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7 things to know for a great Bowie Vs Prince ride

Posted by on June 10th, 2016 at 12:55 pm


Ride co-leaders Lillian Karabaic and Tim Nakayama at last year’s Bowie Vs Prince.
(Photos: Lillian Karabaic)

The recent deaths of rock titans David Bowie and Prince have had a unique impact on Portland because of the beloved tradition of the Bowie Vs Prince ride. The woman who created the ride, Lillian Karabaic, sent us a few last-minute reminders before it rolls for the last time this Saturday (6/11) at 7:00 pm.

For the 9th and final time, Bowie Vs Prince will ride tomorrow through the streets of Portland. For some folks, they’ve never missed this ride, and for others, it will be their first time. Below are a few things to keep in mind before you roll out on Saturday night…

1. Best things to Bring for Dancing in The Streets

Bring snacks, water, lights, a bike lock, your ID and your dancing shoes. If you can, bring a candle for a memorial. If you usually hit bed early, I’d recommend a disco nap in the evening, as this ride will go late.

Special stickers have been made for this year's ride.

Special stickers have been made for this year’s ride.

2. Major Tom to Ground Kontrol

Team Prince starts at Sewallcrest Park (SE 31st and Market) and will meet up quickly with Team Bowie, who starts at Holladay Park (NE 11th and Multnomah). It’s totally okay to start at a different start point than your “allegience” – we’re all friends here. The ride route will be posted day of, but will loop through innner SE to downtown, and end in Sellwood. You’ll love the end party with dancing, karaoke, a costume contest, and a photobooth, so stay til the end if you can (beverages available, cards and cash accepted.) You catch up with the ride by following @anomalily or @dirtydiablorides on Twitter.

3. Purple Rain (won’t stop us)

Even if it’s raining, the ride will ride on. Take inspiration from Prince’s amazing rain-soaked superbowl performance. If the rain is really coming down, the route will be shortened from ~9 miles to ~5 miles. The endpoint is covered and inside!

A limited number of souvenir pennants are available for purchase.

A limited number of souvenir pennants are available for purchase.


4. You Remind Me of the Babe

While the end party spot is 21+, families are totally welcome on the ride and the route is designed to be cargo-bike and slow-bike friendly at around ~8-9MPH roll. Just keep any babies away from the Goblin King!

5. Who helps us party like it’s 1999?

A small group of amazing volunteers work their sparkling butts off to make the ride an awesome experience, plus local business sponsors that donate materials and cash to offset some of the costs. Give some love to Clinton Street Theater, Berkshire Ginsberg LLC, Montucky Cold Snack, Go By Bike, and AnomaLily Consulting for helping make the ride possible.

6. The (Wo)Man Who Sold the World

There’s some seriously schwank pennants available to buy to support Bowie Vs Prince expenses. They’re limited edition (only 50) so reserve yours before the ride.

7. Ch-ch-ch-changes

Is this really the last ever Bowie Vs Prince? Only time will tell.

For more great rides all month long check out the calendar at

— Jonathan Maus, (503) 706-8804 –

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  • Avatar
    Lillian June 10, 2016 at 12:58 pm
  • Adam H.
    Adam H. June 10, 2016 at 1:03 pm

    Thanks for organizing this event! Looking forward to it! Are costumes required or can I just bring my love for these great musicians?

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      Lillian June 10, 2016 at 1:03 pm

      Not required, though a little dazzle is always encouraged. No one turned away for lack of duds, obviously!

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    Todd Boulanger June 10, 2016 at 4:58 pm

    Go Lillian!

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      Todd Boulanger June 10, 2016 at 5:00 pm

      Sorry I am going to miss it…if anyone finds a spare BvP sticker on the ground…grab it for me…there is a beer reward!

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    Respect the road June 12, 2016 at 12:08 am

    I start this post expecting pushback, though I feel that if read critically a mutual respect should be assumed and shared.
    I am a native Portlander who is proud of our bike friendly city, and frequently bike myself. However on this occasion I found myself driving home late Saturday night on hwy 99 and found myself blocked off by a very rude biker preaching about sharing the road.
    Now correct me if I’m wrong, but sharing the road suggests following the rules of said road, like if you get a red light you stop and yield to those with a green. When you block off three light cycles on a major road it makes it difficult to share the road with confidence.
    Please get your groups to understand this simple sentiment, it will go a long way towards more bike friendly roads in general if your otherwise amazing congregations also respect those of us on 4 wheels.

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    • Adam H.
      Adam H. June 12, 2016 at 10:16 pm

      This was a specific bike-based event. Think of it as a parade. You would patiently wait for a parade to go by, wouldn’t you?

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      RushHourAlleycat June 13, 2016 at 12:56 am

      So, as long as we don’t slow you down, or inconvenience you in any way, you’ll do us the courtesy to allow us to share the road with you?


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      Buzz June 13, 2016 at 10:27 am

      Motorists definition of ‘Share the Road’ – Get the F*** Out of My Way!

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    EricIvy June 13, 2016 at 12:08 pm

    My Opinion: It is good behavior and safer to “cork” intersections for large group rides. It would be much more dangerous for a large group to get split up, thus allowing cars to turn into the middle of the ride. The cars would immediately be frustrated that they can’t get by the mass of people, only to be swarmed by more people who caught said car once their light turned green and they caught up. Confrontations would be hard to avoid, and if the car tries to pass the group or make evasive turns, danger would ensue.

    Corking also allows a large mass of people to move through an area quickly and on to the next area. Imagine how long it would take 1000 riders to get through downtown if they all obeyed lights? It would seriously snarl up the entire area. So please pardon the slight inconvenience to avoid a larger one.

    In fact, the Portland Police tell officers to use discretion when it comes to corking, because it is a safe tactic for group rides:

    People on bikes wait for large masses of cars in our way nearly every day we ride. We ask that drivers can do the same every once in a while please 🙂

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