Laughing Planet Cafe is the official sponsor of our 2009 Pedalpalooza Coverage

Jousting, donuts, kid fair, beer: Something for everyone at this year’s Multnomah County Bike Fair

Posted by on June 26th, 2009 at 1:56 pm

Mult Co Bike Fair (MCBF)-18.jpg

On the midway at MCBF in 2008.
(Photo © J. Maus)

“It’s the bike-gasm!”

That’s how the Multnomah County Bike Fair was explained to me on my first time around back in 2005.

The description holds true. After 17 exhausting, exuberant days of Pedalpalooza, fatigue is setting in (and there were even rumors on Twitter of a pedalfluenza outbreak). A gentle but seriously fun sort of decompression is needed after spending over two weeks on such a cloud. Enter MCBF, the closing event of Pedalpalooza, a culmination of all the creativity, energy, and socializing of the last two and a half weeks.

Organized by Shift, run by a committed volunteer team on funds from beer and t-shirt sales, some donations, and seed money raised at Filmed By Bike, MCBF comes from the community and is for the community. And as the broader Portland community increasingly embraces bicycling, the fair gets bigger each year.

Story continues below


The fair is tomorrow, June 27, from 2pm to 7pm at Colonel Summers Park (SE 20th & Belmont). This year’s party includes:

– Changes to the events stage setup. The good news is that this year the beer garden will be all ages! There will be specially-marked wristbands for those over 21, but everyone is welcome to come see the performances and listen to the bands. The bad news is that you won’t be able to bring your own water into the beer garden — but water will be available for you to fill your bottle once inside. Beer this year is locally brewed by the bike-friendly local Widmer Bros.

Mult Co Bike Fair (MCBF)-34.jpg

The Sprockettes always wow the crowds
(Photo © J. Maus)

– For the waaay under 21 set, this year there will be a Kids Area at the fair, including bike decorating (sponsored by SCRAP and Clever Cycles), a reading area (for kids to read to their bikes), and some programmed events including Bike Story Time at 3:00, relay races at 3:30, a bike beauty contest at 4:00, and a bike parade at 4:30.

Northwest Trail Alliance is bringing their mountain bike skills park/obstacle course, after it was well-received at Sunday Parkways last weekend.

– Amazing booths on the midway! We’ll be hosting a summer BikeCraft with nearly 20 local crafters selling their wares. The Portland Mercury will have a booth featuring a trackstand competition with a water balloon component, and quality prizes. Jeff Bernards will be there as always with his Protect Your World program, offering heavily subsidized helmets and lights. Also rumored to have a presence are the Bicycle Transportation Alliance, the Portland Bicycle Tours bike repair bus will be there, Zipcar, the North Freaks will have a photo booth for you and your bike, Providence Bridge Pedal, Stumptown Printers, Free School will be hosting workshops, and more…

– Food! Good stuff this year, including Pirate Dog’s ‘Eat or Die’ sausage and veggie dogs (in the beer garden; on the midway you’ll find local by-bike soup, bread, and salad by Soup Cycle (who we profiled earlier this year), Uruapan burritos, the big, pink Voodoo Donut truck, pedal-powered smoothies, and the Staccato Gelato bike.

The best news is that the weather should be in the 80s (last year it was around 100 degrees). Bring your bikeyest outfits, your water bottles, your sunscreen, and your Pedalpalooza spirit — we’ll see you there!

Event details:
What: Multnomah County Bike Fair
When: Saturday, June 27, 2009, 2pm – 7pm
Where: Colonel Summers Park, SE 20th and Belmont

  • Nevin June 26, 2009 at 2:05 pm

    Sounds awesome! In case people don’t already know, here are the logistics:

    2:00pm – 7:00pm
    Col. Summers Park, SE 20th Ave and Belmont St

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Dutch June 26, 2009 at 3:50 pm

    Dont forget about all the crazy bike events thatll be going on inside the beer garden. Death Jam, Derbies of all sorts, Beer Bungie, Tall Bike Jousting and more!

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • ScottG June 26, 2009 at 4:25 pm

    I keep missing the Sprockettes’ shows. This time I’ll have to see them for certain.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • J June 26, 2009 at 6:43 pm

    Is there a schedule somewhere? I can’t be there from 2 – 7.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • David June 26, 2009 at 8:33 pm

    damn! I HATE having to work weekends!

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Ethan June 26, 2009 at 9:14 pm

    Would I be stoned if I showed up with a long-lost Shift banner?

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Marc June 27, 2009 at 12:18 am

    We’re still looking for more bike workshops so if you got skills to share, even just fixing a flat tire, contact us at the free school @ before 2pm or just come to our education space at the fair.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • D.R. Miller June 27, 2009 at 12:46 am

    Historical note, “Bikegasm” was the other name proposed (by Amy Stork) in 2003 and seriously considered by Shift for the name of the whole 2+ weeks of bike fun we call Pedalpalooza. In 2003 it was “Mini BikeSummer” (after Portland hosting Bikesummer in 2002) in 2004 Pedalpalooza, but that name was considered a sort of compromise until something better was agreed on. The pro-con on “Pedalpalooza” versus something else (Bikegasm and others) went on for awhile, but sometimes inertia is a good thing, and it just stayed Pedalpalooza.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • mabsf June 27, 2009 at 10:33 am

    Don’t forget that there will be also a bunch of Kid events this year:
    Relay races, bike decorating, reading to your bike and a root beer garden will keep the kidiepalooza set busy… sorry no Skuut jousting yet!

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Greg Raisman June 28, 2009 at 3:05 pm

    More photos and video. I *heart* Portland.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • carye bye June 28, 2009 at 8:44 pm

    D.R. Miller reminded me that I HAD been to the very first MCBF in 2003! And I remember being at one of those heated meetings trying to figure out how to rename Pedalpalooza. I know that I definitely did NOT like Bikegasm. It’s funny how even though Pedalpalooza is still really dorky, it doesn’t make me cringe anymore, but we just couldn’t find another name. This year of PP was especially awesome. I found a balance of just enough, not too much, but still can’t see the floor of my bedroom with all my costumes strewn about. Thanks to everyone who led rides, and volunteered to make Bike Fun super Fun.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • jrdpdx June 29, 2009 at 6:15 am

    my 4 y/o son woke up Sun morning and wanted to go back to the fair and ride the Mtn Bike course again. We had to drag him away. A Great day, thanks to all the sponsors and hard work

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • revphil June 29, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    i thought it was dat who coined “bikegazim”

    still cringing.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • D.R. Miller June 29, 2009 at 1:58 pm

    Ah, well I guess we should ask him or Amy. Memory is a funny thing when it comes to details. Regardless, the BG/PP/MCBF name debate was a minor issue in the larger scheme of things, and both their contributions were huge. (along with so many others. Before we all get too old and addled, someone should do an oral history of that period of Portland bikeyness, the “shift” from disconnected ridership to full-on quasi-organized bike-based social phenomenon. Would be fascinating (okay, maybe just to a certain geeky segment) to hear/read all the overlapping stories/versions from the “cast of characters.”)

    Recommended Thumb up 0