FF03: Winter Wonders

Each Friday, we publish a post from the team at Full Cycle – beneficiaries of the Surly Masher. These snapshots of their work and the youth served will help you get to know them better, and appreciate the importance of supporting youth experiencing homelessness in our community. We also encourage you to visit Full Cycle Bike Shop in South Minneapolis to see their work first-hand, check out the shop’s inventory, and get set-up for winter.


As a bike shop in Minnesota, people often ask us “Does business slow down in the winter?” The answer is "no, it just changes."

December keeps us on our toes with unpredictable weather – hello, ice, wind, and snow. Customers still bring in their bikes for service (or studded tires), but repairs are fewer and farther between.

For Full Cycle, specifically, it means less test rides and repairs, but more shop projects, planning, fundraising, and programming with youth. It also means another round of interviews to hire the next cohort of youth interns, and a light peppering of ye olde influenza. And in the face of what sometimes feels like a never-ending to-do list, we do a good job keeping it light and fun. For example, here’s a sampling of Full Cycle’s collective tasks:

  • Meet Chelsea at the shop to receive 45NRTH donation
  • Check back with potential sponsors for Masher
  • Write blog post
  • Pack more Masher bundles
  • Drop off Masher packages and Thrivent thank yous at the post office
  • Make coffee, buy cream
  • Call intern grads about upcoming open positions
  • Call interns about Emergency Assistance at Pillsbury House
  • Get Carley’s contact info for Hopkins youth resources
  • What the H-E-double hockey sticks is bitcoin and blockchain — ask Blake
  • Give tour to neighborhood bike club
  • Have C. help figure out which bikes should get prioritized for sales floor
  • Schedule bike donation drop-off
  • Send thank yous to in-kind donors
  • Drop off diapers at food shelf
  • Invite friends to the Surly Masher on February 11
  • Take rubber recycling to Savage
  • Teach interns how to check in a bike for repair
  • Pick up taco ingredients for Pop-Up dinner at Nicollet Square (youth housing program), check in with Marisa about pizza dough
  • Restock the kitchen at the shop so interns have snacks before work
  • Work on food access grant for 2018
  • Pick up more outreach supplies—hand warmers, gloves, tokens, hats, bus cards
  • Talk to interns about opening up an acct at bank vs. credit union and building credit
  • Stop by drop in centers to promote free bike appointments and winter riding
  • Submit November paperwork and billing 
  • Check in with youth housing sites for any last minute internship candidates
  • Schedule interviews with internship candidates
  • Check in about getting food for next week’s intern graduation
  • Organize basement
  • Practice self-care: Get out and ride

So while the work load changes in winter, there's still plenty to do – especially when it comes to supporting youth experiencing homelessness during these long, cold, unforgiving months of winter in Minnesota.

About Surly Masher

Surly Masher is a winter bike event benefiting Full Cycle, a non-profit bike shop providing job training, food, resources, and support to youth experiencing homelessness across the Twin cities. Located in South Minneapolis, Full Cycle is a social enterprise of Pillsbury United Communities.

Taking place on February 11, 2018, Surly Masher is the FIRST-EVER collaboration between Surly Bikes and Surly Brewing – two iconic Minnesota brands destined for a good mashing! This family-friendly event welcomes riders of all ages and abilities to test ride the latest from Surly Bikes on a demo course at Surly Brewing.

To guarantee a surly experience, this winter bike event will take place in February – a time in Minnesota that nobody wants to be left outside. Please join Surly Bikes, Surly Brewing, and all of our sponsors. Help us raise money for Full Cycle bike shop.

surlymasher.com | @surlymasher | #SurlyMasher