Local Businesses and COVID-19: New Canaan Bicycles 

For today’s Q&A with a local business navigating this COVID-19 public health emergency, we hear from town resident Lou Kozar, owner of New Canaan Bicycles. Here’s a continuously updated list of what’s open and closed in New Canaan. 

Here’s our exchange with Kozar:

New Canaanite: Tell me about your hours and service offerings now during the COVID-19 emergency, when the physical store there on Cherry Street is closed to the public. 

Lou Kozar: We are offering a two-step for sales and repairs. We encourage our customers looking for bikes or gear to visit our website, where they can find our up-to-date inventory. Those in need of repairs can select a service option and drop off the bike at our front door bike rack or arrange to have the bike picked up from their home. We are in the shop building bikes and completing repairs Monday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Please call during hours with any questions, 866-629-2453. 

How are you faring at New Canaan Bicycles amid these restrictions? What has the response been like from the community? 

Like all local businesses, we pride ourselves on highly personalized customer experience. Doing business through emails and Facebook is a new challenge we are working on. It is reassuring to see that so many folks in town are looking to cycling as a fun family activity. What is the biggest part of your business right now?

Sidewalk Sale Saturday: Great Shopping Deals & Local Charitable Causes

Saturday’s annual Village Fair & Sidewalk Sale (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.) will feature local businesses offering great deals on products and services (as well as giveaways)—we previewed some of them here and include a fuller list at the end of this article (full vendor list here). The hugely popular annual event also is a time when many businesses partner up to support charities, and a time for nonprofit organizations to raise money and boost memberships. In partnership with Walter Stewart’s, New Canaan’s Lou Kozar, owner of New Canaan Bicycles in the Bob’s Sports lot, will ride a specially rigged stationary bike from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. called a “Fender Blender” that will mix up ice and lemonade that will be sold for $5 a glass with all proceeds going to the CT Challenge. The effort, which centers on a long bike ride, raises money to empower cancer survivors to live “healthier, happier and longer lives.”

“It’s a great event and I unfortunately wont’ be able to do any bike riding this year because of the time it takes place,” Kozar said. “But I love being a part of it in this way that I can, to spin my legs and contribute to the cause.”

Down Elm Street at Main, the New Canaan Veterinary Hospital will set up a table and take donations that will go toward a fund for the New Canaan Police Department’s K9 unit.

Town Officials Weigh Proposed Bicycle Signs

Town officials are weighing whether to install roadside signs developed by a Fairfield County cycling group that illustrate a state law instructing motorists to give bicycle riders three feet of separation when passing. The Sound Cyclists Bicycle Club (which has a mailing address in Darien) has proposed introducing the bright yellow signs in New Canaan, according to Tiger Mann, assistant director of the Department of Public Works. Mann (who added that he doesn’t like the idea of installing signs without a very good reason) said he’s bringing the proposal to the town planner and Planning and Zoning to see what they think. “It’s a question of the signs themselves, where to put them and then jurisdiction, too—whether it’s a street sign or not,” Mann said. Cycling is a popular form of exercise and transportation for New Canaanites, and locals this spring saw their own official cycling group form—a joint effort of New Canaan Bicycles (in the Bob’s Sports lot off of Cherry) and Walter Stewart’s.