Pedalpalooza 2021: The low-down

Spotted on South Waterfront, 12 June 2021. Minolta Hi-Matic 7s/Silberra 100

Hello, folks. Pedalpalooza, Portland’s annual Bike-Fun Celebration, is back! After COVID drastically altered it last year, we are now back to group rides, but with precautions, like masking up. And this year it’s June, July, and August vs. just the month of June.

As I mentioned last month, I’ll be partaking in the festivities. But things will be different than before. For the most part, all my rides will require registration (free, via Eventbrite) and will be capped at twenty. The only one I’m not doing that for is Sunset/Moonrise, as this is my most “party” ride, and I want to see how the free-for-all goes. If everything is OK, I may do more through the summer. If it doesn’t go OK, I may change it to registration only or just skip it until 2022.

Most of my rides will happen in July and August. I’m trying to keep the amount modest, as I burn out anytime I take on a big load. Though having it spread out will definitely lessen the burden!

Check back for any changes and/or additions. For now, here is what I have:

Thursday June 24: Sunset/Moonrise Ride. 7:30 PM, Sabin Hydro Park, NE Skidmore at 19th. Did you know that on the night of the full moon, sunset is usually right before the moon rise? Let’s hit up a spot where we can watch both! Stock up on snacks and libations before meeting up, then depart on a 5-ish mile to our mystery destination. Ride not a loop. Lights, layers, and a picnic blanket are good ideas. Extra credit if you bring a telescope or good binoculars to observe the moon. Please note: THERE IS NO STORE STOP. There are a few markets within a 1/2 mile of the start. There is also a market near where we end, but the ride will not stop there. Sunset is 9:04 PM. Moonrise is 9:37 PM. RIDE MAY BE CANCELLED DUE TO RAIN OR OVERCAST WEATHER, check back on the day of the ride for the status.

Sunday July 11: Train History Ride-Following the steam line to St Johns Take a tour following the first steam train line to St. Johns. This was the first example of “mass transit” on the Peninsula. Join the Urban Adventure League along with local historian Dan Haneckow as we ride about 12 miles from Lower Albina to St. Johns, stopping along the way to talk about history. This is a casually paced ride with many stops, no one left behind . Ride not a loop, will end somewhere near St Johns for food and libations, though you may be able to catch a wave of folks heading back to Central Portland. Limited to 20 participants. Registration required (free), you’ll get full details after registration.

Monday July 12: Dead Freeways Ride What if…Portland built all the freeways it planned to? This under 10-mile cruise will start near downtown and tour highways that still exist (like I-405 and 5), highways that were removed (Harbor Drive), and highways that never happened (Mt. Hood Freeway.) We will stop at several points to discuss our history with limited access roads and how it has shaped the city we know. We’ll also chat about projects that still may happen. This is a casually paced ride with many stops, no one left behind. Ride not a loop, will end somewhere in SE near Foster Road. We can get food and libations afterwards. Limited to 20 participants.

Saturday July 31: Bikes and Film Cameras Do you love shooting on film? 35mm, medium format, instant, you name it. This ride is to celebrate this once thought dead format. Dust off your old Minolta SR-T 101, pump up the tires on your Schwinn High Sierra, and come along with us for a 15-ish mile cruise. We’ll stop by several spots good for documenting on film. This is a casually paced ride with many stops, no one left behind. Ride not a loop, will end in St Johns where we can stop by Blue Moon to drop off rolls and development, then head somewhere for food and libations. (Or maybe we’ll go eat first, Blue Moon second?) Limited to 20 participants.

Monday August 2: Three Speed Cruise It’s time for a lovely cruise on three speed bicycles! This approximately 10 mile loop will meander around the Willamette River from the central city to Sellwood. This ride is open to all bikes that have a internal hub gear of three, four, or five speeds. You do not need to be a member of Society of Three Speeds to be on the ride. If you are not a member, you can purchase a membership on the day of ride for the special price of $20! This is a casually paced ride, no one left behind . We can get food and libations afterwards. Limited to 20 participants.

Saturday August 21: Old Library Branches Portland is a city of libraries! There are currently 14 active branches of the Multnomah County Library within city limits (plus Central). But there have been many more branches that have come and go. Some of these branches moved to their current location, some simply closed, now forgotten. Many old library buildings still remain. You may pass by these old branches every day without noticing! This 20-mile ride will pass by about a dozen former branch buildings. This ride will concentrate on SE with brief forays into NE and SW. (We may hit up N/NE spots on a future ride.) This is a casually paced ride with many stops, no one left behind. Ride not a loop, will end somewhere near Mount Tabor. We’ll have a good break mid-way through the ride for refreshments, and we can also get food and libations afterward. Limited to 20 participants.

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