Nashville Pedal Tavern
DRIVING A WHOLE NEW WAY TO LET LOOSE AND EXPLORE MUSIC CITY
NASHVILLE SINCE 2012
Angie and Brian Gleason didn’t think Pedal Tavern would be a long term career. “I thought for sure we’d get over it in two years and move back home,” Angie says. Eight years later, they’ve grown the business to 13 bikes, close to 40 employees, and dozens of local partnerships. Nashville is now home.
For the Minnesota natives, the opportunity to run the Nashville branch of the Pedal Tavern came out of the blue. Angie grew up with the founder of the business, and jokingly suggested she’d be interested when she heard they were hiring in Nashville. The owners came to Nashville to interview managers and came back with a verdict: the job was Angie’s if she wanted it. She and Brian, who’d been dating less than a year, decided to take the plunge. They moved to Nashville in 2012. At the time, there were three Pedal Tavern cities; though the bar-on-wheels feels integral to Nashville culture, the company is now in over 45 cities, with 200 bikes across the country.
From the outset, their vision for Pedal Tavern was to be symbiotic with the community. “That was a big drive of our motivation when we came here was we wanted to be part of the city,” Brian says. “We really wanted to get involved with local businesses.”
The two Pedal Tavern routes go through downtown and midtown, serving not only as a bar on wheels but as a bar crawl, stopping at places along the way. “We were just like, ‘If you’re welcoming to our customers, we are glad to bring everybody through and make this a stop every day, all day long,’” Angie recalls of her conversations with bar owners.
The partnerships extend to more than just bars. Pedal Tavern has been featured in music videos (see Jerrod Niemann’s “One More Drinkin’ Song”), for label release parties, in partnership with the Predators, and even during the CMT Awards.
Aside from a great way to unwind and explore Nashville, Pedal Tavern serves an important role for many up and coming songwriters and artists in the community: the ability to have a flexible job. “Some of our singer songwriters will be gone for months at a time and they’ll come back and we’ll give them some tours just to get back in it for a little bit and then they’re on the road again,” Angie says. “We want to be very supportive of their dreams.”