(Photos © J. Maus)
Despite intermittent downpours, thousands of people came out to ride on carfree streets during Sunday Parkways in Northeast Portland yesterday. It was the last of five Parkways events this year and people soaked up the fun any way they could.
My family and I joined healthy crowds along NE Ainsworth Street for activities at Alberta Park and Fernhill Park.
The downpours would send some running for cover…
While others — especially kids and the young at heart — reveled in the chance to get wet and pedal through some puddles…
Volunteers along the route made the best of things…
The Cyclameleon — a huge, pedal-powered vehicle dressed up like a chameleon — drew quite a crowd. Artist Tyler Fuqua created the Cyclameleon as an interactive art piece for the recent Burning Man festival…
On a more somber note, friends and family of Mark Bosworth, the Metro employee who has been missing since last Friday (9/16), were set up along Ainsworth to spread the word of his disappearance. Mark lives just a few blocks away from where the tent was set up. His daughters Kelly and Claire as well as his wife Julie were all out, asking Sunday Parkways participants to take a flyer and help in the search effort (I’ll have more about Mark’s search in a separate post later today)…
See more photos from yesterday’s event in the Gallery.
This was the last Sunday Parkways of the year. Special thanks to the Portland Bureau of Transportation and all the volunteers and sponsors that make this event possible. Hopefully next year we can do even more!
great opening photo.
Wished I was there; my bike was a victim of the Murray Boulevard broken glass I keep reporting to Beaverton and they keep doing nothing about…
Cyclameleon was having major difficulty making it up the slight incline while going west on Ainsworth.
The Cyclameleon was designed with the flat Playa of Burning Man. For the upcoming update, Cyclameleon 2.0, we will be adding gearing and quite possibly an electric assist. Keep your eyes peeled!
Had a blast.
Everyone was wearing their helmets besides me and a couple moms.
Noticed a big lack of the 13-30 age group.
Hmmm. I bike in the rain when I need to get somewhere, but I’m not sure that I like it enough to go out and do it “for fun”.
We sat out the noon downpour and started the route just before 1. Took shelter under a tree and broke out the rain gear about 1:30 somewhere along Going. By 2:30 at Woodlawn Park I peeled down to a t-shirt and stowed the barely damp shell; wife kept hers on for warmth. Only a few scattered rain drops after that. I was just slightly damp at the end, not much more than sweating.
The weather did stop some people. The guy at the burrito stand said normally they’d be lined up 20 deep, but we just waltzed right up. We tipped him well but I’m sure it was disappointing for many vendors and performers. Still, everyone I saw was smiling.
It was really touching to meet Mark Bosworth’s family, and the courage and good spirits they displayed are heroic testament to Mark, too. Come home soon, Mark!
I hope the “Rainfish umbrella” will encourage a change for the Portland “would be riders”.
Not an umbrella. But it is a faring. Curious how they handle in a crosswind…seems like if they have much crosswind drag, that’s a nonstarter for me thanks to the Interstate Bridge being too darn narrow in the bike lanes.
This was a super fun ride- despite the rain. Thanks for the great pics!
I was impressed by the crowds – despite the heavy rain. We set up some tents, and had a few hundred people stop by for barbecue, homebrew and cider pressing. A big thanks to everyone who made it out to our place on Emerson. It was a great day.
A good time in the rain with no casualty is always a cause for celebration.
Ohhhh! That was your bike I saw parked there! Kewl!
I had a great time yesterday. My kids (5 and 8) were pysched to be out and active in the rain. We started at 1 PM and sat out the downpour by hiding under a big tree at Fernhill.
Such a great day! Thanks PBOT!!!
Thanks for all the great support for the Cyclameleon! Hope you all liked it. Though with all that rain it probably would have been more fitting to have a giant fish on top instead of a chameleon!
I enjoyed seeing Cyclameleon (just as it turned from 37th onto Ainsworth) and I’m glad you brought it out, but I hope that such large kinetic sculptures remain very scarce at Sunday Parkways. Crowds were considerably thinner due to the rain, yet there were still plenty of bottlenecks, even outside the parks and food areas, and those large objects result in large jam-ups. I’m saying that even as a very slow Parkways rider, passed by most riders and many joggers, but at least there’s lots of room to get by me!
What is the parkways’ purpose (i’m not clear on it). I kinda thought it was for max numbers of ordinary folks to get out there and enjoy car-free lolly-gagging tour around the neighborhood, more like a civilized critical mass. Is there a consensus on the culture of it, how do those other countries (way ahead of the U.S. on Sunday ciclovias) treat it? Sunday-in-the-park, or Mardi-gras?
My sense about it is pretty much like yours, and Maus tweeted the other day that he called it “Critical Mass 2.0” in an interview, maybe a little tongue-in-cheek. The Sunday Parkways website and its Program Summary (history) page are quite open and general about its whole purpose:
On your spectrum, I enjoy the “Sunday in the Park” aspect, with a chance to stride or ride freely (if a bit slowly) through the streets to hubs of dense activity in the parks.
Thanks for enjoying it! My vote is that they widen the streets so we can have more giant art cruising through our awesome city!
the rain was enough to keep the 5 of us away that planned to bike up there…
like cycler said, the rain was enough to keep us away for fun, but if I needed to get somewhere I would…
the kiddo and I took the bus to some indoor fun… the other family that was going with us stayed home…
I had a great time volunteering – even in the dounpour – along Cully. The cycletrack is amazing as were the folks out participating. Hope to see tens of thousands of my closest friends again next year. Hope to see folks take the plunge and be superheroes for a few hours, too!
Hey Paul, were you the superhero doing faux-wheelies on your chopper-bike with a flame job, and going “vroom-vroom”? That made me grin ear-to-ear… thanks! 🙂
Glad that I finally got to ride Cully. The cycletrack is cool and gives a new feel to the whole street…much improved! One tiny nitpick on the design is the square curb on the right edge of the track. While not real high, it’s still high enough to catch an unwary pedal on a downstroke. A rolled or lower curb could avoid that hazard.
John and I went out to enjoy the last Sunday Parkways of 2011, the third year (?) We sheltered under some trees a couple of times, but it was delightful to be out with so many other folks enjoying themselves. Thank you Sunday Parkways, Portland Police, the many volunteers and the partipants.
Yet another missed opportunity for the “Rainfish umbrella”. I can understand why more than a few folks didn’t make it.
I rode from Mt. Tabor at noon, got totally drenched by rain and by vehicle splash. Glad it was at least a summery, warm rain. Fun times, get to say I did all parkways for the year!
Interesting route this year and enjoyed seeing some of the new bike-specific changes.
It was great to get to ride with the streets not quite so crowded, and it was good practice to remember how to ride in the rain period after so many perfect weather months.
I think this was the rainiest Sunday Parkways in 3 years, but it was fun, and if you ride all year, rain is no big deal anyway. Everybody I saw seemed to be having a good time, the kids especially. Thanks for all of the volunteers who made it happen. I f you haven’t volunteered yet,please consider doing so next year, it is fun and an easy way to give back to the community.
Volunteered at an intersection which was fun plus it was a great networking opportunity…got to meet and/or chat with: Mia Burke, Roger Geller, Rich Cassidy, Michael Anderson, Janis McDonald and Roger Averbeck. Also helped two newbie cyclists be more comfortable on their bikes. Plus, it was an excuse to wear my neon pink, marabou-trimmed crushed velvet cape. Thank you Portland!!
Glad to see so many intrepid folks out walking and biking!
If you want more opportunities to practice biking in the rain there’s a new series of bike rides for beginners from Portland By Cycle (part of PBOT Tranportation Options – the folks who bring you Sunday Parkways).
Our Autumn Ride series will have 4 FREE rides on Saturdays in October and November – we’ll roll rain or shine, and keep smiles at the ready to serve as our umbrellas. Check out the schedule of rides here:
The first ride is this Saturday from Irving Park, 10 am, with the theme “Reduce, Reuse, Bicycle.” Hope you can join us!
We had a great time at the Bike Temple on NE 20th and Going, outside the Xhurch.
See a video of Brother Dan preaching from the Portland 2030 Bicycle Master Plan at
Thanks much to PBOT, Options, Council, PPB and everyone else that made this happen.