We had the good fortune of connecting with Sylvie Froncek and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Sylvie, how has your background shaped the person you are today?
I moved a lot when I was a kid. Born in Chicago, raised on the east coast, attended college in California and spent significant time in lots of other parts of the county and abroad. I think that the semi-nomadic life style that I had through my 20s is what influenced me to start a business that’s entirely mobile. It was challenging, but empowering to be able to travel around for a lot of my early adulthood. Moving as a kid I learned to put down roots quickly and find the communities that I fit in with. I have good friends all over the world now and as I’m planning classes as part of my job I’m pretty fearless about trying something new in a place I’ve never been.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I was fortunate enough to attend a Waldorf school for a year and it opened my eyes to the wonderful ways that art can and should be integrated into all aspects of learning. Most of my work is education based and I try to include art in as many aspects of that work as I can. I’ve put on classes that are about bike safety, but we use the majority of the class time to paint bicycles to really understand how they go together. I’ve also created classes that are all about making jewelry from recycled items and bike parts which gives people a chance to make something that they are proud of, but they also learn a bit about the little things that make bikes move. Recently I commissioned my sisters, who are musicians to make a song where they collected sounds from a bicycle and it’s now the background music for a series of bike safety videos that I’m curating. Incorporating art into education, in places where it doesn’t seem to belong is a great challenge, but it’s allowing me to reach so many more people in ways that they can understand and enjoy.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
When I have friends visit San Diego, they usually have a list of places that they have heard about and they want to go see, so I follow their lead. But I always make a point of wandering through Balboa Park, getting food and smoothies from the World Beat Cafe and then taking them to a nice beach.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Natasha Keller was the leader of a peer sex educations group that I was a part of in High School and she definitely showed me that you can start anything from nothing if you’re passionate. Pitzer College, my alma mater. I was so fortunate to be able to go to a school that cultivated independence and creativity and that’s where I really fell in love with bicycles and found like-minded people. Vincent Giannotti also deserves a shout out. He’s my bike touring buddy and I was riding through Chile with him when I came up with the idea for my business.

Website: www.viecycle.com
Instagram: instagram.com/viecycle
Facebook: facebook.com/viecycle
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VxuH1_A_5kk

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