Marin Museum of Bicycling set to open June 6

Joe Breeze has been a busy guy. In addition to popularizing the very concept of mountain biking back in the early 1970s, he also steers the ship at his own brand, Breezer Bikes, and has taken stewardship of the original Mountain Bike Hall of Fame. Breeze has brought the collection to his home—and mountain biking spiritual home—in Marin County, California, and has combined it with other collections to create the Marin Museum of Bicycling.

“The Marin Museum of Bicycling features bicycles representing nearly 200 years of cycling history,” said Museum Board President Marc Vendetti. “Our exhibits include an 1868 Michaux velocipede, part of the museum’s Igler Collection, on long-term loan from David Igler. To illustrate bicycle ancestry we’ll show a replica of an 1820 ‘boneshaker,’ and during our opening month, we’ll be displaying the Specialized Tarmac that Vincenzo Nibali rode into Paris to win the 2014 Tour de France.”

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The museum will open to the public on Saturday, June 6, 2015, with a grand opening celebration from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. It is located at 1966 Sir Francis Drake Boulevard in downtown Fairfax, California, just a few miles from the original Repack downhill course.

The museum houses the Igler Collection of 19th Century Cycles, showcasing the key steps in bicycle evolution from the velocipede to the form of bicycle we recognize today.

“The Igler Collection includes examples from the bicycle’s ‘Golden Age,’ when the sharpest minds of the day were focused on perfecting the most efficient form of personal transport ever devised,” said Breeze, who is also the Museum’s curator. “We’ve expanded the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame exhibit to show key developments in the evolution of the mountain bike. We’re also building a collection of mid-20th century road-racing and touring bikes and everyday bikes for transportation.”

The museum has been in development for over two years, run by an all-volunteer board, which has performed extensive design and construction work. Numerous community volunteers have been involved in the effort.

Outside the Museum, food and drink will be available for purchase. Also outside will be face painting, trick riders, a giant bicycle sculpture and more. Live music will be by Fenton Coolfoot’s “The Right Time” and the Drake High Jazz Band.

Special Opening Day admission will be $8 for adults, $5 for youths and students with current Student ID, free for kids under 12 accompanied by adults. Admission is free to Marin Museum of Bicycling members. Memberships can be purchased online in advance.

Fairfax Town Councilmember Renee Goddard will lead the ribbon-cutting ceremony at 4 p.m. to officially open the museum. Many mountain bike pioneers will be on hand.

The Marin Museum of Bicycling, a non-profit 501(c)3 educational organization, will serve as a cultural center for cyclists. For regular hours, admission fees and membership information, please see the museum’s web site.

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Riding with the Breeze

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It’s hard to imagine a more unassuming guy than Joe Breeze. Unlike his contemporaries Gary Fisher or Tom Ritchey, who are easy to spot in a crowd, Breeze could be the guy standing in line in front of you at the grocery store, or your friendly neighbor who always greets you with a wave and a smile. Of course, if you live in Fairfax, California, there’s a good chance he is both of these things.

Read more and see photos from our day with Joe Breeze.

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