Crow’s Feet New Cycle Hub for Bend


Offering bikes, beans, brews and views, Crow’s Feet Commons is a new cycle-centric hub in downtown Bend hoping to help revitalize a problem spot near Mirror Pond and create a vital business and event venue for hard-core area bikers and outdoor recreationists of all ages.

“I call it a bicycle and skiing community center,” said owner David Marchi. “It’s a cool, hybrid taphouse and outdoor sports and backcountry adventure shop. If you need a road bike or mountain bike or backcountry ski equipment, then this is the place for you.”

Crow’s Feet Commons occupies a space leased through the City of Bend at the historic Rademacher House, a longtime troubled terrace beside Drake Park at the Riverfront Plaza, where a steady stream of vagrants, homeless persons and drug users had taken up camp, labeling it as a place to avoid. But that’s rapidly changing!

“It was built in 1904 and was slated for demolition by the city in 1994 to be bulldozed for a parking lot,” said Marchi. “In order to preserve the house the building was saved and moved to its present location by Arts Central, concerned citizens and historians, then donated to a non-profit organization to benefit the community.”

Arts Central operated their Mirror Pond Gallery there from 1994 to 2011 but encountered zoning and property tax issues. With the area frequented by criminal activity and ongoing arrests, it became an unsafe location and not conducive to booming commerce. Arts Central finally moved out and the city took the building back where it sat empty for eight months. They eventually put out a proposal for new businesses.

“We won the proposal and the reason why was because it was mostly to assist in cleaning up the area and getting foot traffic back and hosting an increasing number of community events.”

Marchi says the overall response since opening in November of 2012 has been very positive so far.

“I can’t help but be pleased with what’s been going on right now. The most challenging thing for me has been trying to clean it up and confronting the undesirable elements. For me, I get a lot of value out of hearing people say I’m creating a cool space for patrons.

“Sure, we still get people coming in under the influence, trying to cause trouble and I usually handle it by being as compassionate as I can. I don’t want people to leave but they need to respect the space I’m doing business in.”

Unfortunately, that’s the psychological challenge Marchi and his staff have on a daily basis.

“The cops can only do so much. Now there’s a whole revitalization spirit going on down here with businesses expanding all around us and we’re a big component of that new draw, so I’m really happy with that.  I want people to come on in and feel comfortable hanging out. I’ve got a great staff and word is spreading fast.”

Besides pouring over a dozen Oregon craft brews, Crow’s Feet Commons sells a killer lineup of specialty brand bicycles like the Colorado-made Moots road, mountain and cyclocross bikes.

“We also sell Chris King, a component manufacturer who now builds Cielo brand bikes.  We don’t have the $500-600 entry-level models here, we just don’t have the space for it.   Instead, we cater to serious, advanced cyclists and bike enthusiasts who are looking for a high-quality, prestige line of products.

“We sell outdoor and cycling sports wear by Endura, our staple line, but also have our own custom jerseys and t-shirts with our logo on them. We’re also working with some talented local artists to create a t-shirt brand to bring more attention to Crow’s Feet Commons.”

The shop name and philosophy symbolizes not only a welcoming commonplace environment but also the familiar crow’s feet lines on outdoor seekers’ eyes, worn as a badge of honor.  By having coffee and beer and outdoor events like movie nights, gear swaps and free live music it will hopefully transform itself into a vibrant location people can hang out at and be a casual, fun part of Bend.

“We serve Stumptown coffee, pastries and sandwiches sourced from local bakeries,” he added. “The beer menu is a revolving selection from local and regional breweries like Boneyard, Pfriem and Deschutes. Our buyer is great at sourcing things that a lot of places don’t have and people crave.

“Because we’re so small and we have limited inventory we can really tailor bikes to every customers needs with some smaller boutique manufacturers such as Pegoretti, an Italian frame-builder with a three year waiting list to order each hand-crafted frame.”

As more and more Bendites gather to explore and patronize this new hybrid enterprise, Marchi hopes to see his vision realized.

“My wish is for it to become more established this summer and keep on doing what we’re doing. I loved being part of the community here and making a difference.”

Crow’s Feet Common is open daily at 875 NW Brooks in Bend on the Riverfront Plaza beside Mirror Pond.



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Founded in 1994 by the late Pamela Hulse Andrews, Cascade Business News (CBN) became Central Oregon’s premier business publication. •

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