One of our goals this coming year is to start sharing a little more about what is going on behind the scenes here at SRC Moto. We get asked a lot, “What is this place in Pendleton where you are located called BackFire Station?” Well, the answer is that we are evolving into something that takes a few more words than most people can take in through social media. So, we made a quick video so you can see for yourself what is going on.
In Spring of 2020, we moved from our Hillsboro, Oregon USA location and purchased an old Fire Station in Pendleton, Oregon that was past its useful lifecycle as a first responder headquarters. They moved to some fancy new digs across town and the City sold the building to us via a competitive process.
Our vision as long-time motorcycle riders was moving our operations of SRC and (Motostuff) to place that would not only operate as a warehouse but would also serve as a gathering space and travel hub that was centered around the motorcycle traveler and enthusiast. We would have a bar; tasty food; a place to relax, warm up, cool off, stay overnight and sleep in plush accommodations; and a space to wrench on your ride if need or maybe give it a good bath if you’ve been on the road for a while. We would also offer the opportunity to fly in and rent a one of our bikes to explore the great trails and low-traffic twisty pavement of wild and beautiful Eastern Oregon, or use us as a jumping-off point to access the regional Backcountry Discovery Routes.
Of course, we wanted it to be a place to fill the needs of the local community, too. Our physical location helped us energize a dark building and create some continuity between the world-famous Pendleton Round-up Grounds and the historic downtown corridor. The City also lost their Suzuki motorcycle shop a few years ago and people had to travel some distance for repairs or maintenance that required technical skill.
The renovation of this building has been a big task. Bigger than we imagined. COVID issues, material shortages, cost escalations, labor shortages, and left-field regulatory requirements (necessitating a new HVAC system and, ironically for a fire station, a sprinkler system) weren’t part of our plan or the budget that we established.
But, we threw caution to the wind and opened the doors of BackFire Station on 4th of July weekend 2021, which added a restaurant and bar to action of running two retail businesses and managing the ongoing construction project itself. It has been wild, but, its working!
We have been learning, adapting, getting our footing and getting better. We have been fortunate to find some good employees who have our back. We also cannot tell you how much we are revitalized by customers who are coming into this space, getting the vision and wanting to be a part of it. We are grateful to have moved home to a generous community.
So, we hope you will watch this video and get our big idea. We hope to have lodging available in the late Spring and add motorcycle rentals sometime shortly after. Regardless, we are counting down the days until riding season in the PNW and we hope you can come visit so we can show you “all things that are good” down at the Station.