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Filmed by Bike rocks Clinton Street, and it’s not over yet

Posted by on April 20th, 2009 at 11:07 am

Filmed by Bike 2009-7

Big crowds inside and out at opening
night of Filmed by Bike.
Photo Gallery
(Photos © J. Maus)

Filmed by Bike‘s Opening Night Throwdown street party was the perfect way to kick of Portland’s bike season. On Friday night, nearly 1,000 people flocked to SE Clinton street to revel in the scene both inside and outside the theater.

Whether you were there as a film buff, a bike lover, as an excuse to party, or all of the above — chances are you weren’t disappointed. After six years of putting on this event (and countless others), bike event mastermind Ayleen Crotty put all the right ingredients together for another memorable opening night.

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Double dutch.

Those ingredients included a racuous performance by the Last Regiment of Sycopated Drummers, plenty of $3 New Belgium beers (Ayleen says they went through 10 kegs), fresh tamales and tacos, plenty of secure bike parking (half the street was full), and, oh yeah, plenty of great films.

Other highlights for me (and I haven’t even gotten to the films yet) were all the great characters that showed up…

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Drew Kinney (he organized the Oregon Bike Polo Championships) from Northeast Portland showed up pulling a trailer with three polo bikes, mallets, and safety cones, and proceeded to join friends for a few matches of polo while they waited for the movies.

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Mark Allyn and his amazing
rainbow bike.

Southeast Portland’s “Master of Light” Mark Allyn showed up with his latest creations. Mark is the guy famously known for his hand-crafted, fiber-optic, rainbow light suits and light bike. He also likes to weld bike-inspired jewelry out of kitchen utensils, including this very cool bottle cage made out of spoons.

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Don’t mess with Team Beer.

Ayleen’s roots in the community run deep, and it’s always fun to see the diverse crowd she pulls into her events. As I was watching the party unfold, up rolled several members of Portland’s fabled bike gang, C.H.U.N.K. 666. C.H.U.N.K. used to much more active several years ago, but these days they’ve moved on to other things, so for a Portland bike geek like me it was cool to see Thud, Silken, Lance E. Pants, and others on their freaky steeds.

Speaking of bike gangs/clubs, the tradition is alive and well in Portland. Team Beer was on security detail, donned in their new denim vests with the new Team Beer patch. The classic Schwinn loving Belligerantes also represented, as did North Freak, Zoobomb (Zane and Cupcake gave the crowd a demonstration of their amazing, dual-bike Hamster Ball contraption), Team Cthulhu (with their fresh new team kits), and others (I even heard rumors of a new, all-female tall-bike gang with a political action bent).

Throw all of those folks in and mix them in with all the other people who showed up (included about 50 people from Seattle, who tried to take over a local Motel 6), and you’ve got a street party to remember.

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Ayleen getting the squeeze
from her friend Gregg.

Have I mentioned all the double-dutch action? Yes, double dutch is hot right now and there were several ropes spinning on the street.

I chatted with several folks who were having so much fun at the street party, they decided to skip the films altogether and catch them during the week (the fest goes through Thursday).

I was lucky enough to catch one of the screenings (unfortunately it meant that I missed the performance of Chain Reaction, Portland’s all-male bike dance crew). I sat in back of the sell-out, standing-room-only crowd and thoroughly enjoyed the “Ruckus in the Street” lineup.

Watching the “Crimanimalz” ride through standstill Los Angeles freeway traffic was inspiring and made me want to mount up a camera and hit I-5. I was laughing out loud at the locally-made “Wild Creatures of North America” spoof. Actor Quentin Welch did his best Crocodile Hunter impression and was on the hunt for wild bike racks (yes, bike racks). The writing on this one was brilliant.

I also enjoyed learning about Uncle Jerry in “Next Stop the Moon“. Jerry is a 60-something retiree who lives in Arizona and is the uncle of Portlander (and filmmaker) Brighton West. Brighton chronicled his uncle’s quest to ride 100,000 miles before his 70th birthday. It was a touching story about a man whose arthritis makes it hard for him to even walk, but who can bike pain-free about 20 miles a day.

At intermission, emcees Dan and Joanna raffled thousands of dollars in great prizes.

But wait, there’s more!

The fest continues today through Thursday. I asked Ayleen for a few highlights from each day:

MONDAY (4/20)

On Monday we’ll have Jerry, the subject of Portlander Brighton West’s film “Next Stop the Moon.” Jerry is Brighton’s uncle, and he’s visiting from Arizona.

TUESDAY (4/21)

Hi-may Rivera, who produced the movie “Re”… is in town from Boise, ID and will be speaking about his artwork (the subject of his film) after the screening on Tuesday.

*We’ve also booked Missionary Chocolates to come out on Monday and Tuesday to pass out their delicious chocolates for the first 50 attendees. It’s our way of saying “Welcome to summer” to the bike community. This weather is definitely something to be celebrated!

WEDNESDAY (4/22)

Clarence lands tomorrow and we’ll be prepping for the Wednesday show probably Tues night. Let me know if you want in on that session to hear how we decide how to do what we’re going to do for Wed (colorful, punchy commentary between the movies, an awesome selection).

THURSDAY (4/23)

Greatest Hits night with stuff from all seven years (!) and an after party at the Night Light (20th and Clinton).

Learn more about all the Filmed by Bike goodness at FilmedByBike.org. Browse our photo gallery here.

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Thank you — Jonathan

11 Comments
  • Ayleen April 20, 2009 at 11:18 am

    So fun! Thanks Jonathan. Your photos are excellent. What happens when you’ve got Dutch doing double dutch? Triple dutch?

    Seriously though, I have been trying to get a double dutch crew out there for YEARS so as great as all the different aspects of the night were, maybe this one was my favorite!

    I look forward to seeing people at the movies all week long!

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  • derrickito April 20, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    highlights:
    -hitting vegans with meatsticks.
    -trying to sell some chick at pirate island to my friend paul who promptly told me she “wasn’t a damn piece of meat!”
    -bikes everywhere
    -somehow making the opposite of friends wherever i went.

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  • justa April 20, 2009 at 2:36 pm

    Anyone who’s into sweet double-dutch action–Agent Standard D (of Sprockettes fame) currently hosts recurring double dutch fun time at (where else?) Colonel Summers park, every Tuesday afternoon/evening. I’m sure she’d love to see you there!

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  • Dutch April 20, 2009 at 3:08 pm

    the double dutch was my fav part. the whole block party was killer, and the afterparty at pirate island was about as good as it gets.

    the party was a bit too good, and I couldnt pull myself inside, but its awesome cause theres movies going on all week! Especially cant wait for thursday, the best of FBB is always amazing.

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  • Sysfail April 20, 2009 at 4:28 pm

    FYI: Dropout Bike Club was there too! I was the guy riding through the crowd with the sound system at the end trying to get everybody to go on ride to pirate island.

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  • Dave April 20, 2009 at 9:00 pm

    I know my friends who live in the neighborhood really enjoyed being kept up till 4 a.m. Especially the several drunken fights, and the loud sound systems being towed through the neighborhoods to make sure everybody was paying attention.

    Way to make a positive impression, people.

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  • revphil April 21, 2009 at 5:20 am

    1st amendment establishes the right for people to get together but it is rather vague about the protection against being disturbed.

    That said Im sorry your friends were kept up so late. When I left around 1:30 the sound system had already rolled out, so it COULD be that your friend was dealing with people coming from the half dozen other bars in that area.

    Thanks for a great time Ayleen!

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  • Shake April 21, 2009 at 1:46 pm

    Never made it inside, but had a great time in and out of the beer garden. The tacos saved me from an early night.

    Summer kicks ass.

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  • SkidMark April 21, 2009 at 3:01 pm

    Dave: all that stuff you are talking about happened way before bar closing time. It wasn’t a fight per se, it was a drunk (non-cyclist) harassing two female cylists. I guess you can still blame the cyclist for just being there, like when we get hit by cars.

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  • Dave April 22, 2009 at 11:25 am

    That’s not the way I heard it, but in any case being loud and obnoxious in a residential neighborhood isn’t suddenly OK because it happens before last call. Nobody’s saying we can’t have a good time on a beautiful spring night – just that when some of the hardest partying people I know call the next day to say “Dude, your bike friends are messed up,” well – that’s a special kind of achievement we might not want to be so proud of.

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  • fr4 April 23, 2009 at 8:10 am

    As a resident of this neighborhood I sympathize with what Dave is saying. My experience with the opening night in 2008 was so bad (trash, noise, drunks) I intentionally made plans to be out of town this year. Sounds like I made a wise decision.

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