So, what does the bicycle co-op do?
The co-op is about helping people help themselves. The co-op provides a central place for people to come to rescue bicycles and learn how to fix and maintain them. The volunteer mechanics do not fix bikes for people; they help guide members who are working on their own bicycle projects. The co-op also works for bicycle advocacy, and organizes rides, social events, and contests. Most importantly, we concentrate on empowering people, getting them on bicycles, and having fun.
The MoBo Bicycle Cooperative is a non-profit volunteer-run cooperative dedicated to making cycling accessible and practical to everyone in the greater Cincinnati area. We build community by providing a welcoming and communal workspace, knowledgeable staff, and the tools and parts for cyclists of all ages and skill levels to repair, maintain and acquire bicycles. Members learn from and teach one another by sharing knowledge and experience. Mobo facilitates healthy and sustainable transportation through bicycle programs, events, and advocacy in our immediate community and beyond.
The Mobo Bicycle Cooperative envisions a world made healthier through the increase of people using bicycles for environmental, social, creative and practical purposes. We believe that cycling and its benefits should be made equally accessible to people from all walks of life. We see that the promotion of the social and educational aspects of cycling creates empowered individuals and communities. We see the intrinsic value cycling has for developing community, and we acknowledge that as our culture and infrastructure become more inclusive of bicycles, quality of life is enhanced for all.
OK, so how does it work?
The first step is to become a member by paying $20 annual membership fee. This gives members access to the shop, tools, cleaners, grease, mechanics’ knowledge and much more to help them work on their bikes. Members who do not own a bicycle can adopt one of the many donated bicycles, parts, and accessories at very modest prices. Kids receive free help maintaining their bikes during our summer Kids’ Day program, which runs weekly throughout the summer.
And what doesn’t the co-op do?
First and foremost, the co-op is not a replacement for a retail bicycle shop. If you are looking for a new bicycle and someone else to service it, we recommend one of the many specialized bike shops in the area that offer professional services.
The co-op is not a place to drop off a bike to have serviced. Volunteer mechanics are there to help you, but they will not do the work. We will offer assessment and advice for drop-ins, and we will not turn people away due to lack of funds. Finally, the co-op does not sell reconditioned bicycles (accept at our yearly Bike Sale).
That said, we hope to take some of the mystery out of bicycles and help people get the most out of bicycling.
When is Open Shop?
Open Shop happens once a week, Wednesdays 6-9pm.
Additionally, MoBo is open for Co-op Night on Tuesdays from 6-9pm, though this shop time is reserved for all activities besides personal projects. It’s a time for pitching in to do the work necessary to keep this place going. We also schedule community meetings and events, volunteer work parties, workshops, etc. during Co-op Night.
In the summer we are open for Kids’ Day on Mondays from 5-8pm. For all other Open Shop times, youth under sixteen must be supervised by an adult. For specific dates and VERY INFREQUENT shop closings, please see our homepage or our Facebook page.
What does “MoBo” stand for?
It looks like an acronymn, but it’s not. “MoBo” was the nickname of Justin Morioka, in whose memory MoBo was founded. When asked the origin of the nickname, a source concludes, “it was just kind of funky and goofy and that fit Justin”.
Who’s in charge here anyway?
MoBo is a program of The Village Green, but is governed by its own board. The elected board is comprised of six hardworking and committed volunteers: Charlie Brown, Laura Collins, Jheri Neri, Michael Providenti, Matt Gillespie, and Alex Temple. Elections are held yearly. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out how you can get more involved.
MoBo Bicycle Co-op is a collective, which means that we are ”a group of people who share or are motivated by at least one common issue or interest, or work together on a specific project(s) to achieve a common objective. Collectives attempt to share and exercise political and social power and to make decisions on a consensus-driven and egalitarian basis” (wikipedia).
So, in short, we are all in charge.
Do you guys sell bikes?
MoBo holds one community Bike Sale a year as a fundraiser for our programs. The Bike Sale is publicized on our website, Facebook, and in the shop. It’s possible to get a bike from MoBo year round, however, by adopting it! See a Shop Coordinator during Open Shop for details!
Are my cash or bicycle donations to Mobo tax-deductable?
Absolutely! Bring your donation by during Open Shop and the volunteer at the desk can provide you with a receipt.
I love it. How can I get more involved?
We believe that everyone has gifts and talents to contribute, and we’d love to see you become more involved in our co-op! There are a number of ways to do so. Probably the best is to come to MoBo during the Tuesday night Co-op Night (Tuesdays 6-9pm) where you can join other volunteers in working on a variety of ongoing or special projects. Another option is to talk to a Shop Coordinator during a regular Open Shop period- they’ll help plug you in and put you in touch with other folks and projects in the organization. You can also keep an eye out on the website, Facebook page, or in the shop for announcements of upcoming meetings for our various committees. As you may know, MoBo gets a lot of behind-the-scenes work done through our committees, which are open to all members and are a great way to get involved in that aspect of the co-op that best fits your gifts and interests. Committees are: Shop, Volunteer, Outreach, Advocacy, Fundraising, and PR. See the Volunteer page for more info!
MoBo Bicycle Co-op was formed by a dedicated group of volunteers in the Spring of 2007 in memory of Justin Morioka, a friend to bicycles, Northside and self-sufficiency. Startup funding donated in Justin’s name was used to buy tools to get the shop started. The Village Green Foundation, a community garden facility located in Northside, invited MoBo to join their non-profit and offered an empty garage on-site to operate a community bicycle shop. The Village Green’s mission is to bring together diverse members of the community around a common commitment to community building, urban agriculture and access to healthy food for all residents of the community. MoBo Bicycle Co-op and the Village Green formed a natural union by a common belief in sharing community resources, increasing self sufficiency and advocating for a healthier, greener world.