Being an avid cyclist, lover of nature and someone who can appreciate the charm of a small town, relocating from their native Texas to NWA was not a hard choice for Scott Schroen and his family. In 2010 Scott was recruited by locally owned Phat Tire Bike Shop to run their new Fayetteville location and to work on expanding the brand. We visited with Scott, now General Manager of all three Phat Tire locations to discuss the cycling community.
What trends do you see in the Bentonville cycling community through your work at Phat Tire Bike Shop?
More cycling events, exponentially. Going from "oh cool there's an event" to "wait which one is this weekend?" Whether it is a triathlon, marathon or a run, there are a ton of outdoor events taking place in Bentonville.
There is definitely an increase in cycling. And it's not just seen in people relocating to the area, but also in those who have lived in this area for a long time and want to take advantage of the amazing trail system.
How have organizations like Bike Bentonville, Friends At Slaughter Pen Trail (FAST). Phat Tire, and other cycling shops and groups helped shaped the cycling culture in Bentonville?
Bike Bentonville is the organization that pulls all the cycling community components together. The bike shops bring in their own personalities which help build the Bentonville cycling culture. FAST does a lot of trail maintenance, upkeep, and promoting of sustainable trails.
What's your favorite trail to ride in Bentonville?
Slaughter Pen- but honestly that's a touch one, I like them all!
I recommend the Urban Trail for a beginner, Experts will want to try out Phase 1, and hit the section called Medusa.
Which cycling events are you most looking forward to in 2015 season?
The Bentonville Epic Ride, Spring & Winter 2015 leaves from Bentonville Square and utilizes all the trails going north, backwoods trails in Missouri (think deer trails that have been packed out to be mountain bike trails), and loops on back through Blowing Springs Park in Bella Vista, Arkansas.
The first Enduro Race at Mt. Kessler, just south of Fayetteville will be this September. This endurance race is about 15 miles of mountain biking and will be a blend of cross-country and downhill. This type of course is geared towards a person with strong technical skills and endurance.
What types of programs for kids are you really excited to do with your son or promote in the shop?
I'm thrilled to live in a city that sees healthy living and quality of life as a top priority. Our schools now offer mountain biking in their PE classes. Programs like FAST Kids let youngsters further hone in on their cycling skills. I look forward to watching my son thrive on the trails of his hometown: Bentonville, Arkansas
How do you THRIVE?
By flying through the trails!
Looking to get involved in the Bentonville Cycling Community?
We asked Scott if anyone can volunteer to be a part of the Friends of Arkansas Single Track (FAST) movement:
Yes- absolutely! You can pay to be a FAST member and you get a Phat Tire Discount and other incentives in return for putting in hours to help maintain trails. Membership money goes directly into buying tools (chainsaws, etc.) and events like the Bentonville Epic ride (twice a year: Spring & Winter).
Learn more about THRIVE's part in the Bike Bentonville Community: