Denver Bike Week is about to roll into town. Realizing that several unconnected bike events were all scheduled around the time of the June 24 national Bike to Work Day, Denver Cruisers founder Brad Evans decided to launch Denver Bike Week, “a weeklong celebration of all things bike” that will run from June 20 to June 27. And, yes, that actually makes it eight days — but this event is a bonus for the city. “In future years, this is gonna be the bomb,” Evans promises. “Had to get it launched.”
One of his motivations? The League of American Bicyclists just announced its ratings for bike-friendly cities, and Denver ranked number seven, once again making it a silver-level community — the same status it was awarded four years ago. “This is Denver’s second time to receive the silver designation, acknowledging the community’s commitment to improving conditions for bicycling through investment in bicycling promotion, education programs, infrastructure and pro-bicycling policies,” burbles the press release from the Denver Department of Public Works. “More than 800 communities have applied for the designation since the program started, but only 350 have been awarded.
“The City’s efforts to make bicycling easier and more convenient are part of a larger goal to provide residents and visitors with more choices on how to get around town.”
But Evans points out that the city’s ranking really hasn’t improved over the four years since the last awards were given. (In its feedback to the city, the League of American Bicyclists said that Denver is currently falling short in the percentage of people biking and the size of the bike network compared to the transportation network as a whole.) “We’re celebrating coming in second?” he asks. “Denver’s treading water.”
So Denver Bike Week was designed to move things along. So far, it’s promoting events ranging from Coldwell Banker’s Denver Century Ride on June 20 to Evans’s own Denver Cruisers ride (which happens to coincide with Bike to Work Day), to Bike Love on June 27. But any event that celebrates bikes is eligible for listing on the website, denverbikeweek.com. “That’s really the umbrella,” Evans says. “I got up one morning, said ‘Fuck it,’ created the logo and the website, networked, and put nine events together in one day.
“The first year is kind of an experiment to get Denver focused on bike stuff,” he adds. “We’re going to grow the week.”
Evans will be adding events to the Denver Bike Week calendar as he learns of them; contact him here.
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