Denver Cruiser Ride: City officially proclaims Wednesdays "Bike Night in Denver"
When Evans previewed the upcoming Denver Cruiser Ride season, which kicks off May 15, he told us about an idea to get the City of Denver to declare Wednesdays Bike Night in Denver -- and damn it if he didn't pull off the plan.
See the official proclamation and more below.
"I'm trying to re-envision the Cruiser Ride," Evans told us last month. "It's like, how do you manage this many people on a Wednesday night? We're just trying to figure out, 'What does that look like?' And how do we get the city and police involved in a different format?"
One way was to brand Wednesdays as Denver Bike Night, with bike safety a key component. In our April interview, Evans said, "The City and Bike Denver and Steve Sander and I have been working on a bike-safety campaign, and as part of it, we're hoping that the Denver police will come and give away five-thousand sets of lights. I'm working on that right now, and I got an e-mail from one of the police commanders that said, 'The best way to engage the bike community is through education.'
"That tells me we've got a green light with someone who wants to work with the bike community -- that the relationship doesn't have to be adversarial with the cops and us and drivers."
Here's proof -- a proclamation signed by Denver Mayor Michael Hancock:
Just because the Denver Cruiser Ride is now a formally recognized event doesn't mean it's suddenly going to turn staid and dull, though. Indeed, when we spoke to Evans a few moments ago, he said his goal for this year is for the weekly event to feel something like this (skip to the one-minute mark if you want to get straight to the action):
The video is "a great metaphor for what we are doing this year," Evans writes via e-mail. "We've always tried to keep the lid on the DCR, but this year we've shaken up the bottle, and hope to bring more attention to riding bikes for fun."
Photo by Renee' Gautreaux
Denver Cruiser Ride release:
Bigger, crazier, and even more costumey. The Denver Cruiser Ride matures and becomes a city-wide party on two wheels.
With an eight-year history of fun on bikes, the Denver Cruiser Ride morphs into a city-wide bike party. On May 15th, 2013 - the 20 week, two-wheeled bike party will evolve into Denver Bike Night -- still a frivolous combination of costumed themes and fun on bicycles; thousands of individuals will descend on the city's streets this summer to take part in what will continue to be one of Denver's signature bicycle-oriented events.
Wacky themes are part the social lubricant and include -- Bubble Wrap and Duct Tape; Redneck Yacht Club; and Where the
is Waldo? -- costumed riders will gather from points across the city to be part of this weekly bike party. In 2012, some 40,000+ riders joined in and became part of what is considered to be funnest thing to do on two wheels -- and making Denver home to the largest weekly bicycle gathering on the globe. "This is the 'On Switch' for summer in Denver," says Brad K. Evans, host of Denver Bike Nights.
With a newly minted, city-backed proclamation in their hands designating every Wednesday (May 15 to Sept. 25) as "Denver Bike Night," the organizers of the Denver Cruiser Ride have devoted their time spreading their brand of bike love across city. These weekly bike parties will become part of the fabric of the metro area community, and this official acknowledgement will only expand Denver's universe as one of America's premiere bicycling cities. The Denver Mayor's Office, the city's Public Works Department and the Office of Sustainability have all joined in to support this proclamation. "With this kind of official support, it will bring with it international attention to the Mile High City as a bicycle-friendly destination," says Evans.
Part of the lure of Denver Bike Night is the infamous "Circle of Death." Ominous in name only, these bike parties have become something of legend. Like moths drawn to a light, riders gather in parks, cul-de-sacs and under highway viaducts; with part concert, part food truck festival and yes, bicycles -- all desgined to engage and entertain. Each week a secret location will be announced via the Denver Bike Night app and promoted on social media -- with some 19,000+ on Facebook, Twitter and opt-in email list.
Safe riding habits are a critical goal, and a companion website will be launched in mid-May (MindtheBike.org). "Everyone should be aware of the rules and regulations for bicycles," says Brad K. Evans, of MindtheBike.org. "The goal of this website is to provide access to info so that individuals have the tools necessary to educate and protect themselves and their bikes." 1000s of bikes are stolen in downtown Denver each year -- "thwarting thieves from jacking your ride is critical to our plan." Additionally, DPD and DBN have teamed up to raise funds in an effort to provide 5,000 sets of bicycle lights this summer. "We believe that education is the best approach when dealing with the cycling community," says Denver District 6 Police Commander, Tony Lopez. This website will be an ongoing part of that effort.
Costumes? Bicycles? Free Bicycle Lights? Summer must be just around the corner in Denver!
"Photos: Denver Cruisers' hilarious April Fools' theme schedule -- and the real thing" Published April 2, 2013
Each year around this time, the Denver Cruisers announce ride themes for the rest of the year. But yesterday's list was wacky even by the group's standards -- unless you were expecting a concept built around "Skid Marks & Seamen Stains."
April Fools! The Cruisers subsequently posted the actual theme list -- but we thought the joke one was too funny to forget. Look below to see our photo illustrations of the April Fools' version, as well as the real thing.
April Fools' list: May 16 -- Shopping Carts & Sleeping Bags
Real list: May 15 -- Hi Ho Silver
April Fools' list: May 22 -- What Smells Like Piss?
Real list: May 22 -- Under The Sea
Real list: May 29 -- Bubble Wrap, Duct Tape & Card Board
April Fools' list: June 4 -- Alleys, Gutters & Garbage Cans
Real list: June 5 -- Monsters, Aliens & Spacemen
Real list: June 12 -- Thunder Dome/Mad Max
April Fools' list: June 17 -- The Voice
Real list: June 19 -- Bible Belt & Panties
Real list: June 26 -- Mascots & Major League
April Fools' list: July 5 -- Soup Kitchen: Eat Like a King
Real list: July 3 -- Where the BLEEP is Waldo?
Real list: July 10 -- GLOW
April Fools' list: July 19 -- Dreadlocks, Droopy Pants & Land Rovers (Boulder)
Real list: July 17 -- Tourists
Real list: July 24 -- Dress Night
April Fools' list: August 2 -- Hey Buddy, Change A Spare?
Real list: July 31 -- Halloween In July: Anything Goes
Real list: Aug 7 -- County Fair: Farmers & Farm Animals
April Fools' list: August 17 -- Warm Showers & Free Soap
Real list: Aug 14 -- Woodstock: Leather & Lace
Real list: Aug 21 -- Red Neck Yacht Club
Real list: Aug 28 -- TBD
April Fools' list: Sept 1 -- Aluminum
April Fools' list: Sept 9 -- Who Stole Mah Shoooz?
Real list: Sept 18 -- Pirates, Sea Men & Mermaids
Real list: Sept 25 -- Snow & Ski Fiesta
April Fools' list: Sept 17 -- Cardboard Houses
April Fools' list: Sept 26 -- Hypothermia
More from our Things to Do archive: "Denver Cruisers to be featured in Travel Channel pilot with off-season ride."
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Westword's biggest stories.