West Seattle Summer Parkways and DRT recap

Seattle’s third and final Summer Parkways of the year happened last weekend, in West Seattle. The event also hosted a half marathon and the Seattle Disaster Relief Trials.

Much like our experience at Ballard Summer Parkways last month, I didn’t get to see everything so I’ll need to try to make time to explore the whole event next year. I spent most of my time in one spot–running the kid bike decorating station and working DRT registration and finish line.

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Whereas I had a bunch of kids for the kick-off bike parade in Ballard, there weren’t many around for this event. I heard from the event organizer that things happen a bit differently in West Seattle and people would show up later in the day. Had I not been busy with DRT the rest of the day, I think I could have declared a later parade time and gathered people at 2pm or so. Things to know for next year! Our small parade was my one chance for seeing some of the event, like the small bike polo court (cool!) and a bounce house. I ended the parade once I got back to my booth so I didn’t get a chance to see the bike rodeo put on by West Seattle Bike Connections on the other side of us, but that was also running all day long.

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At least DRT was huge! Here’s the photo album from DRT Seattle DRT 2016 (it might grow bigger, but at this point it’s just my 78 photos). DRT was a roaring success with many competitors and fun had by all…and the world saved from disaster, of course! The Seattle DRT website will post a full recap soon.

Alex Kostelnik, owner of 20/20 Cycle and Electric Lady Bicycles was the first to finish on his beautiful Bilenky cycletruck that has turned into some kind of monster since I saw him last. He thought we were joking when we said he had won the E-assist class because Haulin’ Colin had spent the majority of the race right behind him, heckling and relying on Alex’s navigation skills only to zoom ahead when he knew where he was going.

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We figured Colin must have had a mechanical failure of some sort and indeed he did! He had an exciting tire blow out that ground his bike to a halt, but he didn’t crash and the eggs (representing fragile medical supplies) in his teammate’s shirt pockets survived just fine. His rim was shot so they rolled in on a bare rear rim. He was able to pack Shamu, his semi-recumbent tandem extra-extra-longtail cargo bike, into the Bike Works BikeMobile at the end of the day.

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There was also a pretty epic trailer tire flat that rolled in duct taped to the max:

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And I found Morgan Scherer, DRT organizer and Familybike Executive Director fixing a trailer flat as I headed home. She surmised that the rough terrain part of the course was her undoing as she pulled four thorns out of her tire. Those other two flats were bigger blowouts and cannot be attributed to mere thorns, though.

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Here’s her rig in all its glory as we parted ways before I went over the West Seattle swing bridge and she took the Duwamish Trail. She also has a Surly Big Dummy. Hers is named Xena and has a Stokemonkey e-assist and is pulling her cargo trailer named Zombie Bernice with her awesome new e-bike trailing behind.

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I just carried pinwheels, pipe cleaners, and a tiny dog. Not nearly the same as the 300 potatoes I hauled home after last year’s DRT, but this year’s food was carried by van to a different food bank nor was I part of the organizing crew so I just did my small bit of day-of volunteering.

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And one more flat…
Even after a day filled with cargo bikes, I needed more cargo bikes so I met up with my friend Velotron who had been at the football game on his cargo bike so we could ride home together. He’s got an e-assist and I don’t so we took the new Westlake Cycletrack(flat) rather than Dexter (uphill both ways) so it’d be easier to travel at the same speed. I fared fine, but Velotron picked up a carpet tack and got flat a few blocks from home. That makes twice I’ve been with people who picked up tacks (also on my Critical Lass ride the day before) so I think I’ll avoid Westlake for the time being because surely my own luck has run out.

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But before the tack worked its way into his tube, I grabbed a great video of Velotron’s lights (that’s Pixie whimpering at the beginning because she doesn’t like not being first…not sure if it’s a rescue dog separation anxiety thing or a pack leader thing):

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