Ride recap: Third Annual Thanksgiving Family Group Ride

Our Third Annual Thanksgiving Family Group Ride was a huge success! We started with 27 participants and grew to 33 by the end after picking up two families along the way. One family went the other way around the lake, which worked well for finding us, but I’ll be clear to announce CLOCKWISE LOOP next year.
See all 122 photos here.

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I kept with last year’s rough timeline:

10:00 – Start gathering at Gas Works (near the play barn)
10:30 – Depart
11:00-12:00 – Playground at Waterway 5 by Daniel’s Broiler
12:30 – Starbucks warm-up stop
1:30 – Back to Gas Works

…except the playground stop was more like 11:30 to 12 and we got back to Gas Works Park close to 2pm.

Everyone was able to stay with the ride the whole time this year! I think it helped to have the timeline so those with cooking and nap obligations stayed away, though on all Kidical Mass rides–and especially this one–families are welcome to drop off early if need be.

As with all rides in which my five-year old rides his own bike, I had to stop the ride several times. First for a water sip and a bit farther along, as you can see in the picture below, to load him onto my bike because he was too tired to go on. At least it makes for a nice group picture and I feel like it sets an accurate example of how one must sometimes be flexible when biking with kids.

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I thought we had fun dealing with steep Hamlin and Yale Terrace and mused about naming the hill something fun for next year. Hellacious Hamlin? Tantrum Terrace? But it turned out not to be so popular with everyone so I’ll take a vote about changing the route for next year. I dislike riding the sidewalk of Eastlake, especially with a big group, but I think we’d need to stay up on Eastlake for three sidewalk blocks were we to avoid the hills.

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We added a new element to the ride this year–a stop at a Pronto Cycle Share station for the kids to climb on the docked bike share bikes.

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And shortly after we were at the real playground at Waterway 5. The sun shone on us for a brief minute there–I snapped a picture with shadows!

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Then three circles around the model boat test pond in Lake Union Park (photo taken while standing on my FlightDeck):

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And snacks, restroom break at Starbucks.

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As we approached Gas Works Park at the end of our loop I decided I shouldn’t make everyone cross Northlake Way to enter the park since most of us would be heading one way or the other along the Burke-Gilman Trail. So we pulled into the little area at the Wallingford Steps. It was a bit awkward given the last-minute change of stopping point, but I think I like this for future rides…with advance notice so we can all pull off the trail to take one last group shot and say our goodbyes.

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Here’s the map:

And recaps from 2013 and 2012.

Hope to see you out there next year!

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