Bicycle Heaven

Bicycle Heaven, a sprawling museum and vintage bike parts shop on the North Side, is being considered for a reality TV series.

Owner Craig Morrow was approached six months ago by a television producer who pitched the idea. Since then, crews have dropped in and filmed footage of the museum and store for a pilot. If the pilot is picked up, Bicycle Heaven and Morrow may be the next in line for reality TV fame.

“It has all been very hush hush,” says Morrow who is waiting to receive permission before he can divulge too much about the show. “It’s definitely going forward. I’m just waiting to hear back on the final details.”

Bicycle Heaven, located just off the bike Trail past Rivers Casino in the R.J. Casey Industrial Park, is a giant warehouse crammed with bicycles and parts dating back to the beginning of bicycling time. Morrow, who insists it’s the largest museum of its kind in the world, estimates he has more than 3,000 bikes and 87,000 biking accessories stashed on two glorious, wood-polished floors.

The beauty of bikes is each has a story to tell and that will be the focus of the series. “It will be a little bit of everything,” says Morrow. “Riding, restoring and remembering. People remembering their bikes.”

An unnamed “Pittsburgh rapper” will play a role in the show, he says.

Morrow has spent the last 30 years amassing a staggering collection of bicycles, from an early wooden Boneshaker to vintage Schwinn, Stingrays and Krates, a muscle bike that was made popular in Pittsburgh. He even bought a bike on Craigslist that had grown into a tree for the museum.

A former auto body painter, he stashed them in his home until he ran out of space.

Hollywood producers have come calling before, in search of specific bikes for locally filmed movies. “Fathers and Daughters” and “A Beautiful Mind,” both with Russell Crowe, used bikes from Morrow’s collection as well as the thriller “Super 8.”

Others are already famous. Pee-wee’s Big Adventure bike and another from the Beatles Yellow Submarine tour is here.

Bicycles are a perfect subject for reality TV, says Morrow, adding, “As far as I know, it’s still in the works.”

Deb Smit

Deb is an award-winning journalist who loves ancient places and cool technologies. A former daily newspaper reporter and Time-Life Books editor, she writes mostly about Pittsburgh. Her stories have appeared...