BMX obsession from outer space
In 1982 Steven Spielberg noticed lots of kids riding BMX bikes all over the place. This is when he decided to have some action scenes involving BMX bikes in the movie E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. Kuwahara Bikes in Osaka, Japan was contacted by one of Mr. Spielbergs staff and they tried to place an order for 40 bikes. At first the person who took the call at Kuwahara thought this was a prank phone call and hung up. The next day Spielbergs staff called again to confirm the order. The BMX mania was to be born right after the screening.
Karate Kid on bike
The Karate Kid from 1984 was a movie about martial arts master who agrees to teach a bullied boy karate and show him that there is more to the martial art than fighting. Ralph Macchio, the “Karate Kid” rides a Mongoose Two/Four in the story. The Mongoose 24”and 26” cruisers were designed to fit the “taller” folk who understand quality and demand performance. The BMX fever which started by Spielber’s E. T. carried on.
The unique design of the Raleigh Chopper became a cultural icon, and is fondly remembered by many who grew up in the period of seventies. Chopper was a children’s bicycle based on the look of dragsters from the 1960s. The Chopper bike was the “must have” item and signifier of “coolness” for many children at the time. Much later it appeared in the Jumanji movie filmed in 1995. There weren’t many types of bicycles back then but do you know how to choose your child’s first bike today?
BMX from the Goon Docks
Also in The Goonies, adventure-comedy film from 1985 continued passion for BMX bikes. Mikey, a member of a kid gang exploring “Goon Docks” of Astoria in Oregon rode a AMF bike. Once again it helped to a commercial success of the brand because of big demand of the young american riders.
And there is more…
Mountain Biking Boom
When the mountain bikes showed up, trail riders were exploring the woods on custom bikes hand built by Tom Ritchey and Joe Breeze, which often cost thousands of dollars. It was nothing for kids who dreamed of them. Specialised company founder Mike Sinyard saw a wider opportunity. He scoured the globe for esoteric yet affordable parts that would comprise the first Stumpjumper, which wasn’t the first mountain bike, but it was the first readily available, affordable model, and it ignited a 20-year boom.
Photo: Museum of Mountain Bike Art & Technology, mombat.org
Captain Kangaroo’s choice
During the 1960s, American bike producer Schwinn aggressively campaigned to retain and expand its dominance of the child and youth bicycle markets. The company advertised heavily on television, and was an early sponsor of the children’s television program Captain Kangaroo. The Captain himself was enlisted to regularly hawk Schwinn-brand bicycles to the show’s audience, typically six years old and under. As these children matured, it was believed they would ask for Schwinn bicycles from their parents. Schwinn’s marketing practices were so intense, that they were objected by U.S. government councils in 1971.
Was there any particular bike you wanted as a kid? And did you get it in the end? This month we present a contest to bring your memories back! Find an old photo with your bike, recreate it and share to win a fabulous prizes!enter the contest