Business Spotlights

Business Profile: Ride of Pleasantville

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Stefan Pappalardo cuts the ribbon at last month's grand opening of his bicycle shop, Ride of Pleasantville. Ed Elliott photo.
Stefan Pappalardo cuts the ribbon at last month’s grand opening of his bicycle shop, Ride of Pleasantville. Ed Elliott photo.

Stefan Pappalardo has been an avid cyclist since childhood, so it makes sense he would try to bring that passion into his career.

Pappalardo, 28, opened Ride of Pleasantville (its official name is ride. of pleasantville) on Apr. 8 after years of involvement in the cycling industry. He began working in a northern Westchester bike shop when he was in 10th grade, then went to the University of Virginia to study mechanical engineering.

After detesting the school, feeling out of place as a northerner in a southern state, he transferred to the University of Vermont, where he graduated with a physics degree with the goal of applying his skills to the bike industry.

“I really liked the idea of having my own shop even when I was starting college,” he said. “I grew up racing and riding, so to pay for that you end up working in the shop, you kind of get bit by the bug a little bit more and you end up staying with it.”

Pappalardo said opening a shop was the easiest way to get into the business, since there are few jobs with manufacturers and designers. After graduation, he began compiling capital from private financers and through small business loans, but still didn’t have enough money for his own shop. He put the dream on hold to temporarily manage a bike shop in Brooklyn. Eventually, his long-term girlfriend’s father joined Pappalardo as a partner and helped make Ride a possibility.

Despite the initial challenges of financing the shop and the challenges posed by the online marketplace, Pappalardo noted that bike shops continue to be a fixture because manufacturers are protective of their dealers. Companies that produce the bicycles want their products sold by professionals who know how to assemble and fix them properly.

Pappalardo said one of the things that sets Ride apart from its competitors are the  bike tune-ups and fittings as well as specialty mountain bike rebuilds that are done on site. Where other shops might try to charge customers to replace costly bike parts, Pappalardo will look to make repairs whenever possible.

“I’m way more into [the idea that] if it’s an expensive thing let’s try to fix it,” he said.

But the Manville Road shop is more than repair shop. It carries some of the best bicycle lines in the business, including brands such as Grant, Biachni and Norco as well as a full assortment of bike-related equipment.

Although the store has only been open for about two months, Pappalardo noted that it has already developed a kind of cult following, having become a popular hangout for middle school and high school students on the Pleasantville Mountain Biking team. Group ride events on local trails and instructional classes have also been steadily growing in popularity.

“Everybody that bikes in town have started to show up,” said Pappalardo. “You can see that there’s a lot of enthusiasm about the shop.”

Ride of Pleasantville is located at 351 Manville Rd. and is open Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. For more information, call 914-495-3666 or visit


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