Luckyduck Bicycle Café, Oakland’s first self-proclaimed bicycle shop and cafe combo space, is set to close at the end of this month. The popular hangout for local bicyclists and coffee drinkers on the border of Downtown Oakland and Chinatown made the announcement on Instagram yesterday.
“March 31st will be the last official normal day of our business,” the note from owner Aaron Wacks and staff read.
Until then, the cafe promises to “keep things open as normal for as long as we can” and expressed gratitude to the Oakland community for its support over the last seven years. Wacks and a handful of bicycle enthusiast business partners opened the hybrid coffeehouse, sandwich shop, taproom and bicycle retail and repair space in 2016, which has since served as a hub for community gatherings.
“We’re bummed but would rather focus on all the great stuff this place has given us,” staff wrote. “The people we’ve met (you know who you are); the coffees we’ve served; the bikes and bomb-ass food we’ve made; the rides and campouts; punk shows; bike talks and workshops have all been so so rewarding. We are forever grateful. Looking forward to the next big thing from whomever is willing, so do us proud.”
Wacks said a string of unfortunate events has led to Luckyduck’s closing, including a devastating burglary last September that wiped out the business’s working capital, injuries to key staff in unrelated vehicular incidents, a flood and the lingering economic impacts of the pandemic on the business and Downtown Oakland.
“It’s been bad luck after bad luck,” Wacks said. “After a while, it took a toll.”
Wacks said it’s bittersweet to let go of the business, but he’s hopeful that someone else invested in contributing to the Bay Area’s bicycle culture and preserving a welcoming space for folks to meet up in Oakland may be ready to take up the mantle. He encourages anyone interested in taking over Luckyduck to reach out.
📍 302 12th St.
☎️ (510) 891-1830
Christina Campodonico can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org