9217 Baltimore Blvd.
College Park, MD 20740
Mon, Tue, Wed, Fri: 10 – 7
Thu: 10 – 9 (Potluck: 7 – 9PM)
Sat: 10 – 6
Sun: 12 – 6
Proteus Bicycles has been a College Park landmark for 40 years. From January 2003 through July 2012, the shop was managed by Jill DiMauro. As many of you know, Jill moved to New York state this summer, and she sold the shop to long-time customer Laurie Lemieux, and long-time employee Ben Bassett. Laurie and Ben will keep the shop’s friendly spirit and excellent selection and service going for years to come!
Proteus moved to its current location — a former auto repair shop (we think) — on Route 1 at Erie Street in College Park in the 1970s. In the early days, the shop built custom bikes and bicycle frames, including special orders for racers. Jill purchased the shop in 2003, bringing an enormous passion for everyday bicycling and long-distance riders. Jill specializes in bike fitting, the art and science of helping riders achieve the most comfortable and efficient riding position. A former community planner, she has also made Proteus a second home and friendly hangout for many bike enthusiasts from all over the region.
Laurie and Ben purchased the shop in May 2012, under a transition plan that stretched through the end of July.
Laurie is a women’s health nurse practitioner and was most recently employed as a professor of nursing at Catholic University. She earned her masters degree from the University of Maryland and her doctor of nursing practice degree from Johns Hopkins University. She is transitioning to full-time at the shop throughout this summer as she winds down her teaching duties.
Laurie is a regular on Proteus shop rides and Thursday potlucks. She rides an Orbea road bike on weekends and uses her Bianchi cyclocross bike for commuting. She shares Jill’s passion for excellent bike selection and proper fitting — one of her goals for the shop is that a certified bike fitter would be at the shop on every shift, as well as by appointment. She is especially interested in helping newer riders of all ages and abilities improve their fitness, avoid injury, and get riding every day! Laurie is a “roll model” for the Washington Area Bicyclist Association’s (WABA’s) Women & Bicycles program.
Many DC area cyclists have ridden with Ben at one time or another. He regularly rides in local century (or longer) road rides and mountain bike events. He has been known to take 50+ mile rides on his unicycle, cargo bike, or vintage Wizard of Oz bike (and not get dropped)! If you haven’t met him on a ride or at the shop, he is one of the friendliest and most unassuming cyclists you will even meet. His knowledge of bikes and parts is encyclopedic.
Shop repair manager Anthony Reiss and mechanic John Huntzinger handle most of the complex repairs at the shop. Anthony is a former BMX rider and touring enthusiast who has taken self-supported cross-country rides. He has done every imaginable type of repair and bike build, as well as some that were previously unimagined. Johnny joined the shop’s staff about three years ago — he builds bikes, does repairs, and helps Anthony and Ben with customer service. Paul started in the summer of 2012, working in the front with customer service, building bikes and prepping them for test rides, and sorting out the inventory, and helping with some repairs.
Of course, Proteus would not be able to thrive without its loyal volunteers. The extended Proteus family have made this transition possible, and will continue to be the backbone of the shop. Everyone is trying to make the best of a crazy legal situation, but we are very excited that Proteus will be in good hands for the future.
For updates on the latest events, rides, and other happenings, please check our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/proteusbicycles.