A bit of rain can’t dampen spirits at The Ladds 500


*All photos by Eric Thornburg/No.Lens.Cap on Instagram

Part race, party relay, part party: The Ladds 500 is quintessential Portland.

Back for its fourth edition after it was an instant hit in its inaugural running in 2016, the free and unsanctioned event drew hundreds to Ladd Circle Park on Saturday. Teams with names like Huffy The Vampire Slayer, Laddimir Putins, Scoot Along, and Aggressive Dolphins pedaled for hours in the rain to complete a century by riding 500 laps of the 0.2 mile circle.

Photographer Eric Thornburg (No.Lens.Cap on Instagram) was there to capture some of the magic. As I looked through his images and saw other posts about the event, it struck me that — while we grapple with how quickly Portland is changing and losing parts of its “weird” spirit — events like The Ladds 500 seem to take on even greater meaning.

After all the changes, we still have people who dream up and execute crazy biking ideas. And when free bike fun is done right, the community responds in a big way!

Just look at more of Eric’s images below and see the wide variety of people who came out to “do something stupid” in the middle of a usually quiet neighborhood on a rainy Saturday…

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Thanks David Robinson, Eric Ivy, and everyone else who came together and made this event happen.

For more coverage, see this video from KOIN-TV.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and jonathan@bikeportland.org

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Jimmy
Jimmy
3 years ago

The park is a total mud pit now. 🙁

todd boulanger
todd boulanger
3 years ago

Such good clean Portland bike fun!!

(Though I hope the turf in the circle survived…perhaps someone needs to see if it needs any post event TLC?)

Beth H
Beth H
3 years ago

A closer inspection the day after the event showed that most of the mud would wash away after a few days of rain. The organizers are consulting with Portland Parks for more information; but for now it was decided to let the grass heal on its own.
Thanks to the organizers for a fun, joyful event!

Mike Quigley
Mike Quigley
3 years ago

Portland appears to be the only place in the world where bike riders like to dress up in goofy costumes and do mass rides, regularly. Weird, but what the heck.

mh
3 years ago

I want captions on the pictures!

Jan V
Jan V
3 years ago

Lots of smiles in those miles. Let’s do something stupid again next year.

hotrodder
hotrodder
3 years ago
Reply to  Jan V

Let’s do something stupid Thursday night!

Matt
Matt
3 years ago

Is that Timbers ‘keeper Steve Clark in the first batch of pics (upper right)?!

joan
3 years ago

Ladds 500 is such a fun event! It’s a great combination of riding and chatting with friends and meeting new folks and trying out interesting new bikes.

EricIvy
3 years ago

Thanks for the coverage as always Jonathon! Excellent pictures by Eric Thornburg! (I’m biased) In full disclosure, I didn’t have anything to do with the event, I’m just a huge proponent! It’s probably my favorite event of the year because I get to see all my friends who’ve been hibernating for the winter. As Nick Gallo put it, it’s the Pedalpalooza Pre-Party!