Beatnik Bus plans to cruise Calgary's streets as vinyl record shop

A Calgary music lover decided to save her father's massive vinyl record collection by opening the Beatnik Bus.

Kristin Poch launches the city's 1st mobile record store

The Beatnik Bus can hold about 600 records and will be on the move during the spring and summer months.

Music lover Kristin Poch has a groovy idea.

To own — and drive — the first mobile record store in Calgary. The shop is stocked with a turntable and a couple of seats so customers can test out any one of the 600 vinyl discs that are riding shotgun.

Poch says her father inspired her to open the Beatnik Bus.

"He was always collecting an inventory to open up a store," she said. "About four years ago he had a massive heart attack, which forced him into retirement and the dream of opening a store was not a reality anymore." 

With a collection of 20,000 records, her family initially wanted to sell her father's music.

But Poch — who recently graduated with an anthropology degree from the University of Lethbridge — saw an opportunity.

Kristin Poch is salvaging her father's massive vinyl record collection by opening a mobile record store. (Danielle Nerman/CBC)

She says right now the only other mobile retailers in the city are Sublime Mobile Couture and Crafted Artisan Truck

"We've go so much vinyl, that we can really curate it at any given time. The Bluesfest? The bus is going to be filled with blues," said Poch.

Calgary does not yet have a bylaw in place for mobile retailers so the Beatnik Bus can't park on city streets until that happens.

"That's one of the big roadblocks we're facing right now," said Poch, who will be selling records at private events and festivals for now.

The first one is happening April 4 in front of the Reclaimed Trading Company in Ramsey.


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