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Owner of Hillsboro coffeehouse says “cyclists” have worn out welcome – UPDATED

Posted by on April 14th, 2011 at 2:05 pm

Anyone who has ridden regularly with a group or club knows the importance of a great, pre-ride meeting spot. For Portland Velo, a large cycling club based west of Forest Park, their “home base” since 2006 has been Longbottom Coffeehouse in Hillsboro. Over the years, Longbottom has become not just one of Portland Velo’s sponsors, but a haven for folks looking for a great place to get caffeinated before hitting the many miles of rural roads nearby.

Unfortunately, members of Portland Velo recently found out that the owner of Longbottom isn’t exactly thrilled about all the attention from the biking crowd. According to one club member, a sign has been posted on the front entrance that makes it clear where Longbottom stands…

That sign doesn’t mince words. The groups of riders that frequent Longbottom — which can get as big as 100 people according to a commenter below — has clearly become an annoyance to owner Michael Baccellieri.

According to one Portland Velo member we heard from, “Apparently ‘the cyclists’ have become a problem.”

Baccellieri reportedly discussed the issue with leaders of Portland Velo earlier this week and he told them they are not considered “regulars” and that it was complaints from those he does consider regulars that prompted the sign.

We’ve got a call into Baccellieri to learn more about what prompted these new rules — UPDATE: Read Baccellieri’s response below.

Portland Velo director Kevin Rhea issued an email to members this morning calling for calm and reminding everyone to respect the rules. For the time being, the club plans to continue to meet at Longbottom, although a search for a new “home base” is underway.

Does your club/riding group have a meet-up location? If so, have you run into similar issues?

UPDATE, 4:01:
Reader Tomas Q. thinks this would have gone a lot smoother if the owner would have used different language in the poster…

By Tomas Quinones/Flickr

UPDATE, 4:37:
I just had a chat with the owner, Michael Baccellieri. Below are some of his comments:

What spurred these new rules?

“The last 2-3 weeks I’ve been getting barraged by non-cyclist customers that they are not coming in on the weekends anymore because of what’s taking place with the cyclists. I talked with my managers and they concurred.”

Some people say you have unfairly singled out “cyclists.” Is that fair?

“It’s not grandmothers that are doign this stuff. It’s people wearing tights, wearing cleats, parking in the front and being obnoxious… It’s not Intel engineers, these are cyclists. Back in the ’50s and ’60s my parents immigrated here from Italy. When I was a kid, everyone thought I was part of the “Cosa Nostra” crime family… The Mafia happened to be Italian so it gives us all a bad name… Thing is, this may be a handful of cyclists, but they’re cyclists.”
We want to accomodate everyone, but I draw the line when people are abusing property or other people. I don’t give a shit if they’re dropping hundreds of dollars.

I want the cyclists to continue to come, but we need people to respect the property, parking and the other customers, period. That’s all.

Some people have called to say they are offended. To them, I say sorry you have thin skin. Did you do this stuff? I ask. If not, than you shouldn’t be offended… It’s like the cyclists that ride 3-4 abreast and don’t use the bike lanes — and they wonder why people are pissed off on the roads… It’s sad, they’re wrecking it for everyone.”

Are there specific situations where people who ride bikes abused your property or other customers?

“… Some are obnoxious, there will be a line up of cars and they’ll put there bikes out in the parking lot and then a group of them will be on their bicycles and they will just kind of plug up the whole entrance of the parking area… People can’t get in or come out! People ask them to move and they just ignore them… They’ll loiter around both entrance ways and just plug the doors. People are trying to get in and they just refuse to move. It’s obnoxious… Sometimes they can be very short or curt about ordering and demanding things… Then if they do come in, in a group of 10 or 20, they’ll grab the tables, put them all together and they’re very loud… The thing that really turns my prop, is that I’ve got artwork on my floor that I’ve had to repaint. We tell them to take off their cleats to not damage the floors and they just refuse to do it.”

“You can’t be a successful, self-employed businessman without loving people. I love those guys, i just don’t like people that are being mean or obnoxious, it doesn’t matter who it is.”

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Also, if you comment frequently, please consider holding your thoughts so that others can step forward. Thank you — Jonathan

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Julie
Guest

When I’ve seen this happen in other locations, it’s usually less about ‘complaints from other regulars’ and more about ‘large group where most of group does not spend any money in coffee shop.’

rider
Guest
rider

That’s my first thought too, the owner was tired of their establishment being full of large groups of non-customers. Though I will say this is a pretty passive aggressive and poor way to handle the situation. Would have been a better business move to talk to the ride leaders about the business concerns.

bustamove
Guest
bustamove

First thing, this is not passive/aggressive, the guy put his thoughts and feelings out there – in writing. Nothing passive there. Second, he talked with the leaders of Portland Velo. Give the guy the credit he deserves for putting up with our sometimes clueless, sometimes downright rude buddies. He’s right. We’re too often wrong.

Unknown
Guest
Unknown

Cyclists are amusing, thinking they have the right of way all the time, cycling slowly/lazily down the middle of the road as if they’re a car while holding up traffic. Noisily trompsing through cafes and restaurants as if they own the place. I’ve seen groups at other coffee shops where half order a beverage, the other half ask for a glass of water, spending barely any money and loitering for hours. When I see them, I turn on my heel and leave. Then they hop right back out into the streets to terrorize the road. I love how they think they’re above all traffic laws and then freak out when they’re cutting through traffic and get nicked by a car. They have NO respect, none. I’m on the side of the cafe owner for sure, there’s nothing wrong with the sign. @Opus the Poet, “Potential legal action”, omg are you serious?? Have you ever heard of “we have the right to refuse service to anyone”? Racism is a far cry from asking a group of cyclists to have some respect, that’s really cute that you said that though. 🙂

Hart Noecker
Guest

Everything you just typed was made up non-sense. You don’t know any cyclists, and you don’t even have the courage to post your name. You live in the cycling capitol of North America. Don’t like it? Atlanta might suit you better.

A.K.
Guest
A.K.

… or Houston…

Hart Noecker
Guest

God, Houston. They still feed food to children on styrofoam there.

Laura
Guest
Laura

Houston has some of the most badass cyclists I’ve ever ridden with. They deal with real abuse and love the hell out of their city anyhow. I love and was born in Oregon but I hate its tendency towards elitism. Sigh.

Rick
Guest
Rick

I agree with him on his points, but it’s not all the cyclist out there. I’m a cyclist and I obey the laws but I do see a LOT of cyclist who don’t and of course it makes people like the above poster look at us all like this. The more cyclists contend with others, the more our rights are going to be taken away from us and the more conflict we’re going to have with others. It’s just not worth it. Be courteous of others and we won’t have this problem.

Mike Fish
Guest
Mike Fish

Yeah, but I can’t believe he cited ‘wearing tights’ as a problem!!!!

Mabsf
Guest
Mabsf

Hi mike,
I an understand that problem: it’s not always pleasant to talk to person whose pants seemed to have come out of a spray can…

Mike Fish
Guest
Mike Fish

Fashion police! The should probably enforce a dress code – no shirts that show belly buttons, no pants that sag, no sandals if you have ugly feet, and if you have an ugly face wear a bag over your head. Sound about right?

She
Guest
She

I think the tights was an identifier of who they were not the offense…

James
Guest
James

Wow, what a surprise…someone got sick of the arrogance of Portland bicyclists! Don’t get me wrong, I ride all of the time but by myself because I can’t stand the attitude and law breaking of groups here. Don’t be shocked if more businesses do the same.

A.K.
Guest
A.K.

If you’ve ever ridden with Portland Velo, then you’d know that they stress being respectful, following laws and road signs, and being curious community members. Every ride I’ve ever been on had followed all road rules, including stop lights – even if that means breaking up the paceline and regrouping.

Though, I’m sure it’s easier to ride by yourself and throw around generalizations.

sabernar
Guest
sabernar

They all stop at all stop signs? Something tells me, no, they don’t.

shirtsoff
Guest
shirtsoff

Something tells me, yes, they do.

Carl
Guest
Carl

Something tells me that stop signs have no place in this conversation…kind of like how ARTWORK has no place on the FLOOR of one’s cafe.

velowocky
Guest
velowocky

Nothing like generalized trash talking about fellow cyclists. I didn’t see anywhere in the article that stated anything about ‘arrogance’ or ‘attitude’ that you refer to. Do you know this group personally? I do. And they are more experienced and thoughtful than most road users (in a group or ‘by yourself’).

Peter Noone
Guest
Peter Noone

You know you’re lumped in with this same crowd, right? A lot of people can’t tell the difference between one cyclist and another. There are people that literally hate you because you ride a bike and for no other reason–because they lump you into some group based on some arbitrary criteria.

Really, how can you reasonably ascribe group intent to thousands of *individuals* acting with varying motivations? That sounds kind of arrogant and self righteous to me (besides being logically flawed).

And what do you know about this group in particular? I would guess that they are reasonably courteous based on anecdotal evidence, but perhaps they didn’t realize they were causing a problem.

Regardless, even if they were/are rude, is it really because they’re cyclists, or is perhaps just because they’re people?

Brian
Guest
Brian

Sure, I won’t get you wrong. You might have bicycle in your garage, just like everybody who shits and says “i am an avid cyclist but…”

Steve B
Guest

I respect the business owner’s needs here, I am unfamiliar with the scene at the actual venue, but this seems ripe for another venue to come in and swoop up all this business, by welcoming cyclists with respect instead of treating them like a bunch of hooligans.

sabernar
Guest
sabernar

You’re assuming that the riders give the shop a decent amount of business. How many of the riders spend money, and how many loiter?

Tomas Quinones
Guest

I’ll make sure the Oregon Randonneurs no longer use this location as a check point. This will certainly move hundreds of dollars a single group of cyclists can bring to a location in a day.

We’ll go find some other establishment terrorize with out law-scoffing ways.

joel
Guest

honestly, as an oregon rando myself, and having observed plenty of cyclists of all stripes at these types of locations, my opinion is that the owner has basically called “us” (that being “cyclists” aka “the subset of cyclists that i see, which i extrapolate to represent all cyclists”) out on what i consider the standard m.o. of large-ish groups of bike riders stopping at cafes. we park our bikes wherever we damn well please regardless of signage or thoughts for pedestrian traffic flow; we loiter in the parking lot; we cork the entrance to the place; we dont spend nearly as much money or tip as well as we think we do; we descend like a swarm of locusts with gnashing metal feet; and we act indignant whenever anyone calls us on any of this. of course *i* dont do any of these things (sarcasm alert!), but “WE” do, and its NOT a portland thing, its near-universal (in my experience). is a variable-but-mostly-consistent group of people who come in once a week and leave a group of “regulars”? paradoxical as it might sound, i dont think so. regulars come in daily, or maybe 3-4 times a week.

i dont think were talking about a few bad apples – every one of the considerable number of times ive popped by longbottom and there was a large group of cyclists there, ive observed exactly what hes describing.

but frankly, i was never much keen on stopping for coffee in a light industrial area parking lot anyhow.

Antload
Guest
Antload

Thanks Joel, you just saved me a lot of time. All I have to say is: that’s my experience too! I love me some fellow cyclists, but an unfortunate trend undeniably exists.

Carl
Guest
Carl

Well said.

Susan Otcenas
Guest
Susan Otcenas

Well Tomas, you’re welcome to do that on any ride ORRando ride you organize, but I think you should speak for yourself, and not the group as a whole.

Frankly, I agree with much of what Joel has written. An awful lot of those PV folks filling up Longbottom’s parking lot are not doing anything other than taking up space (and using the toilet facilities) at a private establishment that has PAYING customers who might like to use the parking lot and bathrooms themselves.

Susan

BK
Guest
BK

Everything around it is corporate/Starbucks. There is a Pete’s Coffee @ 19250 Northwest Cornell Road, Hillsboro, OR and Insomnia Coffee @ 5389 West Baseline Road, Hillsboro, OR

Editz
Guest
Editz

Heh. What kind of non-corporate bike do you ride?

Bill
Guest
Bill

I work right around the corner from Longbottom’s. While I’ve only been on two Portland Velo rides in the past, I eat there often for lunch.

No more…

–Bill

Mike Fish
Guest
Mike Fish

Good call! Time to boycott!

colin
Guest
colin

Baccellieri has problems with a group of cyclists, they’re all cyclists that cause these problems but his sign may have suggested to some that he has a problem with all cyclists. I don’t think this is the case. He’s just asking for some respect of his establishment and calling out the group responsible. He may have handled it better but if these cyclists are behaving as he and his other customers have described then something needed to be done. Baccellieri doesn’t have to cater to any and every customer regardless of how they treat him, his establishment, and other customers. tldr; BE RESPECTFUL.

Mike Fish
Guest
Mike Fish

That’s right – he can do whatever he wants and so can cyclists. The Velo group is relocating – they cancelled there ride this week so that they could find a new meeting spot. I honestly believe that was what he wanted. How could he have expected anything else after posting that sign?

colin
Guest
colin

In terms of being respectful it’s not about doing whatever you want. Sure they can go into his establishment and be rude, block the way, scratch up the artwork on the floor, and be generally disrespectful. However just being able to do something is not an excuse to be a jerk or to not be mindful of others. As a group that is centered around cycling that sort of behavior gives those who are either indifferent or opposed to cyclists another example to point to and to reinforce preexisting negative stereotypes. Baccellieri stated that he wants their business, but not their attitude. So boycott but don’t bring that behavior elsewhere and be surprised if the owner responds in a similar way.

Brian E.
Guest
Brian E.

Well the Yin to this Yang-

The Cruise In Country Diner has a sign on the wall welcoming cyclist. They are located at the intersection of Farmington and River Rd. Great Milkshakes and fries!

They grabbed my curiosity with the bike the permanently mounted on the outside wall of the building.

This place used to be the Twin Oaks Tavern. It’s a lot more friendly now.

Brad
Guest
Brad

I’ll break it down from first hand observation:

Each Saturday morning, 50-200 riders show up. The majority drive to the ride, park, and unload their bikes in the Longbottom lot and surrounding spots. 50-75% enter the coffeehouse to use the restrooms, fill water bottles, or stay warm before embarking. Only about 5% spend money.

After the ride, about 20-30 riders will take over roughly 50% of the tables in the place during the lunch rush. Longbottom doesn’t have table service so customer’s line up to order food at the counter. While they wait to order, the riders come in and swarm the available seating. Most of those riders then buy just coffee, eat the Clif Bars from their jersey pockets, and mill around for 30-60 minutes. The majority will again queue up to use the restrooms and leave without spending money.

The non-cycling patrons have to endure a cacophony of cleats clapping and scraping on the painted concrete floors and a wave of loud sweaty, stinky folks just back from a three hour ride.

Julie has it right – the club uses a lot of Longbottom’s resources without making it financially worthwhile for the ownership. They’re not bad people by any stretch – just a bit cheap and oblivious to their surroundings. This is one of those situations where they simply wore out their welcome.

jeff
Guest
jeff

I’ve seen it. Brads’ got it. I don’t blame Longbottom whatsoever. The sign doesn’t say they can’t be there, it just sets some ground rules. Seems like a reasonable way to deal with the situation…talking to PV’s “leadership” won’t do a thing…its an open ride, anyone can attend. These rides can start anywhere, I’ve never understood the obsession with coffee shops.

fatmidwesternwhiteguy
Guest
fatmidwesternwhiteguy

Don’t get the connection between coffee shops and group rides? Come on! It’s like beer and pizza, wine and cheese, steak and eggs, baseball and apple pie. An ice cold pils on a hot summer night…t-shirts and blue jeans, coffee shops and bike rides. I don’t get how you don’t get it. 😉

Canuck
Guest
Canuck

A perfect description of a Portland Velo ride and aftermath.

Longbottom’s has been a great supporter of Portland Velo. The club only offers the one ride starting from the same location every Saturday. The club has grown and it is not unusual to see 100 people on the ride. There just isn’t the space to handle all the cars from PV and allow patrons to park nearby without this restriction. The space inside the store is limited, and can’t handle the traffic without generating revenue..

Sometimes we need to see the other person’s point of view.

Retail is a tough business, and particularly the food industry, you have to turn those seats over.

Would you prefer they go out of business? From many of the comments posted here I guess people would like to see it happen.

Sad.

Mike Fish
Guest
Mike Fish

Oh please, to even suggest that a group of cyclists are conspiring to put people out of business is just pathetic. Absolutely pathetic.

canuck
Guest
canuck

Count the comments regarding, “some one else swooping in and taking the business”, “there coffee sucks”, “I’ll never go there again” etc etc etc.

It all sounds like people who want to hurt this business.

A knee jerk reaction because a business owner dares to stand up and say, a certain group is not good for his business.

Mike Fish
Guest
Mike Fish

You need to get the order of events straight.

Paul in the 'couve
Guest
Paul in the 'couve

I’ve not been there, so I can only compare to my own experience with other ride locations over the years. What I’ve seen often does match the description above. I don’t blame the business for getting frustrated, and I’d prefer people not just boycott, but rather engage the owner.

I’m guessing he doesn’t know how many of those riders do come back at other times during the week, or how many customers first discovered his shop because of riding. Nor is he probably aware of how many casual, mid week cyclists might pass him by because they find the sign unwelcoming.

However, he probably has some legitimate complaints that we in the cycling community should try to cooperate with Baccellieri to make the situation better for everyone. I can see why Baccellieri’ might be concerned. He may see customers pulling up and leaving without entering because of the crowd. He may see customers getting in line, chekcing their watch and leaving. He’s probably had comments from customers. He may have a very reasonable idea of how much business he is losing due to the cycling crowd.

Mike Fish
Guest
Mike Fish

“Most of those riders then buy just coffee.”

I think if i buy coffee at a coffeeshop I have a right to sit down at a table and use the toilet if need it. Don’t be ridiculous.

Ed
Guest

Longbottom coffee sucks anyways. And all of their food is over priced.

matt picio
Guest

You’ve just described 90% of the coffeeshops, pubs and restaurants in Portland. X sucks and the food is overpriced. If you’ve only tried it once, then you don’t know for sure, and if you’ve been there a lot and it consistently sucks, then obviously there is a reason you continually buy the coffee.

The comments above as to the majority of the ride attendees not purchasing something from Longbottom sounds a lot like many bike events I’ve been to (and many non-bike events as well). Many cyclists simply don’t pay attention to the fact that they are spread all over the parking lot, blocking cars who just want to get through. (we’ve had this happen on some of the larger Cycle Wild rides, too) It’s hard to get folks to pay attention, and this group is obviously affecting Longbottom’s business in a negative way. The owner has every right to ask them to respect the rules. Tomas is right – it could have been said a lot more diplomatically, but if you don’t like the way he’s handling it, don’t go there’ Odds are most of the people reading this have never been to Longbottom and never plan to go. I’ve never been, and I work in Hillsboro.

I hope the owner decides to tone down the poster a bit, but I certainly don’t blame him for standing up for his rights as a business owner.

Mike Fish
Guest
Mike Fish

It’s not just the poster – even his comments to Maus showed that he really didn’t care for us ‘tights’ wearing types.

Hart Noecker
Guest

His comments showed his anger had little to do with his business and everything to do with whatever insecurity he has in his life that he has chosen to vent out against a group of people he knows are freer than he will ever be.

snapbrim
Guest
snapbrim

I guess there’s room for interpretation, then, because it seemed to me his comments had everything to do with his business, even if they do reveal some bias on his part against fancypants cycleheroes.

bobcycle
Guest
bobcycle

I’m curious if the owner contacted the velo group first to communicate his needs or if the sign was the first indicator that the “relationship” was no longer working. Doesn’t seem like he should be pissing off customers in these economic times. Maybe the group didn’t spend enough $$ to make it worth while or maybe he just has a problem with cyclists in general. It’s not like some cyclists don’t anger some people by their actions but that sign is directed at all cyclists not just the “bad guys”. No cleats??? Some cleats are recessed. I don’t see Velo riders carrying extra shoes on their rides so essentially he’s asking them not to come in. Good to know. Thanks Jonathan for getting good cyclist related news out there.

MDS
Guest
MDS

Yes, the club has known and announces OFTEN that cleats have not been allowed in the business because of the damage to floors. Some INDIVIDUALS violate that, hence the escallation. I happen to know the owner, and he is a guy trying to help his business thrive. He also doesn’t have a problem with cyclists who act like reasonable customers and have respect for his property. Having cyclists interfere with customer access and hogging tables/restrooms has much more impact on a small business than the violators realize. The calls for a boycott are unwarranted. We are GUESTS there!

Wayne Myer
Guest

I’m happy to know that Longbottom’s prefers I take my money elsewhere, such as to one of the many other coffee shops that make a point to welcome cyclists and the associated quirks.

Bob_M
Guest
Bob_M

It is probably not about cleats, or arrogance or cyclists not spending money. Think about it people, lycra clad cyclists with they packages on display just make people uncomfortable.

James Crawford
Guest
James Crawford

What “package”. Most of you guys are hung like a hamster.

Tomas Quinones
Guest

I’m sorry, my last comment was too harsh. I wish I could edit or delete it. So, rather than cause more conflict or stir hate, I wish to HELP by providing a SOLUTION.

Perhaps they can amend their sign like this?
http://www.flickr.com/photos/tomascosauce/5619864761/in/photostream

BikeChick
Guest
BikeChick

Tomas, I am completely on board with your recommended sign! Much more pleasant and not so segregating.

Tomas Quinones
Guest

Dearest roadies, if you must go into an establishment that is not carpeted, would it kill you to bring a set of cleat covers?
http://www.universalcycles.com/search.php?q=cleat+covers

Mabsf
Guest
Mabsf

About the cleats: that might not even come from the coffeehouse owner, but his landlord…. Gauges and refinishing floors can be very pricey…

Mark C
Guest
Mark C

As a member of Portland Velo who regularly attends the Saturday Ride, I think a big issue with the owner is the cleats on his precious hand-painted floors. We’ve heard about that before.

I usually either ride out there (from NE PDX) or take MAX, so requiring street shoes essentially shuts me out, not that I have any intention of eating there again anyway. I figure I’ve spent $500 give-or-take on food there the past few years. I guess some other establishment will now be getting my business.

snapbrim
Guest
snapbrim

So, you’re saying that it’s not within your power to carry a change of shoes or cleat covers? I don’t know about you, but I don’t wear my cleats in the house. Wanna know why? Because it fucks up the floors. Being a paying customer at a coffeeshop doesn’t give me the right to tear the place up any more than paying bus fare entitles me to carve my name in the seats.

colin
Guest
colin

That’s an extremely self centered position to take. Just because you don’t feel like bringing shoes that don’t damage his floor means you should be able to damage his floor without him complaining? Take a moment and try to picture the situation from the coffee shop owner’s perspective.

Michweek
Guest

Being that the only way I get to Hillsboro is by bike, I now know that I cannot patronize this establishment due to wearing cleated shoes.
Good thing there are plenty of better coffee shops I can attend.

Lynne
Guest
Lynne

PV member here. One that buys a full meal after each ride, and generally sits at a table with at least 6 other riders who do the same. Also one that rides 10+ miles to the ride, and does not carry extra shoes. Or take up a parking space. And has MTB shoes w/recessed cleats and does NOT step on the floor paintings. And leaves a tip. No more.

MDS
Guest
MDS

Learn to carry cleat covers… They are light and easy to put on and take off, yet won’t destory the floors.

Duncan
Guest
Duncan

I didnt know they made cleat covers- (I bike on flats) maybe the owner doesnt either.

CaptainKarma
Guest
CaptainKarma

A lot of people wear lycra that really shouldn’t if ya know what I mean. And what Bob_M said, that’s a fact, Jack. Spandex & lycra space aliens really alienate the general public.

If rides of more than a few meet at a commercial establishment, each individual should buy something and leave a two dollar (minimum) tip, like a cover charge. Or take up a collective tip. And park on the street. Just manners in general.

A.K.
Guest
A.K.

What’s the deal with bagging on lycra? It’s funny how people obsess about what others feel like wearing.

Editz
Guest
Editz

This probably sums it up:

http://tinyurl.com/3sjgdfk

bobcycle
Guest
bobcycle

SO maybe Longbottoms can take a tip from this place which is about 20 miles north of Manhatten’s GW Bridge on the Hudson River. They get 100+ bicyclists at a time on any given weekend. (Hope the link takes)
http://nyack.patch.com/articles/meet-me-at-the-spoon-a-look-at-cycling-in-nyack#video-2526376

Opus the Poet
Guest

OK right off the bat I see a problem as in potential legal action: “Any cyclist group of six or more…” (emphasis mine) is discriminatory against a particular group of people (cyclists). Had they worded it “Any group of six or more…” then it would pass legal muster and not be discriminatory. Substitute Mexican or Black for Cyclist and you’ll see what I mean.

rider
Guest
rider

Cyclists aren’t a protected class.

Ed
Guest
Ed

Give me a break. I can’t imagine anything more completely different.

This is a problem that a tiny little bit of consideration will resolve.

If some customers are using up all the parking and tables and bikes are everywhere but they aren’t necessarily buying a ton of stuff, that really is a problem if you’re trying to run a coffee shop. The flyer is a little strange but I think what they’re asking for is reasonable.

The trick when meeting at a business or borrowing their bathroom etc. is to make sure to be polite and buy a thing or two unless you’re utterly broke.

You can also meet at places like public parks which have water and facilities, and picnic tables to hang out at but are not commercial businesses.

Ed

Loren
Guest
Loren

Cycling Clubs! Support your local coffee shop by going to Starbucks! I’m dead serious. While cycling with a large group can be fun, really, it just pisses everyone else off. Not exacly an image improver. The blown stop signs, the three abreast riders, the coffee shop mob…. Been there, done that, I’ll ride with a few friends thank you.

Argentius
Guest
Argentius

One of the things that has surprised me the most about adulthood is people’s failure to communicate.

That’s the only issue here atmo — not the floors, or the cleats, or anything else.

Listen folks, we are talking about ONE small local business, and a group of OVER ONE HUNDRED individuals that occasionally descends upon it — is that right?

One would think that some of the leaders of that group, and, the owner of the business, would NECESSARILY need to talk, both at the outset of the relationship, and, from time to time, to come to terms with the best way to run things.

It seems to simple, and, yet, this is far from the only failure in communication I have seen.

It makes me curious. This really could be a mutually beneficial arrangement.

Simple example distilled from the above: An understood minimum purchase of $3, or $5, if one used the facilities at longbottom.

An obligation to use cleat covers if wearing road shoes.

Wouldn’t that be nice?

As to the “package” comments above — sheesh, get over it.

Bjorn
Guest
Bjorn

Reminds me of an interaction I witnessed between a friend who owned part of a bar in Corvallis and the 25-30 people who wanted it to become a place for swing dancing one night a week. The girl was adamant that they were doing the club a favor because they were bringing 25-30 people into place on a tuesday night. Except that the regulars didn’t like swing music and my friend tried to explain to her that the 25-30 people she was bringing in were buying less than 20 dollars worth of drinks meaning that if they drove 2 people off it was costing him money… It sounds like some folks are purchasing things from the shop but I’d wager many aren’t. Also the owner may have tried to engage with the ride, but when 100 people come in on a day he doesn’t work normally how is he supposed to know who to talk to. I doubt there is really any one person who speaks for/has control over the behavior of the whole mob. If there is a leader, then he gave out his phone number and times when he was available and that leader should call him.

eddie
Guest
eddie

I’m originally from Marin County, CA, the birthplace of mountain biking. There’s a similar situation in the town of Fairfax, on the edge of Mt. Tamalpais State Park and some amazing coastal road biking. Hundreds of cyclists hit town every weekend and holliday, and they all like to congregate in one place before the ride.

There someone came up with a great idea: they opened up a cafe/brew pub with lots of open space inside, a whole wall of bike racks, cement floors, good coffee, good beer, and a place for kids to play when rides weren’t on. The place is catered specifically to the hordes of bicyclists who descend on Fairfax every week, as well as the parents who need somewhere to chill with beer/coffee as their kids have play dates on weekdays.

Sounds like Hillsboro needs something like that. I bet it would work just as well there .

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)
Guest

I just had a chat with the owner, Michael Baccellieri. Below are some of his comments:

What spurred these new rules?

“The last 2-3 weeks I’ve been getting barraged by non-cyclist customers that they are not coming in on the weekends anymore because of what’s taking place with the cyclists. I talked with my managers and they concurred.”

Some people say you have unfairly singled out “cyclists.” Is that fair?

“It’s not grandmothers that are doign this stuff. It’s people wearing tights, wearing cleats, parking in the front and being obnoxious… It’s not Intel engineers, these are cyclists. Back in the ’50s and ’60s my parents immigrated here from Italy. When I was a kid, everyone thought I was part of the “Cosa Nostra” crime family… The Mafia happened to be Italian so it gives us all a bad name… Thing is, this may be a handful of cyclists, but they’re cyclists.”
We want to accomodate everyone, but I draw the line when people are abusing property or other people. I don’t give a shit if they’re dropping hundreds of dollars.

I want the cyclists to continue to come, but we need people to respect the property, parking and the other customers, period. That’s all.

Some people have called to say they are offended. To them, I say sorry you have thin skin. Did you do this stuff? I ask. If not, than you shouldn’t be offended… It’s like the cyclists that ride 3-4 abreast and don’t use the bike lanes — and they wonder why people are pissed off on the roads… It’s sad, they’re wrecking it for everyone.”

Are there specific situations where people who ride bikes abused your property or other customers?

“… Some are obnoxious, there will be a line up of cars and they’ll put there bikes out in the parking lot and then a group of them will be on their bicycles and they will just kind of plug up the whole entrance of the parking area… People can’t get in or come out! People ask them to move and they just ignore them… They’ll loiter around both entrance ways and just plug the doors. People are trying to get in and they just refuse to move. It’s obnoxious… Sometimes they can be very short or curt about ordering and demanding things… Then if they do come in, in a group of 10 or 20, they’ll grab the tables, put them all together and they’re very loud… The thing that really turns my prop, is that I’ve got artwork on my floor that I’ve had to repaint. We tell them to take off their cleats to not damage the floors and they just refuse to do it.”

“You can’t be a successful, self-employed businessman without loving people. I love those guys, i just don’t like people that are being mean or obnoxious, it doesn’t matter who it is.”

Nick
Guest
Nick

Sounds pretty reasonable to me.

Perry Hunter
Guest
Perry Hunter

I’d use the word “amateur”.

“Welcome to our business, please help us serve you and our other customers better by…” works a lot better at changing behavior and improving the bottom line than “I don’t give a shit”.

S brockway
Guest
S brockway

Since Longbottom’s knows exactly when PV is coming it seems like a great chance to increase revenue with some “road snacks”(wrapped not “packaged”for jersey pocket) for sale,large igloo cooler of water with Tip jar, and maybe a carpet runner!! Heck… you could partner
with PV and make a win win deal out of this, without
much effort or expense.I know of several other coffee
houses trying to get more customer traffic while not
spending more on the advertising budget.

Brian
Guest
Brian

@Bjorn

Actually, there is a single person to talk to at the club. The owner and the club do talk, however, you know there is a problem when the first the club hears of a change in policy is through a blog.

It’s fine. We’ll leave. The coffee shop was a nice treat after a ride, but if they were having a problem with us being there, we’ll go. But to be passive aggressive like this, to post a sign that essentially bars all of us from coming into the coffeeshop, that’s just rude. The club has grown over the last four or five years. No denying that. We have probably outgrown our meeting spot. Fine. There are less rude ways of parting company than to just post a KEEP OUT sign on the door.

I understand the business aspects and even sympathize with the owner. But this was just a truly disrespectful way of handling the situation. We will find another meeting spot, and it’s pretty likely I will never eat or drink at that coffee shop again, as it is off my normal routes and in the middle of a corporate business park to boot. It’s too bad… they had good food and decent coffee.

Dwight
Guest
Dwight

I think you need to read the sign a couple of times. He’s not telling you “KEEP OUT.” He’s asking for cyclists to be more courteous and respectful of his place and his regular customers. He could have done a better job communicating this with his sign, but certainly he’s not telling to get lost.

Bjorn
Guest
Bjorn

Did you find out from a blog or from the sign, your post says both but it must have been one or the other. If there is a club leader who can actually control the behavior of the club as a whole then call, that is why a number was included on the flyer. If the owner has talked to the club leader but the behavior hasn’t improved and is as he describes then it seems pretty understandable why he felt the need to create some stricter rules.

are
Guest

seems to me if you are bringing a couple hundred people onto someone’s private parking lot and taking over his tables and using his restrooms completely out of proportion to how much cash you are putting into his register and maybe even keeping other potential customers out, the responsibility is on you to initiate the conversation, and if you don’t, you can expect this kind of response.

B-Rat (formerly Brian)
Guest
B-Rat (formerly Brian)

I am not sure what you are talking about. It’s not like we are just some random club that piled into the parking lot of a random coffeeshop. They’ve been our club sponsor for years now. We acknowledge them on our jersey and their contribution is the use of their parking lot as a staging ground. It has seemed to work well up till this year. Apparently the relationship has soured.

I am not sure what he is talking about us not being regulars. We have been there almost every Saturday for the last five or six years.

My guess is that business, like with all the restaurants around here, has dropped in this recession. That, along with our club growth, has lead to this sudden souring. By the response, the owner is pissed. His sudden hostility has made us pissed, so everyone is pissed. We’ll go elsewhere. He’ll have a little more or a little less business every Saturday, depending on how the cards fall, and we’ll all go about our business.

jram
Guest
jram

.. It’s like the cyclists that ride 3-4 abreast and don’t use the bike lanes — and they wonder why people are pissed off on the roads… It’s sad, they’re wrecking it for everyone.

I was thinking to myself “if we could hear the owners side of things, he was probably being as reasonable as possible”. maybe not. I definitely see where he is coming from with the issues in his shop, but his response doesn’t make him sound like the friendly coffee shop owner. and what does his business issues have to do with people not using the bike lanes? sounds like he was just ready to unload in general.

Brian
Guest
Brian

I disagree. Seems to me he is just tired of people who can’t be bothered to share the road or the coffee shop. I’m love to ride. But I also drive and I get pissed at riders who take the lane and proceed at a snails pace and never get over. I see his point.

Mike Fish
Guest
Mike Fish

He’s also bothered by people wearing spandex for crying out loud.

A.K.
Guest
A.K.

Yeah, I totally get where the owner is coming from, and I can sympathize with him wanting to make the environment better for all his customers, and prevent wear+tear on his shop – but man that guy needs a communication lesson. It’s not about people having “thin skins” and being offending by his new message, it’s about wording things in a constructive manner that doesn’t make you look like a complete jerk while potentially alienating a lot of people and generating bad press (which will probably pop up in Google soon when people do a search for his business).

Perhaps he’ll get more customers without cyclists there, that’s his decision to make and if it helps his business, then it’s probably the right one. I think it could have been handled better, though.

matt picio
Guest

I don’t think so – I think he was trying to couch his reply in terms he thinks cyclists will understand – it’s an analogy, and if the choice of analogy is poor, that doesn’t necessarily mean that he has an anti-cyclist bias in general. You’d need 1 or more additional instances to legitimately support that conclusion.

dwainedibbly
Guest
dwainedibbly

Unfortunate in many ways. Unfortunate wording and tone of the sign. Unfortunate that the owner didn’t talk to the club leaders. Unfortunate that the club didn’t consider their impact on the business. And unfortunate that the owner is willing to risk the loss of business (from club members after rides as well as during the rest of the week) in these difficult economic time.

This story begs for a follow-up in a few months.

Jake
Guest

I wish I had been a regular customer of this place, just so I could stop going.

Seems to me there were lots of ways this could’ve been handled and he chose the worst possible way. I, too, was hoping his side of this story would be reasonable, but it sounds like he’s overreacting to the bad apples.

Mike Fish
Guest
Mike Fish

You can still give them a bad review on google maps…

B-Rat
Guest
B-Rat

BTW, I am the “Brian” of 4:55pm – I’ve changed my handle to make the distinction. The “Brian” of 5:30 is a different “Brian”. I share some of his opinion, but not all of it.

S brockway
Guest
S brockway

Mr.Baccellieri,
A little less “Cosa Nostra”and lot more Fausto Coppi…

Steve
Guest
Steve

Like!

velo
Guest
velo

A couple thought, it sounds to me like the owner had a legit business problem and then proceeded to be a jerk about it. He also doesn’t make himself sound much better from his comments when J.M. talked to him. So, poor communication by the owner and obliviousness by a few people on bikes.

Perhaps other bicycle friendly businesses should request that all car drives with parties more then 6 people call ahead. It’s ridiculous and stupid in my mind the way the owner tried to deal with it by posting a sign singling a group out. It’s his business though and if he wants cyclists to spend money else where then so be it. Or, Portland Velo should show up next week with skateboards.

1) roadies – get some create covers. 2) commercial establishment – get a durable floor. Floor problem solved. My contribution towards a solution is made.

matt picio
Guest

Your solution to the floor issue is for the owner to spend thousands of dollars? Nearly every other sport wears shoes with rubber soles. What’s wrong with the cleat cover suggestion?

velo
Guest
velo

My first suggestion was that the roadies get some cleat covers. My second was that a business should have a durable floor.

The second suggestion is less about bicycle cleats and more about having done construction for a while and getting real frustrated with people choosing inappropriate materials. If road cleats will mess up a floor material then other shoes probably will too. This might not be a good solution at this point for this situation, but I wish that businesses would start to see the virtue of appropriate material choice for function and not just form. That’s my point on that count and it’s not cycling specific.

So, like I said 1) cleat overs, 2) more durable floor. I don’t see the problem with pairing these suggestions. Responsibility for the roadies and a better way of picking materials for the business.

jim
Guest
jim

what if i came into your house and walked around on your hardwoods with my cleats on?

timbo
Guest
timbo

As a person whom respects reasonable requests I think his sign is acceptable.

The rules are not unreasonable to accommodate. He even includes his name and number if you have questions or concerns.

Even though it’s not in my hood I think I’ll ride there to show him some cyclists don’t mind respecting other peoples considerations.

Paul in the 'couve
Guest
Paul in the 'couve

Thanks, and I agree with you. It is a long way out of my way, but if I’m out there I’ll make a point to stop. Baccellieri does sound like he is blowing off some steam unconstructively and potentially poisoning the relationship with PV. But, ….

The best thing for the cycling community as a whole is to try to be constructive and show Baccellieri that the cycling community respects businesses and people despite some bad behavior from a few – which is probably a minority of the Portland Velo crowd.

Regardless of what Portland Velo chooses to do, I see nothing productive in other cyclists boycotting Longbottom Coffee – or any other business. As pointed out above this is really an opportunity for a business that wants to work with an existing demand and provide a location that is set up to serve cyclists while remaining attractive to other customers who may even like hanging around sweat and spandex.

PB
Guest
PB

This is very reminiscent of the 80’s when the Beaverton Bicycle Club used to do the Jack Frost Time Trial Series on Sauvie’s Island. The series consisted on 3 consecutive Sunday Rides, doing a lap around the island. When it began, there were probably no more than a handful of riders that participated but as it’s popularity grew so did the number of riders. The last couple of years that the series was held on the island the numbers of riders topped 100! Unfortunately, as the rider count grew so did the complaints from the island residents. Similar complaints of multiple riders riding abreast, foul language and gestures at passing cars, and litter and garbage in the parking lot were just a few. While the majority of riders displayed proper riding etiquette, it only took but a few rogue riders for Multnomah County to not only stop issuing permits for the race but to ban it completely from ever being held on the island in the future.
As a longtime Portland cyclist, a whole lot older and hopefully a little wiser (LOL), perhaps instead of fueling the THEM VS US mentality, why not try thanking the ownership and staff of Longbottoms for their support ( and hopefully continuing support) of local the local cycling scene. A little appreciation and acknowledgment goes a long way.

timbo
Guest
timbo

Right On PB. Taking the high road serves cyclists interests. Thanks for your input.

Rol
Guest

Since the Bike Snob has moved his consciousness to Portland, I invited it to take up residence in my head for a few minutes and this is what “it” came up with:

http://www.rolandcouture.com/Freds.jpg

Makes fun of both sides a little. All in good fun.

Tomas Quinones
Guest

I thought the lycra-clad were called Fabios.

Rol
Guest

I thought it was a matter of inexperience… like you could be a Fred even in Lycra.

Ellen
Guest
Ellen

I had no idea the owner felt this way. I love riding with Portland Velo, but from now on I’m getting my coffee from Java Mama where the baristas are happy when I come in by bike.

Brian E.
Guest
Brian E.

The coffee is far far better at Java Momma and they have let me bring my bike inside. (Michelangelo is my favorite).

Charley
Guest
Charley

Drop this dude. Drop his business. He doesn’t want cyclists there, so don’t go there. He probably won’t care, and might not even lose too much money (though he’ll likely lose some). End of issue.

Brian
Guest
Brian

Funny, about one third of bicyclists I know in Portland ARE Intel engineers!

You can actually be two things at once you know. It’s not like, you can only be an Intel engineer, OR a cyclist.

Joseph
Guest
Joseph

I thought this was pretty funny, too… almost like he’s trying to dehumanize cyclists.

A.K.
Guest
A.K.

There are even Intel engineers *in* PV! Shocking, I know. Turns out having a nice job allows you to buy nice carbon bikes and spend time riding them.

Mark C
Guest
Mark C

Okay, I’ve read the owner’s response and I’m really confused. I’ve been a regular out there with PV for the last few years, and I’ve never witnessed the behaviors he’s talking about on a widespread basis. Have there been occasional instances? I’m sure there were, but not like he’s describing.

Intel is his real bread-and-butter. Those folks are in there every day. He must have received complaints from Intel and decided he better take care of the hand that really feeds him.

Red Five
Guest
Red Five

I think he’s being reasonable. He’s not telling anyone to go away, just be a little respectful and follow a few simple rules so other patrons can enjoy his business. Come on, like a big group of bike riders can’t be a bunch of obnoxious jerks? I think we all know they can.

Mike Fish
Guest
Mike Fish

If a group of six random people wants to meet up, they don’t have to do anything. If six cyclists want to meet up, they have to call ahead. That’s just plain discrimination. While not all parties of six or more??

huh
Guest
huh

o.O

Burk
Guest
Burk

“It’s people wearing tights,”

Man, I knew we never should have ordered those new “bulgemax” shorts for the club kit this year, I don’t care how cheap they were…

FT
Guest
FT

I think the owner went at in in a bit of the wrong way. At the same time peoPle do not have to be so sensitive. I live in the area and I hate driving the roads on nice weekends. The motorcycles and bike take over the area (my neighborhood) with little respect for the surroundings.

mark kenseth
Guest
mark kenseth

Now you know how pedestrians feel ever other day of the week.

lisa
Guest
lisa

In the end, cyclists display behaviors no different than any other groups of humans. They can be self-centered, obnoxious and self-righteous.

There’s nothing new or different here in this scenario with Longbottoms.

Hart Noecker
Guest

Who in their right mind would agree with this ignorant business owner’s claim that cyclists don’t have the right to take the lane?

You know who’s slowing you down, motorists? You. You might have passed me once, but all you did was floor it until you were slowed down by another car, and then another and another and another. I am not slowing you down, dear motorist. I am removing one more car from the road that would otherwise being slowing you down even more. YOU, dear motorist, are your own enemy. I and every other cyclist out there is doing you a favor, and return that kindness with anger and aggression and disrespect.

Don’t want my money? Done. I’ll give it to the hundreds of other businesses in this community who appreciate me and my choice to live car-free.

Joseph
Guest
Joseph

I enjoy the “vote with your dollar” strategy.

You motorist that give me barely one foot between their passenger side mirror and my knee, never ridden a bicycle down a busy street (NE/SE 122nd for instance), yell at me and lay on your horn, berate me at stop signs/lights even thought I’m not in your way in the least… you refusing to put yourself in the shoes of someone using a method of transportation that only burns fat on my body and uses the smallest amount of taxpayer’s money to maintain and incorporate the infrastructure into the roadways, and yet you STILL disregards my right to be on the road in my lane bicycling with my bike frame that weighs less than 50 pounds and nothing protecting me but a flimsy rain jacket and helmet from your two-ton torpedo you call a car/truck/bus/hummer.

I think the scariest thing I can think about is the fact that a motor vehicle is something that is pretty easily obtainable and can be driven by 16 year olds with minimal training and a plethora of distractions (cell phone, radio, mp3 payer, baby, dog in backseat, etc).

Scares me every day.

snapbrim
Guest
snapbrim

Sure, we have the right to take a lane. However, it’s also perfectly within our rights to move momentarily to the right, assuming it’s safe to do so. The letter of the law, when wielded as a bludgeon or as a shield, can be used to browbeat others or to cover one’s own ass, but unyielding devotion to it is inherently limiting. Common sense and common courtesy demand that we sometimes yield our right to do such-and-such in order to exercise our prerogative to bend a little, to show some consideration. This goes for drivers and cyclists, and everyone else, too.

Hart Noecker
Guest

But nobody does that. Nobody wants a bunch of cars slowed down spewing out even more toxic chemicals.

snapbrim
Guest
snapbrim

Sorry I didn’t get back to this sooner, but I have to say this is a lame comeback. Basically, I said maybe people – which includes you and me – ought to try to show some consideration and your response is yeah well noone does. So why should we, right? Lame.

Paul Souders
Guest

I’ve ridden a few times with PV although I’m not a dues-paying member. I’m always struck with their deference as riders/road users but never noticed their behavior as patrons.

100+ riders are bound to be conspicuous, especially in club kit and neon jackets. So a) a few bad apples can quickly spoil a pretty big barrel, and b) conspicuousness means the bar for “bad apple” gets pretty low. But (given a) and b)) c) probability suggests that among 100s of cyclists there will be at least one “bad apple” every week.

I think Baccellieri has legitimate concerns but poor communication skills. Longbottom has left some creative business solutions untried (See S Brockway’s comments, for ex) but I can’t/won’t speculate why.

Tourbiker
Guest

Soo…meet @ liberty high school, and arrange for someone with a coffee stand (Espresso)in the parking lot.? eventually you will create…

earthquake
Guest
earthquake

Is Portland Velo still wearing Longbottom ads on their jerseys? If the original deal was that PV could use the parking lot, and now they can’t, this is a problem. Maybe PV members need to start pinning a patch over the ads on their jerseys.

I would like to hear from the owner why he didn’t talk to PV leadership about a change in sponsorship parameters.

steve
Guest
steve

So the bottom line is…Baccellieri is overwhelmed with the cyclist. He is setting boundries.