The Buffalo Moped Club, also known as The StarChildren, has only been recently formed. Back in August, a few moped riders decided to host a meet-up at Caffe Aroma… nothing more, nothing less. The small group probably did not know that there were a bunch of other moped enthusiasts around the city who were just waiting for a gathering to take place. It only took a couple of Sunday afternoon rides before the number of riders grew to 20… and the numbers continue to grow.
Over the last year we have seen a steady increase in scooter riders around town, thanks in part to the opening of a downtown scooter shop called The Buffalo Scooter Company, as well as clubs such as Hell’s Scooters and Buffalo United, and we of course the Buffalo 66 Skutermacht garage. I guess it was only a matter of time before the mopeds showed up on the scene. If you live anywhere around Allentown, you can see the machines zipping around from place to place, or parked in front of Positive Approach, a scooter friendly custom screen printing shop.
It is interesting to note that many of the club members are constantly on the search for a second, third, fourth, or even fifth moped to add to their fleet. Since the cost of a moped is cheap (you can pick one up for a couple hundred bucks), and there are rogue mechanics willing to work on the rides, the moped is often seen as an entry level, or poor man’s scooter. Today there is plenty of cache in owning one of these little get-arounds. Often times, someone knows of an old moped that has been collecting dust in a garage of a friend or relative. Gone are the days of dust collecting – with gas prices sky high, the moped and the scooter continue to look more and more attractive as practical (and fun) ways to get around the city.
Most of the moped styles that show up for the Sunday ride (enthusiasts congregate at noon) are within an age range of somewhere between ’73 and ’80. While scooters tend to look sexy and streamlined, the mopeds often look like they have been through a war. That’s part of the appeal though. The maintenance mantra seems to be, “Just keep the thing running.” And run they do. From Caffe Aroma the gang heads out on afternoon rides that take them to places like Concrete Central, Swannie House, and other random-yet-fun places along the inner and outer waters of the city. You don’t need to be a moped freak to join in either – if you own a moped that runs, just show up for one of the rides (the more the merrier), or send an email here for more info. The group can even help you to track down a moped, or get one back out on the road.
To learn more about mopeds and scooters in Buffalo, click here. If you have a moped that you don’t want, remember that there are always riders out on the hunt.
^Live to Ride t-shirt screen printed and available at Positive Approach