Tag Archives: group rides

Denton, Dallas, Ft Worth weekend events

There’s no shortage of bikey events around DFW this weekend, so take your pick! Outstanding.

1. Querencia is doing a Tubes, Tires, and Flats educational event from 2-3PM on Sat.

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2. Bike Friendly Oak Cliff Cyclesomatic & RBM bike fair on Sat. BMX freestyle, repair workshops

Cyclesomatic 2011 Oct event calendar

3. Bike Friendly Oak Cliff urban chicken coop bike tour:

chicken coop bike tour in Oak Cliff

4. Bike Friendly Oak Cliff “Hit the Road, Jack” historic Ray Charles ride:

Bike Friendly Oak Cliff Ray Charles history ride

5. Doom Presents Drunkenshlagen alleycat, 6PM, Union Station.

Doom Presents alleycat, 6PM, Union Station

6. Fort Worth Open-Streets carfree festival on Sunday:

Fort Worth southside Open Streets carfree festival

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Denim Ride recap

Despite rain and cold temperatures, an impressive crowd turned out for the Jan 23, 2010 Denim Ride.  Yeah, it was raining, and yeah we wore this most absorbent fabric, but hey, that made it even more memorable.  A wide variety of bike and riders turned out: road bikes, cruisers, a pedicab, two tall bikes, some fixies, an xtracycle, and a 3-wheeled Workman cargo trike.  Given how many folks came out on a cold, rainy day, I can’t wait to do this again when it’s sunny (but maybe not 100+).

The Denton Record Chronicle put a couple photos on the Sunday paper front page the next day, and Danny Fulgencio from the Dallas Observer took some great photos during the ride (with enviable bike/camera handling skills).

At the ride’s end, we dispersed into downtown businesses and happily spent money without using a single car parking spot:  Beth Maries, Jupiter House, Hydrant, Dan’s Silverleaf.  Councilman Jim Engelbrecht met us for ice cream at Beth Maries and to support the ride, and yes, he was wearing all denim.

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World’s first Denim Ride – Jan 23, Saturday

Tweed rides are happening everywhere, even via our beloved family in Dallas at Bike Friendly Oak Cliff.  Folks get dressed up all dapper in beautiful wool patterns, and they ride bikes just for the sake of it.

Evidence of the Bike Friendly Oak Cliff Tweed Ride:

photo by Raul Bonifacio

We love it, we support it, but we know Denton wants to respond to the tweed-ride phenomenon with its own distinct grace.  I can’t think of anywhere to get tweed in Denton (and please comment if you do), and I really believe Dentonites exude tasteful southern small-town style worthy of fashionable celebration.

What is the modern ubiquitous fabric, never celebrated as posh, considered even more awesome when it’s worn and distressed?  It’s worn by farmers, rock stars, aspiring rock stars, bikers (of the loud motorized sort), rappers, kids, adults, etc.

It is the ultimate fabric of the people.  And not just American people, because really the French, Italians, and Indians started it.

Denim.

Ladies and gentlemen, I proudly announce the world’s first* Denim Ride:

We’ll convene at 1:30PM on the corner of Fry and Hickory, in the grassy area next to the UNT Language building.  We’ll leave around 2:00PM, and after an easy jaunt around central Denton, we’ll cruise to the square, where we can take a group picture on the steps of the magnificent historic county courthouse (thanks to BFOC for the inspiration).   After that, we’ll wind down to nearby Industrial St to end the ride at our favorite local townie bar, Dan’s Silverleaf.  You could stroll down to get food at Fuzzy’s, Roosters, or Hot Box Pizza, and don’t forget to tell all those businesses how much you need bike racks on that block.

Don’t know what to wear?  Think cowboy/cowgirl.  Think James Dean.  Think whatever you want that celebrates as much denim as possible.  I have cowboy boots, and I’m going to wear them, because I want to look like a friggin’ Texan on a bike. If you’re really stressing, maybe we’ll get local beardo Remington to model some possible looks.

Need clothes?  Don’t worry.  Circa 77 Vintage on the square is offering 25% off from now until the ride if you mention BikeDenton.  They usually even have a rack of free clothes outside on the sidewalk.  If you can’t afford that, then the thrift stores on University can outfit you.

If you get a flat, don’t worry.  Querencia Community Bike Shop is sponsoring the ride by bringing basic tools, and they can help teach you how to fix that untimely flat.

If you need a drink, don’t worry.  Dan’s Silverleaf is going to offer BikeDenton drink specials at the end of the ride.

Denton Pedicab is sponsoring the ride in one or more ways:  by either bringing disabled persons who are unable to ride a bicycle, or possibly by hauling around some bluegrass musicians to serenade the ride.  Maybe both, I hope.

We can’t wait to see what YOU wear!

There’s a Facebook event to which you can RSVP.

*this is the only publicity for a Denim Ride I can find, besides the uncanny exact same idea put forth by our friend Myles at Rattrappress in Ft Worth.

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27th Annual Turkey Roll, Saturday, Nov 21, 2009

This weekend is the 27th annual Turkey Roll ride, organized by the Denton Breakfast Kiwanis Club, a nonprofit that seeks to improve lives of young persons all over the world.  Proceeds from the Turkey roll help them sponsor seven Sponsored Youth Clubs, as well as providing back-to-school supplies to over 1,000 kids under their association with The Apple Tree Project.

Descriptive excerpt from the pdf press release:

There are four route lengths of 23, 35, 47, and 63 (100k) miles.

Also new this year, we’re having a Spaghetti Supper from 5-7pm Friday night at the Fairgrounds. Come early and “carbo-load” for the big ride the next day. The cost of Spaghetti Supper is $8.00 for adults and $5.00 for kids under 12. Payment for the spaghetti Supper may be included in your Turkey Roll registration fee. See inset for more details.

All rides will leave the Denton County Fairgrounds at 9:00am November 21, 2009. The physical address of the Fairgrounds is 2217 N. Carroll Blvd. 76201. It’s located behind the Kroger’s University Drive (US 380 @ Carroll Blvd).

Helmets are required and the rally goes on rain or shine. No refunds. 2009 Turkey Roll T-shirts to the first 500 entrants.

Online Registration:

http://www.DentonTurkeyRoll.com orhttp://www.DentonBreakfastKiwanis.org

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1975 – “Denton is a city of bikes”

Do bicycles outsell cars in Denton?  A Denton bicycle salesman from 1975 declared that, and I wonder if it holds true 34 years later?

In 2009, we have three active commercial shops in Denton (Bullseye, Denton Bicycle, and Bicycle Path) and one community shop (Querencia).  Two weeks ago, both Bullseye and Bicycle Path employees reported strong sales at the beginning of the fall semester, and both shops appeared to have sold out of the most practical commuter-style bikes.

June 15, 1975, John W. Moody wrote a Denton Record Chronicle article about the prominence and growth of cycle commuting in Denton.  Highlights from the article include a statement from a bicycle salesman that bikes were outselling cars two-to-one, a description of the Yellow Jacket Gang, and general discussion of the relative ease of cycle commuting to UNT and TWU.  Photos by Jim Mahoney.

Photos and text from newspaperarchive.com via the Denton Library research portal:

VW rider

Not long ago, a Denton auto dealer and a bicycle salesman were having an argument. It was a friendly type of argument, one of those discussions where there was more joking than anything else.  But this conversation was on a subject close to each of the men’s hearts – the merits of various cars and bicycles.  “I don’t care what car you like,” said the bike man, “but whatever it is, it’s being outsold by bicycles in Denton two to one.”  Obviously, bicycles are cheaper than autos.  And the gasoline expense are certainly only less than a car, they are nonexistent.

NTSUtowerrider

But other than all that, anyone driving down any neighborhood in any part of the city will soon learn that Denton is a city of bikes.  In fact, it has been that way for some time.  Bicycles swarm down Mingo Road and for that matter in the downtown areas.  Bicycle Clubs practically each weekend take long rides and the clubs are gaining members at practically every bend of the road.  Denton Police officers have a strong interest in bicycle safety, and pains have been taken in recent years to hold bicycle clinics.  Bicycles are also changing the face of the downtown area, as bicycle racks have suddenly appeared on the downtown square.  More are scheduled to appear if the first ones are actually put to use.

rider-past-cars

And the change is not only due to the number of bicycles and growing public notice of the fact.  There are also a complete change in the riders.  Time was in Denton when bicycle riders were youngsters somewhere between junior high age and those just on the verge of applying for a driver’s license.  Not so, any more.  Young adults – and old adults – are seen pedaling down the street at nearly every other intersection.  And those who feel that they’ve reached the age where a bicycle might be a bit dangerous, there’s always a tricycle.  For several senior citizens have banded together for tricycle trips.  But these three-wheelers are not ordinarily tricycles.  They are giant tricycles and it takes more skill than you would believe to operate one.  Bicycle riders are generally lost until they get the feel of the big tricycles.  One group of oldsters take trips around the neighborhood and go shopping together.  They were bright yellow jackets and call themselves the “Yellow Jacket Gang.”  But the bulk of the bicycle riders in Denton are more likely students.  And their reasons are more than fun or economics, although both of these probably play a part.  Students use the bicycles because they are handy.

Yellow Jacket Gang

With parking space at a premium around North Texas State University, a bicycle is perhaps the most convenient method of traveling from one end of the campus to another.  Bicycles racks abound at NTSU and there is no question about these being used.  Some students find a bicycle so much a necessity they transport them back and forth from Dallas and Fort Worth by their cars.  They still have to find a parking place, but after that they take off on their bikes and save a good deal of shoe leather.

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Ray Roberts S24O

That’s “Ess two four oh”, in case you thought the last digit was a zero.

An S24O is a “Sub 24 hour Overnight” bike camping trip, and the term was coined by Grant Petersen, of Rivendell Bicycle fame.

If you have to work for a living and don’t have summers off, bike camping is easier to fit in, and the easiest way of all is with Sub-24 Hour Overnight (S24O) trips. You leave on your bike in the late afternoon or evening, ride to your campsite in a few hours, camp, sleep, and ride home the next morning. It’s that simple, and that’s the beauty of it. You can fit it in. It requires almost no planning or time commitment.

For this S24O, we rode from central Denton out to Ray Roberts, and we camped in the Isle Du Bois campground.  That campground has nice, large, secluded campsites which border the lake.  You can walk 30 feet and be in the water, which feels exquisite during the summer.  Our route was about 17 miles each way, and it’s fairly flat with a climb up the lake dam near the park.  One of our campers climbed it just fine on a single speed mountain bike, so it can’t be that bad.

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The route out there is beautiful, and once you get north of Loop 288, the city unwinds into grassy fields and a wide shoulder to ride on.

nice, WIDE shoulder

nice, WIDE shoulder

I think packing for bikecamping is easier than packing for car camping, because you can’t haul as much on a bike, and it’s harder to endlessly capitulate over which shoes to bring (and then end up bringing all the choices).  Since you’ll only be out for a day or so, you won’t need a cooler or much cookware.  We usually bring a burrito for one easy meal, and I usually pack a sandwich for a simple, no-cook breakfast.  The simple comforts/needs are the most appreciated.  As always, we made  Bookish coffee in the morning, just like at home, ground by hand.

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Zassenhaus turkish coffee mill, unbreakable french press

Isle Du Bois campsites at Ray Roberts are not directly accessible by car, so they’re quiet, easily accessible by bike/foot, and you won’t have headlights/sound interrupting your quiet camp experience.  Except for occasional trolling fishing boats and buzzing recreational watercraft, it’s pretty quiet. Even in the dead of summer, the water is refreshingly cool, so bring swimming clothes.

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I liked our route, which used the northern half of the Greenbelt trail.  Wide tires are nice for this kind of riding (I use 28c-35c), but our friend Cooper came along with us on skinny road tires and did just fine.

At a minimum, you’ll need a rear rack to carry some stuff: tent, sleeping pad, food, clothes.  A front rack is also nice, because it can even out the load and make the bike easier to handle than if unevenly loaded.

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After a long mid-morning swim, we packed up and rolled out.  Efficient bike camping generates minimal trash which can be easily hauled out.

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On the return ride on the Greenbelt, we stopped at the Old Mckinney bridge.  It’s a 100+ year old dilapidated structure, but the main concrete piers tower over the shallow creek.  I think the sign said that Bonnie and Clyde had used it as an escape route, but I can’t find any mention of that in historical text.

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There’s a gas station on the return route, in case you need water, snacks, or a pear tree.

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BicyclePath Time Trials tonight

Bicycle Path owner, Gary, posted on the Corinth Cycling Club forums that the Time Trial series has a new location.

Hello, Time Trials are on for this week. We do have a last min. change of locations. I would appreciate help spreading the word. It will be held off of Airport Rd and Northwestern. This is just down from the Peterbuilt Plant.

The new route will be a loop were we will do two laps. It will start on North Western head up Airport road taking a right on Masch Branch to Jim Christal and back on North Western. Should be fast and low traffic.

If I remember correctly, that’s a really nice low-traffic area just West of town.  It’ll be hot, but that’s as good of a place to ride fast as any I can imagine around town.

Bicycle Path does several weekly group rides, with varying pace, and for mountain and road bikes.  Check out their community page for more details and results from the Time Trial events.

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