I’m nursing a Stanley Park Ale in the pulsating hip basement of the Calabash Bistro, with a crowd of cyclist types way cooler than me. It’s Momentum Magazine’s BikeStyle Tour Fashion Show and it’s making me feel like a stowaway in bike geek heaven.
Momentum is ‘North America’s Bike Lifestyle Magazine’. And they created a truly electric atmosphere, blocking off the whole street outside the bistro. A valet bike parking pen was bristling with two wheeled steeds of every pedigree. And after a few cool libations at Calabash, the crowd poured out into the street where models cruised up under Hollywood lights, showing off both bikes and wear. My little iPhone video hardly does it justice.
It was refreshing to see a fashion show where the models actually had something to DO besides look seriously over-serious. They zipped up on their bikes, propped them on kickstands, and even deftly demonstrated technical panniers and folding bike mechanisms. All while looking decidedly UN-GoreTex-ish.
So what was missing?
The mainstream. Yaletown yuppies who think they can’t look macho if they’re not idling in a Bimmer. Burrard street business babes who won’t leave the house without three-inch heels. (Yes, there were models in pumps on the pedals) This whole event was one great inside party, cheering on the announcement of new bike lanes, signing up members for the Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition and geeking out over the latest in bike light design. A hip choir cheering the sermon from the two-wheeled pulpit.
The Green Briefs Two Bits: If we’re going to move cycling to the mainstream, maybe that’s where we have to bring these sorts of events. Perhaps with time we can take over Granville or Robson streets. Momentum Magazine’s half price subscription offer ($10 including a free beer ticket) was a great deal. Picture partnering that with a coupon for a larger chain like Starbucks or Blenz. More on site branding for the event would also help.
But overall I was definitely more excited than bitter. Seeing the style, fun and sheer urban panache that cycling can have just fills me with visions of grandeur, I guess. But I definitely need to upgrade my ‘bikedrobe’ before crashing the next fashionista cycle happening. (See my dream jacket here)
So a tip of the helmet to Mia Kohout, the hard pedaling peeps from Momentum, the cheery crew at Calabash and everyone involved with Bikestyle. Let’s see an even bigger, better more mainstream event next year!
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