Tag Archives: Querencia

saturday shots

When life gives you lemons, or in my case, a handlebar stab in the calf, you make blog posts. I’ll be resting up this week as my leg heals, so inevitably I’ll be getting some posts out of my (brain) queue.

Here are random shots from yesterday, an all around great day that started with mountain biking at Johnson’s Branch, working at Querencia, and rolling down to the new Oak St Drafthouse for pints.

lush Johnson's Branch trail





Tagged ,

Querencia to expand to Denton square

Denton’s nonprofit bike shop, Querencia, is moving to the square. Back in the beginning of the summer, I came clean that things were getting tough, and there weren’t enough volunteers. And it was crazy hot working outside. Since then, Querencia has had more coordinators, volunteers, and patrons than ever. Salut!

Starting January 1st, 2012, we’re growing up and expanding indoors. This week, we signed a lease with the SCRAP (based in Portland, OR) nonprofit for a garage shop space on Cedar St, just off the Denton square. SCRAP is opening this Denton location for their recycled art-supplies, and they’ve graciously agreed to sublease the shop space to us. While much cozier in size than our existing shop, the new location has a roof, bathrooms, classroom, and a mailing address.

New shop facade:

future home of Querencia on the square


Seen at shop: old bicycle license


The idea of bicycle licensing comes up cyclically, and I won’t go into the details, because it’s been well covered here, here, here, etc. But it was kinda fun to see a relic of the past on this bicycle that somehow migrated 40 miles over 40 years from Richardson to Denton.

Querencia gets the odd stuff. Sometimes it’s a Britney Spears sticker, sometimes it’s an orange bakfiet cargo bike, sometimes it’s a 1969 bicycle license.

Tagged ,

DORBA awards tool grant to Querencia

Kris Ohlinger shows off DORBA grant tools awarded to Querencia

Tuesday night, I traveled to Rowlett to watch Querencia accept a tool grant from DORBA. DORBA awarded 4 tool sets with stands and pumps to qualifying nonprofits, including Querencia and the West Dallas Bike Co-op.

It’s great to see cultural overlap between community bike initiatives and mountain biking enthusiasm, because in the end, we all want the same thing: more people riding bikes.

People cross over from recreational to practical riding and the other way around. I went from commuting to mountain biking, back to commuting, back to more mountain biking, and it all felt related (even when the social spheres didn’t overlap as much as now). Props to DORBA for doing this grant series; it’s a great connector idea, and I look forward to seeing even more crossover in years to come. In the meantime, I think I’ll take the A-train down to Dallas to visit the West Dallas Bike Co-op.

Tagged ,

Me, Querencia, and You

me (Howard Draper)

That’s me, at Querencia, after a chilly day of volunteer work.

I never write about myself on this blog. It never felt right, because I thought BikeDenton was a faceless news source. Well, it ain’t true. It’s not faceless, and as deeply as my own life is woven into Denton’s bike culture, I can’t pretend to be an outside observer. Meeting people and trying to document bike culture has become big part of my life, in a way I didn’t predict. Before I started BikeDenton, I started volunteering with Querencia in 2007. Back then, Querencia was a community bike concept pursued by a passionate group of UNT and TWU students. I spent a few previous years traveling outside Denton to play music, and I came back home really wanting to put in volunteer time somewhere that made a difference. Querencia was that place.

That was four years ago. In 2011, Querencia needs new blood. It needs new volunteers perhaps more than ever, to survive and flourish. I think there’s been a perception that the shop runs itself quite well without outside help, and that couldn’t be further from reality. Leaders are getting tired, people get busy, lives change.

Querencia will take volunteers of any skill level, and just having someone to greet visitors is invaluable. We haven’t had anyone do that in a year, since the shop was in my backyard. I’ll cut to the chase: If you want to give back to the community, and you like the idea of doing something bikey, Querencia needs you. The community needs you. The shop is built, stocked with tools, kind of organized, registered with the IRS as a 501c3 nonprofit, and has some money in the bank. You can step up, hold reigns, have ideas and make a difference in your community. It took us years to get the paperwork through the IRS, build the shop, and amass the collection of bikes and parts. All of that hard work is a torch that’s waiting to be passed on.

We meet once a month and talk logistics and schedule our shop coordinators for the next 30 days. If you want to get involved, come to shop on Wednesdays 5-7PM or Saturday 3-5PM. Go to qcbs.org for more info.


Month of Bike Love: Ladies Shop Nights at Querencia

“Let me tell you what I think of bicycling. I think it has done more to emancipate women than anything else in the world. It gives women a feeling of freedom and self-reliance. I stand and rejoice every time I see a woman ride by on a wheel…the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood.”

-Susan B. Anthony


ladies bike nights through February

Local women’s social cycling group, the Vaginees, is hosting bike maintenance and repair classes every Tuesday night of February from 5:30-7:30PM. They’re hosting the classes at Querencia, next to Rubber Gloves at 411 E. Sycamore. You (ladies, not dudes) can RSVP to the Facebook event. At 45 attendees confirmed so far, it’s going to be a hit.

“Washing our frames, cleaning our chains and Bike 101”
Come to this shop and clean up your bike if your brakes are squeaky and if your chain crunches when you pedal. We will also be introducing the names of the parts of the bike and the tools used to work on a bike.

“Pump it up!”
We’ll be patching tubes, changing out tires and talking about adequate tire pressure for easier biking.

“Ride smart.”
Learn how to adjust your brakes for a quick stop and learn how to true (make straight) a bent or wobbly wheel. We’ll also be talking about safety signals and “sharing the road” aka “how to not get hit by a car.”

“Dress it up!”
Wrap your handle bars in some new grip tape, add a bell or put some cards in your spokes. Whatever you want to do, it can be done. After shop we’ll have our “Monthly Cycle” and show off our newly cleaned and tuned bicycles on the streets of Denton.

Tagged , ,

alleycat cards

Some interesting stuff gets donated to Querencia. While going through some donations last week, I found these spoke cards from Denton alleycat races over the last few years.

Here’s a shot of the covers, a shot of the routes, and a closeup of a route pattern that we saw also used for the Svart Katt transmigratory celebration of darkness.




Tagged ,

Rings of Querencia

While recently volunteering at Querencia, I helped sort a bunch of older cranksets. I couldn’t help but arrange them and take a photo. There’s so much beauty in the variety of bicycle parts, especially from bygone eras and styles from distant lands.


Tagged ,

Surly Scars

Surly CrossCheck damage

Nick Magruder recently donated his 2009 hit-and-run Surly Cross Check frame to Querencia’s shop. For being hit from behind by a car going 40mph, I’d say it survived almost as unscathed as Nick. One rear dropout is broken, and the seat stays are bent.  4130 steel can take a hit pretty well, I’d say.

(To whoever stole the frame off the QCBS fence this week, now you know what’s wrong with it)

UPDATE: the person who grabbed it has a pretty amazing sounding project planned for it.  Hints: bamboo, cargo capacity. I take back the word “stole” and substitute “repurpose!”

Tagged ,

Querencia opening

Querencia parts and puppy

After closing in April of 2010, the Querencia Community Bike Shop reopened yesterday at 411 E. Sycamore, next to Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios.  They’ve resumed regular Saturday hours (check qcbs.org for schedule), and they welcome volunteers of all skill levels.

If you don’t know Querencia, it’s a 501c3 nonprofit that provides bicycle tools and guidance to teach Denton citizens how to repair their own bicycles.  They’ve given bikes to kids, repaired bikes for the homeless, and they’re now working on a kids holiday bike giveaway.

green Querencia tools

people at Querencia reopening