Tonight at 7 p.m., the Denver Cruiser Ride will kick off its 2014 season -- but not in its usual location. Gathering at Civic Center Park is off due to American Ninja Warrior tryouts, so the DCR Facebook page notes that the city is shutting down a portion of 14th Street for an opening night party featuring the theme Reds & Robes.
To get you ready for this annual rite, we've collected some of the best photos from 2013 rides supplemented by a special bonus: Michael Diorio's DCR-friendly rewrite of "Twas the Night Before Christmas." Check it all out below.
"Twas the Night Before the First Denver Cruiser Ride" By Michael Diorio
'Twas the night before the 1st Cruiser Ride and all through the city Not a person was stirring, not even p-diddy The bikes were all hung in the garages with care In the hopes that St. Brad, soon would be there
The Cruisers were all nestled all snug in their beds While visions of the COD danced in their heads And my sugar mamma in her 'kerchief and I in my cap Had just settled down for a long summers nap
When out on the streets there arose such a clatter I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter Away to the window I flew like a flash Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash
The moon on the breast of the newly paved road Gave the luster of mid-day to objects below When what to my wondering eyes should appear But a Red B-cycle and 12 Scorchers in gear
With a little old rider, so lively and rad I knew in a moment, it must be St. Brad More rapid than Honey Badgers, his Scorchers they came And he whistled and shouted and called them by name
Now Damon, Now Jeff, now Amy and Brian On Steve O, on Nick, on Eva, on Dan, On Brenda, on Andrew, on Shoshana and Amber To the top of the porch, to the top of the wall Now ride away, ride away, ride away all
As route maps that before the Chinook winds fly When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky So up to the bike paths, the Scorchers they flew With saddle bags full of bells and PBR's, and St. Brad too
And then in a twinkling, I heard on the roof The prancing and pawing of each little foot As I drew in my hand, and was turning around Down the chimney St. Brad came with a bound
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot And his clothes were all tarnished with bike grease and soot A bundle of cruiser bells and license plates he had flung on his back And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack
His eyes, how they twinkled, His dimples how merry His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow And the grips on his Schwinn were as white as the snow
The tip of a beer bottle he held tight in his teeth And the beer foam it encircled his mouth like a wreath He had a broad face and a little beer belly That shook when he laughed like a bowl of KY jelly
He was lanky and lean, a right jolly old elf And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of my self A wink of his eye and a twist of his head Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work And filled all the bike baskets, then turned with a jerk And placing his finger inside of his nose And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose
He sprang to his B-cycle, to his Scorchers gave a whistle And away they all rode, like the down on a thistle But I heard him exclaim, as he rode out of sight Happy cruising to all and to all a good ride!
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More from our Things to Do archive: "Photos: Denver Cruisers' Pirates Ride brings out the mermaids, too."