FORT SMITH, Ark. — Riverside Rides Bike Rental Shop on the Greg Smith Riverfront Trail is open for business and is being run by students in an entrepreneurship class at the Future School.
“We had our first customer this morning before everyone came in and I got him his bike, signed it out and everything and it was…it felt really good, but I’m excited to get more people out and on the trails,” Rebecca Deen said.
Deen just graduated from the Future School and she is one of the students who will be working at Riverside Rides this summer.
The entrepreneur class was taught by two businessmen, Griffin Hanna and Phil White, who taught them what it takes to operate a successful business.
“Each class we would cover a different thing," Deen said. "We got the business plan, we got the legalities, we got accountants in to visit one time. We learned about promoting the business, how to run it."
Local businesses donated $50,000 to buy the shipping containers and everything needed to get the shop up and running.
“It’s been amazing to watch them grow and develop ideas and figure out how to implement things and work with customers," Taylor Gilbreth said. "I think a big part of this is figuring out how to adapt to change. They have an idea and they go with that and then they realize later that they have to change that."
Alivia Hill just finished her junior year and says she wants to start a business someday and is excited they finally got to open the shop.
“Hopefully it will be successful, and we can get out there and spread the word, we have social medias on Facebook and Instagram, you can follow us, Riverside Rides and I’m just hopeful that it ends up being successful this summer,” she said.
The students who work at the shop will get paid but the rest of the proceeds will be put into a scholarship fund for seniors.
Riverside Rides is open Wednesday-Sunday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.