Kansas City. We promise to answer; it might not be the answer you wanted, but it will be an answer nonetheless.

Bruce Homstad

In the mid-1980′s I worked at a small bike shop in the Phoenix-Metro area of Arizona at a time when mountain biking was just beginning. I had already been using my bicycle as a means of transportation, but with an invitation from friends, ventured out into the rocky trails of Usery Mountain Park in Mesa, Arizona for my first experience in recreational mountain biking. I was hooked!

A few years later I bought an awesome black road bike with the idea that I would enter some road races. I completed a few duathlons (run, bike, run) as I had some running experience, and, was a big fan of the brand new sport of triathlons (swim, bike, run).

I had the opportunity to experience the cycling culture in Seattle, Washington for several years. Now I know the first thing that came to your mind when I mentioned Seattle is the rain. But the rain did not faze the cyclists who rode year-round. Bicycling is frequently the first choice as a means of transportation in the Emerald City. As with most cities, limited parking, congested traffic and high gas prices are great reasons to choose your bicycle for that commute. For me, bicycling has also provided a means to justify eating Oreo cookies.

So here I am in Kansas City, a city with some wonderful trails, great neighborhoods, and local markets. A city should be experienced by bicycle to really appreciate all that it has to offer.

Please stop by Family Bicycles and say Hello

Surly

The newest member of the Family Bicycles team is Surly, the shop cat!  Surly came to us from the Westside neighborhood near downtown Kansas City after hitching a ride with Theresa’s sister Jess.  His duties include greeting customers and taking care of  security.  Just like the brand of bikes he is named after, he is tough as nails but a lover at heart.  Surly enjoys racing around the shop, sleeping on Theresa’s chair,  and assisting Bruce with entering items on the computer.  Stop in and meet the little fella, he loves to be held and cuddled!