It all kicked off at 11 am as thousands of bikeists set off on a two mile, costumed, slow-motion, bike parade through Golden Hill and North Park. Every imaginable type of bike and rider was represented: cyclists (mostly incognito on their back-up beater bikes, but their spandex gave them away), hipsters (on fixies, of course), low-riders (complete with bike-gang style jackets), collectors (spotted at least 2 bikes dating from the 1930's), once-a-year-riders (especially the rider who managed to crash within the first 200 yards), exhibitionists, and drinkers (perhaps the largest group represented). Bikeists all, though, for embracing the pure bike joy of the event.
Once the arduous course was completed, the kegs were tapped and the party got rolling. Inexpensive New Belgium beer flowed, with proceeds going to support bike organizations in San Diego. On display were various forms of bike sculptures:
-- and -- best of all -- there was the "bike corral" filled with various bike creations that anybody could take for a spin. This one was my very favorite:
How cool is that? It actually worked!
Loved this one as well:
I actually saw three brave (braver than me, that's for sure) souls get it going.
Add in several stages with live music, a super-competitive "slow-bike" race, and a line almost the length of the park for new release beers (this is San Diego, right?) and you have bike and beer nirvana.
Best of all, though, were the high-quality people drawn to this huge bike and beer attractive nuisance. No surprise there, of course when you blend my favorite things: bikes, beer, and San Diego -- all things that are associated with laid-back, cool people.
The event was as close to perfect as can be -- my only criticism is that we have to rely upon a Colorado brewer to bring us all this bike and craft beer goodness. You hear me Stone? Ballast Point? Blind Lady, isn't that a bikeist on your house brew?
Come on, San Diego brewers, this guy shouldn't have to wait a whole year to pull out this get-up again!
Kind of took the whole "fat" thing a little bit too literally, don't you think?