The last bike show I went to in NYC was in 2003 when Montauk ride guru, Glen Goldstein was throwing them in the Armory on Lexington ave. He wanted to diversify the show from just being a bunch of brand name outfitters showing off their latest wears to something more social and embrace the outlaw NYC culture that was blossoming at the time. The last one he threw had a group ride (dare we say critical mass-don’t-ask-for permission style) mutant bikes and a DJ accompanied ride-your-bike-in-a-circle dance party, yes indoors. Glen was rewarded with his outreach by that one being the last show. They’re may have been other factors involved and definite room for improvement, but the thought to have bike show was a good idea and perhaps ahead of it’s time. It was definitely a reflection of where the biking community was at.
Now fast forward to the present and the bike show is back here in NYC. In fact we now have three of them including the Bike Expo and Grand Fondo May 20th…More about these other shows…soon. Seems like the bicycle is more mature, more accepted and definitely in fashion here in NYC. The first show, I attended last weekend, was in it’s second incarnation called the New Amsterdam bicycle show. This was put on by the advocacy group Transportation Alternatives and entertainment guide, Nypress.com and Dutch Airline company KLM, who actually embrace bicycle travel unlike the US. The New Am show had the same intentions of the past bike shows, to bring together bike organizations, culture, fashion and products under one banner, right around the kick-off to the bicycle riding season. Around 4,500 people attended the two day event which had food, a DJ, a ton of bicycle stuff, a fashion show and guest speakers. It was held in the one level event space, west of Soho called the Skylight Soho.
My first impressions was this was a good amalgamation of where the biking culture is today in NYC. Of course the corporate name brands were there as the back bone of the industry but there were a lot of custom ETSY, style new comers, leading the charge for making biking more stylish and more fashionable. Much like the movements in Brooklyn to make homemade chocolate, beer and pickles, etc., the bicycle world is also having this kind of renaissance with individual companies making everything from lock holders, to reflective clothing and especially different styles of bags. It was also nice to see some real stewards of the bicycle culture in attendance, people who really pioneered the scene, back before the green painted bike lanes and debates about “All these damn bikes.”
I attended the event with the wife and three year old who despite the short attention span, enjoyed seeing everything and getting free stuff…what’s a trade show without schwag…right?
Hey it’s Bike Month!
To find out what’s going on Transportation Alternatives, has set up a new web page which will list all the biking events for the year including this month (MAY) which is bike month.
Perhaps this is a good time to check the map and make sure your ride isn’t being categorized as “abandoned,” or if you have a local neglected bicycle in your neighborhood, add it to the map.
Here is more from the site:
What counts as an abandoned bike? That is determined by these criteria set by the DSNY:
is not rideable
appears to be crushed or unusable
parts are missing other than seat or front wheel
bicycle has a flat or missing tires
the handlebars or pedals are damaged, or existing forks, frames or rims are bent
75 percent or more of the bicycle is rusted
The bike must be locked to public property including: light poles, bus stop signs, parking meters, trees, tree pit railings and bike racks.
DSNY says they receive many calls about possible abandoned bikes, “but upon inspection by our field supervisor a large percentage of the bicycles don’t meet the criteria to be classified as derelict.”
ADD TO THE MAP
So if you spot an abandoned bike, snap a picture and send it to email@example.com. If the location feature on your phone or camera is enabled for photos, we can pinpoint the exact location right away. Otherwise, include information in your email about where the bike is and what else you know about it, and we’ll manually put it on the map.
1078 Fulton Street (Btwn Franklin Ave. & Classon Ave.) Brooklyn (guess that parts obvious)
Despite what the following description says on their website…they are open!
Got this on twitter yesterday:
Welcome to the hood!
From their website:
Bicycle Roots will be the largest woman-owned bike shop in New York City. We’re not open yet, but look for us in June 2012 at 1078 Fulton Street, between Franklin Avenue and Classon Avenue, in Brooklyn.
Here’s what you can expect to find at our beautiful store in Bed-Stuy:
– A huge selection of bikes for commuters and recreational riders
– Accessories for every aspect of city riding
– Friendly salespeople who actually listen to your needs
– Honest mechanics who can make your bike work better than ever before
Even though the shop isn’t open yet, we always love to hear from you. You can get in touch by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This site will soon host a full-featured website and online store. In the meantime, here are some other places on the internet where you can find our updates:
(photo by: Moscamaurer)
Yes the polar bears are pissed off about the loss of their natural habitat due to humanity’s pollution and climate change.
Their anger was expressed on Sunday with Time’s Up bicycle activists taking it to the streets in their annual Polar Bear Earth Day ride, which was canceled on Earth Day (4/23/12), due to rain…Irony?
Here is a brief recap and slideshow from the NY Times local East Village section:
Sunday’s Brrr-illiant Polar Bear Bike Ride
By: Tim Schreier
Published: April, 30th 2012
The reopening of First Park wasn’t the only thing washed out on Earth Day. The rain also put a damper on the Polar Bear Bike Ride, an annual fete organized by East Village-based organization Time’s Up. Lucky for us, it was rescheduled and took place yesterday in Union Square. The group has a knack for decorating bikes to send a message – as you can see from our slideshow it was on full display at the event, meant to encourage others to reduce their carbon footprint by cycling.
O.G. himself, Ice-T, shooting an episode of Law and Order, SVU.
Here is owner Joe Nocella’s attempt at capturing the scene:
Joe said Ice-T said his shop was the “Mercedes F*&king Benz of bike shops.” Then started asking him about fixed gears and how to avoid potholes. Joe also mentioned how gracious everyone was in the cast and crew.
Sweet…this Sh*t really laid my foundation for a love of hip-hop, not to mention it was videos like these and MTV raps that made me want to move to NYC even more.
MayDay is upon us. It will, no doubt, be one to remember. But before the American Spring, before Occupy Wall Street, before the popular uprisings in the oil lands, cyclists in New York City and around the world made the world we wanted to see and celebrated free community in Critical Mass. Since August of 2004, cyclists of NYC have resisted Tonight and the coming days could be, should be, momentous. To be sure the corporate state and its violent thugs will be out in force to control even our most peaceful movements, our bike riding, our dancing in the streets. But what else can we do while the world is spoiled, the old world burns? Still we ride, still we dance. Still we come together with open ears, eyes, mouths and hearts. Together to make the world we want.
7pm Union Square North TONIGHT! THE LAST FRIDAY OF THE MONTH!
Now, for the bad news. I am selling my soul out to all-powerful capital, so that I may pay off loans, debt, and make rent on a place to rest my stuff. Its kinda a shitty situation, but I have been ignoring some basic responsibilites for a while, and I gotta make this work deadline. TONIGHT! So I dunno when I will be able to join the 5 day orgy of Critical Mass riding/walking/dancing/talking/chanting that is coming to Manhattan and the rest of the world this weekend. Infinite sadness!
If I don’t make it, please consider then communicate these humble suggestions (if you are feeling like bike ninjas):
1) Make lots of friends and new contacts before the ride.
2) Try walking in a single file loop with your bikes before you roll. Keep it moving!
3) Ride to or regroup at Tompkins Square, Washingtons Square, or Madison Square Parks.
4) Maybe ride by the Williamsburg Bridge if the cops follow you.
5) Definitely ride the Wall Street.
6) Film the police.
7) TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF AND EACH OTHER. RIDE SAFE!
I will try to get together a more detailed listing of bike-able happenings in the next five days, but until then check this out, I am sure you will find something to keep you occupied!