Earlier in the week, when I saw the weather forecast of 50s and sunny for Swap Day I couldn’t help but wonder the implications on attendance. I flashed back to 2010 when a statewide blizzard stopped many vendors and attendees from coming out to the event and wondered how, basically the exact opposite day in weather, might affect the Bike Swap. It meant that more people were willing to leave their houses or it might mean more people will be out riding in shirtsleeves and skip the swap. It turned out that the weather didn’t seem to hurt or help attendance at this year’s Swap. A little over 400 deal hunters paid to get in, up a fraction from last year. We sold out of all 71 vendor tables and only had one vendor who took off early wanting to get out riding and enjoy the weather.
This year we tested the waters (since nothing was freezing) on merging snow and ski equipment with the bikes. The ski sale got mixed reviews, but I think we can grow the snow sports aspect by reaching out to more ski specific vendors and snow sport fans next year. I personally guided a swap attendee looking to buy some new cross country skis to one of our vendors and who was glad to find what some new boards and poles. Another couple who said they were disappointed they weren’t able to find the exact ski supplies they needed, but I saw them on their way out with arms full of stuff. Apparently they managed to find deals on plenty of other items for themselves or friends.
The survey links below are analyzed by our swap coordinating team each year to look for areas to improve the experience both for buyers and sellers. So please take a few minutes to give us your feedback.
If you were a vendor please take a moment to fill out this survey
If you were an attendee please take a moment to fill out this survey
Thanks so much to all those who came both as vendors and buyers. The money we raised will go to support The Milwaukee Junior Cycling Team through Milwaukee Bicycle Works. We hope to see you all again next year! Thanks to my co-coordinating team of Bill Koch, Seth Frye, and Matt Daledin, and Lisa Downey! Great work team!
Thanks to FlavorCycle for helping to keep folks fed with delicious food from local restaurants and deliveries fast and friendly by bike. Special thanks also goes out to Alterra for providing 15 gallons of coffee for our vendors and volunteers in the early hours of the morning during out set-up.
If you found a great deal or had a good time at the Bike Swap this year we ask that you tell a friend and bring them with you next year. The more buyers who come to find what they need the more vendors sell, the more vendors bring to sell the next year, the more options and deals you have as a buyer means the better the swap becomes overall! So stay tuned to the Bike Fed blog and become a member to make sure you are up to date on all things the Bike Fed does to help make Wisconsin a great place to be on a bike all year round!