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One of the most enduring and recognizable images in cinema is of a boy named Elliot riding a bicycle, pedaling so fast that he soars into the sky—aided by a certain extraterrestrial and some movie magic.

Steven Spielberg is one of the most popular directors of all time because he captures on the screen images, feelings and sentiments that are the commonalities of life.

And we’ve all dreamt at one time or another that if we pedaled fast enough we’d take flight.

When Brent was young, he had the same banana-seat bicycle from the time he was 9 to 15 (the age at which riding bikes became uncool),  If you look closely, you can still see a tiny scar on his right knee from a wipeout on the hilly gravel road behind his grandparent’s house.

Josh dreamed of a bike with a banana seat (and handlebar streamers, a basket, a bell, and a little pennant flag off of the back tire).  What he got was a hand-me-down bike from his brother who was decidedly less visionary when it came to accessorizing.

We thought long and hard about what we should get one another as wedding gifts. Should it be a vacation around the world?  (done that).  Should it be something frivolous? (not really in our DNA).

So we ultimately decided on getting bikes.

As we love the idea of all things “heirloom”, we wanted to get quality bikes that would last the rest of our lives, and after some research we found something that was the exact mix of modern and vintage.  Functional and well-designed.

In 1895, Ignaz Schwinn, a German immigrant with some bike-building experience from back in Europe, founded the Arnold, Schwinn & Company with his partner, Adolph Arnold, a meat packer and fellow German-American. Headquartered in Chicago, this new company was in the heartland of the American bicycle business where 30 factories turned out thousands of bikes each day. By 1900, American factories made a million bikes a year.

He probably would have never thought that the company he founded would one day build a completely sustainable bicycle with bamboo handles, a frame molded out of flax, and a motion-powered electricity generator that makes the entire bike glow from within at night.

If you see us on the hills of Sharon Springs, please take a wide arc around us.  It’s been a while since we’ve done this.

But we feel comfortable that this is the perfect vehicle for us to ride off into the sunset…or just take a little trip over the moon.

 

 What was your childhood bike?  Share your story with us in the comments section below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • By: Holly

    My first bike was an “english racer”.red,white, and blue with streamers on the handles and white tires.We lived on an Air Force base in Missouri and the school was by one of the guard shacks so we didn’t lock our bikes.Nothing ever happened to my bike until one day I came out at the end of the day and in place of my bike was my little brothers junky old bike.Memories.

  • By: Torrie Vail

    My first bike was a men’s 10 speed, bought at a police auction. Not the best way for a 7 year old girl to learn, but I still remember the whole family biking together through our town. Very fun!

  • By: Patricia Friesen

    A brand new blue Schwinn! this was my first bike and it was a brand new one…not a “hand me down”!!

  • By: Marysue Feltman

    Oh my gosh, y’all…those are spectacular! Just gorgeous! I’ve never seen anything LIKE that! Wishing you miles of smiles and fun and joy as you ride throughout the countryside!

  • By: Centralia Heart

    My childhood bike was a blue “English racer”. At that time, bikes were all very hefty with thick wheels and fenders. The “English Racer” was a very thin bike. I had a fake “coon tail” tied to it. The tail was pink, white and blue.

  • By: ConnieW.

    BTW, I forgot to mention my purple Stingray had streamers coming from the handles, a bell on the handlebar by the right handle, a white wicker basket in front, (I think I had Josh’s dream bike, LOL), and we usually had cards or cardboard clothes-pinned to the wheel frame so the spokes would hit them as we rode. We thought it sounded like a motorcycle, LOL!! I usually had the basket off unless I was going to pick up a couple of things for my mom or mamaw at the grocery down the block. I felt like it slowed me down, God forbid! I am 58 now, and dearly wish I still had that beloved bike. My best friend and companion for many years. I swear I’d still ride it! I’m sure the banana seat would not feel as comfortable as it used to, though! It would REALLY be like sitting on a banana! There are a lot of things I wish I had kept from my childhood. They would be pretty valuable now, but would never equal the sentimental value. Ahhhh, memories………one of the best things in life.

  • By: ConnieW.

    My childhood bike was a beautiful shiny purple Schwinn Stingray with a metal-flake-look banana seat, and I was on it non-stop during summer vacation from sun-up till sun-down, only stopping long enough for some occasional iced Koolaid in brightly-colored aluminum glasses, as I sat in the swing listening to the gentle tinkling of our $1 glass Chinese dime store chimes ….or to join the neighboring kids in a game of softball on the empty lot down the block where a house had been torn down years before….or to play in the sand where an apartment building was being built at the end of the block. Around and around two blocks I would go, flying like the wind, and there was this old man in a hospital bed who was always in the front window of one of the houses down our block, lying there propped up and facing the window so he could watch the world outside that he could not join…..and we would wave and smile at each other every time I passed until the day came that he was not in the window anymore….nor his bed, and a black wreath appeared on the door as neighbors, friends, and relatives of his family came and went with food. I did not know him, but his daughter told my grandmother that he always got a jolt out of watching me fly by on my bike, and would laugh and tell her how fast I could go and that I always waved and smiled at him as I sped by. He told her when he gone that he wanted me to have something, and she gave it to my mamaw to give me, as I was in school. It was a very heavy antique toy, (cast iron), of an old Chinese man riding in a swan carriage, and if you rolled it, the little man went up and down. She said I shouldn’t play with it, just to set it somewhere to look at…..that it was valuable, and would get more valuable the older I got. Mamaw told her she should keep it, he was her father, and she said no, he left her a house-full of antiques, and he wanted me to have it, so that’s what she wants, too. I liked it, but didn’t FULLY appreciate it until I was grown and married and more interested in history and antiques. I am told the swan carriage is supposed to be flying the little old Chinese man up to Heaven. That makes it even more valuable to me, as I now understand it is symbolic of the old man lying in the window waiting to be taken to Heaven. I have no idea of its monetary value, but it is valuable to me beyond whatever that could be, because it brings back memories of a very sweet, thoughtful old man who died in his front window watching the world fly by, while he himself awaited his turn to fly.

  • By: Beverly Nan Murphy

    We’d left the tidal river and fields of Kennebunkport for a city 3′rd floor walkup in Cambridge, MA. I cried for weeks and a Red, white and blue Roadmaster ladies special arrived up on the 3rd floor. It had an enclosed bell box within the the front structure and a huge headlight on the front fender. There were matched colored streamers from the handlebars and a playing card through each wheel for that plutter sound. I would bounce that 60 pounder down the 70 stairs (I was 8) and rode the length of Williams Street, eventually flying with both feet on the handlebars. Getting it back up was the challenge but, I never missed a day. Think it was a Schwinn and loved dearly. No comparison to the beauties you share. True art pieces. SO happy for my ‘Boys”. luv,luv,loves. : )

  • By: Robin

    Gorgeous bikes! I treasure the memory of my parents’ gift – a red Schwinn. I rode it from age 9 right up to when I left for school. You live is such a beautiful area – it’s great that you’re going to be able to enjoy it even more on bikes! Love to you both and happy wedding!

  • By: Suzanne Koba

    Such wonderful wedding gifts to each other. I, too wanted an ‘old fashioned’ bicycle, got a pink Schwinn. I do have a problem with it and hence fall off of it a lot. It doesn’t have brakes that when you back pedal it engages the brakes. They are on the handle! Your bikes are gorgeous and so glad you also have the helmets. Must say it took me a while to get used to wearing one since growing up, for me anyway, there were no such things as bike helmets. Enjoy your wedding day, may your days be filled with many bike rides with no crashes or falls. Luv ya’

  • By: amber berger

    Hi Boys, I miss you on the telly, since cablevision is not showing your program I am not happy. My first bike was a Roadmaster, kelly green,whiite & silver. But, first I had to know how to ride one. So every Saturday, I would go to the bike store and rent a bike. I finally learned, and that Christmas I got one. I road it to death, it gave me so much independence, places I could get to and back saving alot of time. Put the card in the spoke to make a funny sound. Rode the handle bars, and even had a basket for shopping. I gave it to my cousin, years later and I feel somewhere on Long Island, the wheels are still spinning.

  • By: Rita Tellier

    My childhood bike was also a Schwinn. My grandparents bought it for me and it was brand new. My brothers all had hand me downs. I was very spoiled. And still am by my husband of 44yrs-6months-21days. I wish I had the courage to ride a bike today but I am so afraid of falling. O well. Please put MANY photos of your wedding and much happiness to you both.

  • By: MSS

    Please be sure to post wedding pictures or video. Wishing you both a lifetime of happiness.

  • By: Sheilah Buettner

    I had the coolest tricycle that ever was, but my first big-girl bike was also a Schwinn. It was white with mauve trim . My very first time on it as soon as my Daddy let go and I was on my own I made a beeline right into my Mom’s rose bushes and wiped out! I finally got the hang of it (my poor Daddy probably despaired that I was ever gonna get it before that finally happened) and you couldn’t keep me at home anymore. It was like my ticket to freedom. I loved that bike. I still remember that first bike ride day and the day my Dad finally turned me loose and I didn’t crash like it was yesterday. He was so proud. My Dad’s gone now, but thinking about those days has brought him back for just a few minutes. Thanks for the walk down memory lane. Enjoy!

  • By: Kathy

    When I was little I was oneof 6 siblings and we had one bike to share. Since I came later in the line by the time I was old enough to go biking riding on my own (11)my older brothers weren’t interested; so I had plenty of time to make a 10 mile trip from my home in Valley Stream to Long Beach
    Much later when I think we were buying my daughter her third or fourth bike I said you know does she really need another bike I never got my own bike. So a few weeks later my husband took me for a bike. by the way your bikes are beautiful!.

  • By: Cindy

    What stunning and gorgeous bikes! Congrats again! My favorite bike was my Schwinn. I was in high school and used it regularly. However, my worse bike memory was riding on the handlebars of my father’s bike. I was about 5 yo in the early ’60′s and got my ankle caught in the spokes. Ouch!

  • By: Denise

    your bikes are beautiful! My childhood bike was a Huffy, 26-in., TURQUOISE!!!! with a wire basket, white seat and white handle grips with neon orangey-pink streamers!!! Loved it and have always dreamed of another one…..

  • By: starrling

    I had a purple “stingray”-type bike with the banana seat and a white basket on the front. My mom put it together, though, and not being very handy, it had certain flaws: the handlebars fell off nearly every time I rode it. I kept a small pair of pliers in the basket at all times. ;)

  • By: Joan

    Loved the bikes. Great gifts and where you live plenty of hills for exercise in the “Valley” Can’t wait to come home and see the new store. See you in the fall if not sooner.

  • By: Cathy Runkle

    Your bikes are gorgeous! Schwinn Co. made the first “Banana” seat bikes… They were inspired by the “Chopper Bike” craze going on in Southern California. So it only seems fitting that you got Schwinns. When we were at our cabin recently we decided to go on a “get lost” tour. We knew the way to Sharon Springs so we decided to “get lost” from there. We went through your town, and headed North on Route 10 and then just started making random turns. WHOA you have some steep hills around there!. The same is true down by our cabin… We got lost miles away. (Still came back for lunch at The Black Cat and to stop in at the new Merchantile.) You boys are ambitious! Both with you business and those bikes! Just remember the Vistas are Fantastic! I know I keep saying it…but Wishing You the Best on Your Upcoming Nuptials!

  • By: Stacey Ronczy

    Great Gift for each other! They are pretty spiffy looking. As it pertains to the wedding, any chance of a live-stream so those of us that can’t be there in person can still participate in your day?

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