Slideshow: The faces of Mini Bike Winter

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Slideshow below
(Photos © J. Maus)

For some reason, I just can’t get last weekend’s Mini Bike Winter event out of my mind. By all accounts, it was just a massively fun and amazing weekend.

I took somewhere in the realm of 2,000+ images in two days and I’m still having fun looking through them. I especially like looking at photos of all the interesting people that were involved with the event. On that note, I’ve put together a little slideshow with some of the portraits I snapped.

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The Art of Mini Bike Winter

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Mini Bike Winter (MBW) — the Zoobomb-created event that mixes gravity, competition, mini-bikes, and fun — is less than one month away. This will be the fifth year in a row the event has offered salvation from our winter bike-fun doldrums

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Guest article: Crash knocks out teeth, community helps put them back

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Carl Larson

This article was written by Carl Larson.

A nearly ubiquitous presence on the Portland bike scene, Carl’s done everything from delivering bike maps as an employee of the City of Portland’s Transportation Options division, to working with the Regional Arts and Culture Council on the Zoobomb Pyle art rack project.

Few people move between Portland’s many bike clubs, organizations and sub-cultures with as much panache and dedication as Carl.

In this article, he shares a heart-warming story of tragedy and triumph within the Zoobomb community.


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Artistic duo chosen to create Zoobomb Pyle

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Vanessa Renwick
Photo © Montana Maurice

As part of the process to transform their iconic “Pyle” of mini-bikes into official public art, the Zoobombers have chosen two artists to help turn their visions into a reality.

According to regular Zoobomber Carl Larson — who (along with a group of others) is working with the Regional Arts and Culture Council (RACC) on the project — they have chosen the dynamic duo of Brian Borrello and Vanessa Renwick.

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Finalists chosen for Zoobomb Pyle rack project

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The Pyle, at its current
location on SW 9th.
(Photos © Jonathan Maus)

Even though it’s been over a year since Zoobombers first met with PDOT about it, the process to integrate the iconic mound of mini-bikes known as the Zoobomb Pyle into a piece of official public art is now moving along quickly.

After the announcement of the project in October, the Regional Arts and Culture Council (RACC) received 14 applications from local artists hoping to build a new rack for the beloved cluster of mini-bikes.

The bikes are maintained by a group of Portlanders who like to take them on the MAX train to Washington Park and then “Zoobomb” down the steep and windy streets of the West Hills every Sunday night.

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Builders, crowds impress at handmade bicycle show

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Crowds were thick all day.
View slideshow below
(Photos © Jonathan Maus)

I still can’t decide what was more impressive at yesterday’s Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show; the crowds or the builders.

One of the event organizers, Austin Ramsland, says that over 1,800 people attended the show. They were treated to an unprecedented display of building prowess from well over 20 Oregon-based builders. It was a show of talent and enthusiasm for bikes that many of us knew existed, but to see and feel it all in one room was simply breathtaking.

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Zoobomb “Pyle” will become official public art

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[Editor’s note: This is the first article by new contributor Carl Larson. I hope to bring you more of his writing in the future.]

Zoobomb pile

The iconic Zoobomb Pyle
will get a new home.
(File photo © Jonathan Maus)

The “Zoobomb Pyle,” that colorful jumble of janky kids bikes chained to the bike rack across from Rocco’s Pizza at SW 10th and Oak, has
finally been recognized as “art.”

Thanks to pressure from Commissioner Sam Adams‘ office, the Regional Arts and Culture Council (RACC) has given the project a budget of $10,000 (that’s less than 20% of the budget for “Pod,” the enormous metal shuttlecock-on-a-tripod that usually ends up in the background of tourists’ pictures of the beloved Pyle).

The RACC — in concert with PDOT and Zoobomb — plans to build a purpose-built structure at W Burnside and SW Stark to which the bicycles can be locked without the threat of citations or removal by the city.

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Freak bikes, minis will take part in Oregon Handmade Bike Show

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Zoobomb Century

Tackling the hill on a freaky mini.
(Photo © Jonathan Maus)

Coming up in November is the first-ever Oregon Handmade Bicycle Show. Among the 25 vendors are some of Oregon’s most talented bicycle craftsmen.

Several well-known custom bike makers from Portland will be exhibiting. But in addition to the usual suspects, and in a nod to Portland’s distinct brand of bike building, the show will also feature builders known for a different kind of custom bike; minis and freak bikes.

Yes, alongside $3,000, meticulously crafted frames made to exacting tolerances will be bike creations culled from local dumpsters, then welded and bolted together by the DIY genius of Zoobombers and members of the Dropout Bike Club.

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Zoobombers help re-design the Willamette Week

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Well, not exactly.

But reports are coming in that the Willamette Week (a free weekly newspaper in Portland) is running radio ads touting their new re-design and that one of them features a Zoobomber as the voiceover.

I haven’t heard it myself, but here’s how one tipster remembers it:

“I heard it on 95.5 (I stopped listening for several months after the unfortunate incident, and I never listen to that stupid “playhouse” show), anyways…

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