Our mission is to encourage bicycling in Lancaster by creating a fun, welcoming space where we provide access to hands on education and tools to all members of the community.
70% of all car trips in the U.S. are under two miles. Empowering more people to replace these short car trips with trips by bike can have a tremendous impact on everyone in the community.
We want to transform an old, abandoned pump house in Reservoir Park into a community bike shop where kids and adults can learn the basic maintenance and riding skills necessary to make biking a part of their everyday lives.
There are many advantages to using your bike as much as possible! Individual health benefits are obvious, but it is also healthy for the community—reduced congestion downtown, an increase in local small business commerce, more streamlined and efficient transportation and a considerable reduction in pollution and other emissions associated with automobile use means using your bike instead of your car is one of the best ways to positively impact your community!
Lancaster has stated its interest in bolstering its bike infrastructure. This means that Lancaster will be investing in things like bicycle lanes for safer travels for those riding on public roads, as well as more convenient access to safe bicycle parking. Cities similar to Lancaster in size and demographic have undertaken similar initiatives and have established measurable improvements in local small-business commerce where businesses have provided cyclists with suitable bicycle parking. One of our missions at The Common Wheel is to educate Lancaster City Government, local small businesses and individual members of the community about the advantages to embracing a bike friendly community. Everyone benefits when more people use bikes.
People of all kinds ride bikes. Cycling can and should be accessible to everyone, regardless of age gender, language, skin color, beliefs, or income level. We want our space to be welcoming, inclusive, and helpful to as wide a variety of people as possible. Diversity brings a variety of perspectives and richness to any community.
Community is strength. Community allows us to stand together and advocate for a cause we believe in. It will take a strong community to help support and grow a bicycle movement. It is important that we embrace opportunities to join together.
Helping to improve and empower the lives of the people we serve is central to our motivations. We want to be conscious of the environmental implications of what we do and remember that bicycles are tools to help improve the lives of members of the community. We value the vibrancy of life and will look to incorporate joy and love in all that we do.
Board of Directors
The Common Wheel is a board-driven organization, with representatives from many facets of the Lancaster community. Meet our leadership:
Darren is tax and business advisor for Simon Lever LLP. He has worked with many small business leaders and brings his knowledge of tax, finance, and stewardship to the board. He is relocated to Lancaster 3 years ago from Washington DC. Darren continues to be an enthusiastic city dweller and proponent of city living. He currently volunteers with Leadership Lancaster. Informed by over 15 years of DC city life, he believes that non-motorized transportation and access are keys to high quality of life and reduced road congestion. An avid runner and biker whose passion far exceeds his talent at either, Darren can usually be found on the city streets doing one or the other. His wife believes that Darren should get a pedi-cab to transport her and their two young boys around town.
Jerry runs a trekking and adventure company called Skychasers that specializes in journeys to the high Himalaya of Nepal. Here in Lancaster, he’s been heavily involved in resettling Bhutanese-Nepali refugees, through volunteering directly with the refugees and serving on the advisory board of CWS, the local resettlement agency. As well, every fall, he and his family organize the Pedal Harder Charity Ride in memory of his brother Glen, with the goal of raising scholarship money for nursing education. Jerry loves to use his bicycles for transport, exercise, and mind medicine. A three month bicycle trek from Tierra del Fuego north to the equator provided him with an untold number of cycling highlights and lowlights. Jerry enjoys traveling with his family and introducing his kids to new and offbeat adventures.
Dave is the outbound manager at Quality Bicycle Products (QBP) east coast distribution center in Middletown, PA. In addition to making sure that boxes make it out each day to thousands of independent bike shops all over the country, Dave’s primary role includes organizational development, coaching, and project management for a variety of teams and initiatives. He is also the company gatekeeper for time management best practices and the east coast sponsor for QBP’s ACE (Advocacy, Community, Environment) program. He is a 10 year Lancaster City resident and actively involved in the Lancaster music scene, playing with three well-known local bands and running a local music showcase every month at Quips Pub. Dave has drunk gallons and gallons of the QBP Kool-Aid and truly believes that bicycles have the power to change the world! He recently transitioned to a completely car-less life and is looking forward to making some good bicycle memories soon that don’t involve being honked at, thrown over the handlebars by potholes, or run off the road by dump trucks.
Lija Diem Stoltzfus brings almost a decade of teaching experience and over a year of professional contributions in higher education to the Common Wheel board. Lija’s love of bicycling began when she lived in the Netherlands where she witnessed an impressive commitment to the use of bicycles as the primary form of transportation. Lija hopes to contribute to both the education components of the Common Wheel as well as writing, event planning, and anything involving creativity.
Larry worked as a lawyer for Armstrong World Industries and two other Lancaster companies. He has served as a volunteer for numerous community organizations, currently SCORE Lancaster, The Janus School, and Leadership Lancaster. Larry has been an avid rider and bike mechanic for decades and once rode slowly up Mt. Ventoux.
John is a co-founder and vice president of Caldwell, Heckles and Egan, a general contractor in Lancaster. He is also a part-time cellist, fiddler, and ski instructor.
Most of his favorite memories on a bike involve the loss of a few layers of skin and possibly some cacti.
Stu is a Pre-construction Manager for Benchmark Construction. He has worked on fundraising efforts for clients of Benchmark and has assumed leadership roles on complex construction projects. He brings creative and analytical skills to the board and knowledge of the financial aspects of the organization.
Stu enjoys listening to and discovering new music. He also likes watching sports, practicing yoga, spending time with friends and family and riding his bike. Barcelona is one of Stu’s favorite places and he yearns to go to Peru and to explore more of the West Coast.
Andrea is a professor and chair of the physics department at Franklin & Marshall College. She has also started two international astronomical organizations and was the founding chair of both. She wants to help Lancaster become a great place to commute by bike. She is good at getting people to get along and explaining complicated things in a way people can understand.
Andrea enjoys, cooking, yoga, having dance parties with her daughters and teaching really good physics and yoga classes (not at the same time). Amsterdam and New York are two of her favorite places and she also longs to go to Peru.
Her favorite memory of biking is bike camping across France with her family, where she really enjoyed getting to a place and watching her daughters run around.
Miles grew up in Lancaster and was a baseball player and coach at Millersville. He is currently an associate athletic director at the school. Miles has volunteered with The Make-A-Wish foundation, The Wounded Warrior Project, SALSA youth baseball, and Hoop For A Cure. Miles brings strategic planning, fundraising and organizational skills to The Common Wheel, as well as bringing a great connection to Millersville. He is interested in seeing Lancaster become a place that encourages more people to live an active lifestyle.
Miles enjoys traveling, good food, hanging out with his fiancee and enjoying the company of family and friends. San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua, and Vieques, Puerto Rico are his favorite places that he’s traveled to.
His favorite memories on a bike are from riding beach cruisers with family and friends on Ocracoke Island, North Carolina.
Sofia is a Spanish professor at F&M, and Lancaster is her home now, although she considers Madrid and Los Angeles also places very close to her heart. Since she can remember, sports and being outdoors have been always a passion of hers. She still remembers the thrill of biking alone for the first time, without the help of his dad who taught her how to ride.
Sofia also loves hiking, running, doing yoga, swimming… as well as reading, watching films, and cooking for her friends.
Best moments on the bike: totally strenuous up hills in Monteverde, Costa Rica, this past summer; and the adventures lived and shared with her oldest nephew while riding the Way of Saint James, a pilgrimage that goes 650 miles through the North of Spain.