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Great tweets from the 2013 World Naked Bike Ride (NSFW)

Great tweets from the 2013 World Naked Bike Ride (NSFW)

Something new this year: we’re using Storify, an embeddable social media aggregator, to round up some of our favorite social media chatter about Saturday’s naked ride — including a few from other WNBRS around the world.

Check below the fold for a selection of tweets, videos and photos from the event.

The best of World Naked Bike Ride 2013 (NSFW photos)

The best of World Naked Bike Ride 2013 (NSFW photos)

In the future, the 2013 World Naked Bike Ride will be remembered as the year things got sophisticated.

Thanks to a permit to gather in the South Park Blocks and a deal with the Portland Art Museum to allow entrance to their bike-design exhibit Cyclepedia for the unique fee of $1 per piece of clothing, this year’s WNBR started with a stiff dose of urban energy and culture.

Check out lots of photos by our photographer Alex Milan Tracy after the jump.

Things got underway outside the museum around 8 p.m.

We finally started to roll a bit before 11.

“Follow me to freedom”

It’s not clear yet just how many riders showed up, though due to the clear warm night, it was surely one of the biggest WNBRs ever. We’re looking forward to hearing about your own favorite moments over the next few days.

In the meantime, you can also take a roll down memory lane with our WNBR archives.

Maureen Young contributed to this post. Thanks again to Alex Milan Tracy and his camera for stepping in while Jonathan was getting on a plane back to Portland.

Slow start, soaring payoff: first take on WNBR 2013

Slow start, soaring payoff: first take on WNBR 2013

It’s safe to say Portland’s never seen a World Naked Bike Ride quite like this.

The ride started in the South Park Blocks, surrounded by Portland’s civic institutions, and it totally transformed the atmosphere before the ride, both for eager riders and curious onlookers. Unlike in past years, when the ride’s begun on the Central Eastside industrial district, the energy was arriving from all directions. Happy people in various states of undress swarmed through the trees of the park blocks and swamped the surrounding streets.

The fact that onlookers knew just where the ride began seemed to slow things down. The first couple of turns for riders became bottlenecks when mostly-well-meaning pedestrians left the curbs to offer high fives.

On the other hand, a different start point wouldn’t have offered neon pink towers for naked young riders to dance happily inside, to the cheers of the watching crowd. And once the crowd crossed the Burnside Bridge, it was smooth sailing all the way to the afterparties.

It’s not clear yet just how many riders showed up. “The count (no good numbers yet) is directly tied to the slow start,” ride co-organizer Carl Larson wrote. “There’s a reason Bridge Pedal doesn’t start all at once…”

Jonathan and I are processing photographer Alex Milan Tracy‘s shots of the night and we’ll have another post up soon.

Five things to know about tonight’s World Naked Bike Ride

Five things to know about tonight’s World Naked Bike Ride

(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

1) It’s not about sex. The WNBR is about loving your body, loving low-car or car-free life, demonstrating the power of bikes in mass motion, metaphorically conveying the vulnerability of people on bikes, experiencing the city in a new way and loving the friends and new friends you’ll see before, during and after. And although all of those things are almost certainly good for your sex life, you’ll be surprised how much fun nudity (or near-nudity) is without sex.

2) Nobody cares that your body is not perfect. Nobody’s body is perfect, so for one night, everybody’s body gets to be perfect.

3) Read the fine print. We did a post on Thursday with all the details. I really liked the Mercury’s brief Naked Biking 101 article, too — look for it in their PedalPalooza calendar.

4) It’s okay not to be into naked bike riding. WNBR is not everybody’s thing and you should not feel bad if it’s not your thing. But you definitely shouldn’t knock it until you’ve tried it.

5) This thing is going to be off the chain. The World Naked Bike Ride hasn’t seen this beautiful of weather in years. The crowd is going to be a sight to see.

Have fun, everybody. BikePortland’s coverage begins very early tomorrow morning.

Five things to know about tonight’s World Naked Bike Ride

Five things to know about tonight’s World Naked Bike Ride

(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

1) It’s not about sex. The WNBR is about loving your body, loving low-car or car-free life, demonstrating the power of bikes in mass motion, metaphorically conveying the vulnerability of people on bikes, experiencing the city in a new way and loving the friends and new friends you’ll see before, during and after. And although all of those things are almost certainly good for your sex life, you’ll be surprised how much fun nudity (or near-nudity) is without sex.

2) Nobody cares that your body is not perfect. Nobody’s body is perfect, so for one night, everybody’s body gets to be perfect.

3) Read the fine print. We did a post on Thursday with all the details. I really liked the Mercury’s brief Naked Biking 101 article, too — look for it in their PedalPalooza calendar.

4) It’s okay not to be into naked bike riding. WNBR is not everybody’s thing and you should not feel bad if it’s not your thing. But you definitely shouldn’t knock it until you’ve tried it.

5) This thing is going to be off the chain. The World Naked Bike Ride hasn’t seen this beautiful of weather in years. The crowd is going to be a sight to see.

Have fun, everybody. BikePortland’s coverage begins very early tomorrow morning.

NSFW (but safe for people): 5 questions for Portland’s brainy bike pornographer

NSFW (but safe for people): 5 questions for Portland’s brainy bike pornographer

Tour de Fat 2008-63.jpg

The inimitable Phil Sano.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

For some people, the connection between bikes and sexuality starts and ends with 5,000 nude bodies at this Saturday’s World Naked Bike Ride.

For seven years, the man who created Bike Smut has been proving that those people aren’t thinking nearly big enough.

Next Wednesday, Portland-based porn pro and self-described bikesexual revolutionary Phil Sano — often known by his nom de guerre, “the Rev. Phil” — launches the latest edition of his globetrotting revue, the Porny Express, at the Clinton Street Theater. Its press materials promise a “variety of representations of human sexuality, entirely created by amateur bike pornographers from all over the world.”

Then there’s Bike Smut’s recent DVD, Come Find Me, in which “a woman wakes up to an enticing Polaroid, inviting her on a bike powered scavenger hunt. After a lot of teasing, she gets her thrilling reward.”

“Both have virtuous cycles that result in better conditions to live in.”
— Phil Sano on sex and cycling

But the most surprising thing about Sano might be that he’s an exceptionally earnest, thoughtful guy with a deeply felt political agenda: he looks at boringly patriarchal sex concepts (and puts them on his cultural hit list) the same way some of his fellow bike-lovers look at SUVs. And he’s managed to build a career doing something about it.

In a few words, what’s the big idea of Bike Smut?

Bike Smut is fun, smart and aware. Goal is to gather mature audiences for candid sharing of creative, enticing ideas. Ideas like sex and cycling.

Both have virtuous cycles that result in better conditions to live in. More cyclists in the streets make the streets safer, and more honest communication about desires makes fucking safer.

2012 World Naked Bike Ride - Portland-45

Sano at last year’s Naked Ride.

How long have you been spreading the bike porn gospel, and where has the work taken you?

Each year we have a new theme and ask artists from around the word to submit their short movies. In the past couple years we have had hundreds of shows in 24 different countries from Ankara to Edinburgh to Oaxaca.

We are about to start our seventh year of programming, which will premiere at the Clinton St Theater in Portland as part of Pedalpalooza. Then a few days later, we will be having a screening on top of the world in Anchorage, Alaska (which is [at latitude] 61 degrees north, as opposed to our current northernmost screening, of Gothenburg, Sweden, at 57 degrees).

Finally, a massive personal challenge will be bike touring across North America this autumn. Leaving Oregon in August, we hope to be in Montreal before it gets too cold.

Have you noticed changes to people’s reaction to the shows over the years?

I remember a few people complaining that the show didn’t have enough porn. The past couple years we have heard people complain there was not enough bike!

How do you see the smut business changing in general?

The business of pornography has changed a lot. Whereas before there were only a handful of distribution channels and everyone was trying to build up, now the tide is over the wall and everyone is trying to stay light and mobile. If the levees break, maybe we will finally behold our sexual revolution.

It is not just the increasing number of people in pornography, it is also the intentions of those who are producing it. We are seeing ethical erotica being produced by feminist pornographers like Tristan Taramino, which may only be slightly less radical than Annie Sprinkle‘s ecosexual movement. In both cases, there is more awareness and a desire to make something that resonates with audience. Most of porn is so ephemeral. It feels great to create something with more value.

What’s the highlight for you of next week’s show?

Sano at a Sunday Parkways event.

We have been asking for more honest representations of male sexuality. People sometimes say porn is degrading to women, but really, most porn is just degrading to people. But it doesn’t have to be that way. We are excited to show real, honest representations of sexuality by people who are excited to share their vision.

Sex is usually depicted as this very serious, very rigid, very delineated activity. Cycling is also looked upon in a similar way. The reality is there are a variety of feelings and expressions and we shouldn’t let an unseen other (e.g., patriarchy) put limitations on how we get around.

I think of limitations like screws in a derailleur. They keep you running smooth but you have to play with them every once in a while to keep them dialed in. And sometimes they need serious readjustment.

Qs & As edited for brevity.

NOTE: Hi everyone. We had a mix-up about the lead photo used in this story. I apologize for the image. I had sent (or thought I sent) Michael an email about the story with a different image but for some reason he never saw the email. I’m still in Europe and communication has been tricky. – Jonathan

Kickoff parade riders share hidden gems of Pedalpalooza

Kickoff parade riders share hidden gems of Pedalpalooza

From left: Hillary Jenkins, Acorn, Amanda Hugnkiss and The Red Wizard prepare for Thursday’s
Pedalpalooza kickoff ride and discuss the best rides of the month to come.

Once a year in a city park, Dropouts meet mountain climbers and cargo haulers meet tall bikers. For Portland bike lovers, the Pedalpalooza Kickoff Parade is the gathering of the tribes.

It’s also the first time most people start thinking about which rides they’re going to check out over the next three weeks. As the energy built in Holladay Park before Thursday’s kickoff ride, I asked some of the throng of riders present to share a secret: which Pedalpalooza ride were they looking forward to that not enough other people know about yet?

Here’s what I heard.

James Fischer (right): the Power-Pop Ride. “It’s not Top 40 music — it’s like 60s garage, shoegaze, Belle and Sebastian-y stuff.”

Luna and Ashley: The Dropout Prom, featuring fancy clothes and a late-night riverside party with photographers and music.

T.J. Tryke: the Heavy Hill Climb. “It’s the only ride that’s a challenge.”

Esther Harlow: Puppypalooza. “The dog’s name is Norm, who’s leading the ride.” Aaron Kaffen: The TMBG Ride.

Greg O’Hearne: The Columbia Gorge Ride.

Andy Schmidt: The Teddy Bear Tag-Along 4 Toddlers on Tabor, featuring clowns on tallbikes and balloons. “I have kids.”

Diego Huber: “The Best Summer ride [from 2012] is pretty good. Last year I woke up under a tree with a smile still on my face. I imagine it must have been a good time.”

Allison Quick and Justin Brauner: The Knott Street Sprints.

Andrew Haddock: The Hott Socks Ride. “Last year it went to a sock store, and there were two different sock manufacturers and sock games and prizes. It was amazing.”

Shawna Cunningham: Cunningham said she’d been permanently sold on Pedalpalooza after seeing The Ginger Ride in action, including the creative ways people attempt to go redhead for a day. “Last year there was somebody with a big crown of orange balloons.”

Alex Kunz: The Portlandia Ride. “Mocking them mocking us — it’ll be interesting.”

Alex Agnes: The World Naked Bike Ride. “People who are from Portland know about it, but people who are from the suburbs don’t,” Agnes said, even committed bicyclists. “I’m like, what? How do you not know about that?”

Brian Scrivner: the Urban Farm Tour. “I had the most fun at the farm- and animal-related rides last year.”

Dingo: Twitch’s Birthday, which starts in the Smith and Bybee Lakes restroom. “Twitch put his birthday on the calendar and he said, ‘What’s the most remote ridiculous place it can start? How about a bathroom?’ Not only was he having a conversation with himself but he was agreeing with himself.”

Josh Force, kneeling: The Morrissey vs. Bowie vs. Prince Ride. “Everybody in the city should be on that one.” Robert Getch, in sunglasses: the Never Nude Ride. Becca Priddy, right: the Sexy Hippie Zombie Nightlight Ride.

Viola, right: Run-D.M.C. vs. The Beastie Boys. “I’m all about the old-school funk. I’m teaching all day tomorrow, but how can I not?”

Daniel Ronan: The UGB Ride. “I went on it last year and it was quite the urban planning hoot.”

Max Hinz: “I’m not interested in much beyond Zoobomb.”

Patrick McNearney and Grant Breitmeier: Darcelle’s Parade (from 2012). “I hope she does it this year,” said McNearney, left. “It’s worth its weight in gay gold.”

Lane Jensen: the kickoff ride itself. “This is my first one ever. I just got the bike last night.” Jensen, who blogs about TriMet at PortlandTransitLane.wordpress.com, said he’d already biked about seven miles Thursday and discovered that bike-friendly parts of Portland are in fact a joy to ride through.

Meghan Sinnott: “Whatever Alleycat the new girl, Laura, is leading. The first month in town or something, she already had an Alleycat ride and it was killer.”

Jon Takao, left: The Dead Baby Bikes Swinger Ride. “I’ve ridden Dead Baby in Seattle. One [custom bike] I remember is raked out four-foot forks with a chain, and whenever the chain went over any sort of bump it would slack and then it would tension back again.”

Will Vanlue: “The custom cargo bike ride, “Lab to Lab,” in honor of Tom LaBonty. And it’s led by, like, a 13-year-old.” Leah Vanlue: the Hott Socks Ride.

Daniel Silverman: the Deutsche Radfahrt. “One of my friends is doing a tour of Portland, in German, on Saturday morning. Last year it ended with fresh pretzels and beer. And there’s lots of history of Germans in Portland.”

The 2013 World Naked Bike Ride is ready and waiting for you (full details)

The 2013 World Naked Bike Ride is ready and waiting for you (full details)

The 2011 naked ride packs Portland’s inner east side. (Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

At least five thousand people are expected to hit the streets on bikes Saturday night in Oregon’s biggest pay-what-you-wish bike ride of the year.

And maybe you’ve heard: Most of us will be mostly naked.

Naked biking and Pedalpalooza have gone together since 2002, when a group of visiting Canadians spliced the bare-as-you-dare tradition into Portland’s DNA. It’s since evolved into the World Naked Bike Ride, one of many happening around the world on Saturday.

This year’s WNBR (which is, for the record, 100 percent legal) will begin on the South Park Blocks in downtown Portland. No registration is required. The pre-ride is being hosted by the Portland Art Museum, which is offering ride participants a truly memorable deal: admission to their bike-design exhibit Cyclepedia for only $1 per article of clothing.

“The barer you are, the cheaper it is,” says ride organizer Meghan Sinnott.

As of Thursday morning, the weather forecast for Saturday night is 68 degrees with zero chance of rain.

The art museum opens at 8 p.m., and the ride starts at 10 p.m. In the meantime, museum security will be present to ensure that only ride participants (and not, for example, uninvited gawkers) will be allowed in the museum and its courtyard.

Free body painting and live music will start
the ride, as in past years.

Sinnott said the art museum’s space will give riders “more room than ever before” to prepare for the ride. Some preparation will be necessary – unlike in past years, the ride won’t begin and end at the same location, so riders should bring necessary items on their bikes with them. (Local bike-freight firm B-Line is volunteering its pedal trucks to haul clothing free for up to 1,000 riders – look for them in the Park Blocks until 9:45 p.m.)

The ride’s destination this year is a secret.

WNBR, which is run entirely by volunteers (and is still recruiting for the big night), costs about $4,000 to put on due to city permits, portable toilets, dumpsters and other incidentals, will be accepting donations on site, so if you’re excited to be taking part, bring a few bucks to get a custom-designed 2013 sticker. (On any other day, Cyclopedia admission alone would cost $15.)

WNBR sponsor Joe Bike, a local bike shop and bike-apparel seller, is providing free mechanical assistance before the start of the ride and along the ride course, via cargo bike, as in years past. Their mechanics will also bring a supply of free emergency clothes in case people find they’re less covered than they want to be during the ride.

Afterward, everyone’s invited to one of five official afterparties:

  • Velocult (a ride sponsor), 1969 NE 42nd: windows will be covered for partiers to feel safe
  • Crush, 1400 SE Morrison: happy hour prices and prizes
  • Spints, 401 NE 28th: nudity allowed in outdoor patio
  • The Refuge, 116 SE Yamhill: music and dancing
  • Or if you prefer remaining outdoors, you can meet up with people at the end of the ride and follow the official after-party leader to an undisclosed outdoor area.

The WNBR describes itself as a “peaceful protest,” and over the years that’s meant different things to different participants.

Veteran WNBR organizer Meghan Sinnott.

“I think that it means something different for everybody – there’s a space for everybody,” said Sinnott, who’s helped organize most of Portland’s WNBRs. “The way I see it is, every single person is joining the ride for a different reason, and that makes it more powerful. Because each person has to decide why they want to be naked and what it means to them.”

What are you waiting for? It’s time to invite your friends.

Ready to roll: Pedalpalooza kicks off today

Ready to roll: Pedalpalooza kicks off today

From the 2009 Pedalpalooza kickoff parade. (Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

The best bike festival in the world starts at 6 p.m. this evening just south of the Lloyd Center mall, and you’re going to miss most of it.

That’s because, with 257 different bike rides and events in the next 23 days, it’s geospacially impossible to keep up with Pedalpalooza. The only solution is (as any Pedalpalooza veteran will tell you) to trust your gut, take some chances, savor the moments, meet some new friends and have a great time doing whatever you feel like.

There’s a lot to enjoy this year, and we’ll be covering a selection of the rides here on BikePortland as usual. Here’s a quick look at some that caught my eye, starting with the only one I never miss myself:

The annual kickoff parade.

The Kickoff Parade: It all begins at 6 p.m. in Holladay Park with a freeform, wear-whatever celebration of the beginning of summer in Portland. Expect some costumes, some work clothes, lots of chance meetings and approximately half a mile of rolling smiles. Show up early for one of the 200 limited-edition felt Pedalpalooza pennants to attach to your bike. Afterward at 8:30, there’s an afterparty at Branx / The Row (Southeast 2nd Avenue and Oak) with food carts, live music and $1 Rainier beer.

Some other highlights from the next three weeks:

Chutes and Ladders Ride: “We recreate the classic game of Chutes & Ladders life-size on the east-side grid. It’s kind of a race-game, where you’ll need some luck and some speed.”

Fascist Architecture of Portland: Creepily, Portland is home to “an unheralded and unique collection of ‘Mussolini Modern’ buildings.” A local architect is leading a tour of them.

Food Foraging: “We recommend bringing collection bags and scissors and/or a knife.”

Tall Girl Ride: Height minimum: 5’11”.

Hot for Teacher ride: “Knock one back and ride off another year of paper grading, lesson planning, and general kid wrangling.”

Willamette Week Troll Ride: The culture section of Portland’s grouchiest weekly newspaper will guide a tour of “the scenes of some of our most controversial stories of the past year.”

The No Hands Olympics: A competition for the well-balanced, with beer, prizes, music and spectators.

Rush Hour Ride: “We’re going to ride the arterial highways of Portland, like Sandy and MLK. We’ll see where freeways have been proposed, where they’ve been built, and go where no bicycles have gone before!”

Bike Odyssey: Each year, the Working Theater Collective puts on a deliciously campy three-nights-only performance of a play performed in various locations around town, to which the characters lead the audience by bike. This year, they visit “a land of gods, monsters, and heroically dexterous bike mechanics.”

That’s not even to mention the rides built around 80s pop, 70s pop culture, Idaho-style stop laws, Anglophiles, redheads, webcomics, pinball, families with kids, urban growth boundaries, fake moustaches, ice cream, boxed wine, pizza, tacos and champagne.

Pop one open, Portland. We’re going to have a great month.

Ready to roll: Pedalpalooza kicks off today

Ready to roll: Pedalpalooza kicks off today

From the 2009 Pedalpalooza kickoff parade. (Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland)

The best bike festival in the world starts at 6 p.m. this evening just south of the Lloyd Center mall, and you’re going to miss most of it.

That’s because, with 257 different bike rides and events in the next 23 days, it’s geospacially impossible to keep up with Pedalpalooza. The only solution is (as any Pedalpalooza veteran will tell you) to trust your gut, take some chances, savor the moments, meet some new friends and have a great time doing whatever you feel like.

There’s a lot to enjoy this year, and we’ll be covering a selection of the rides here on BikePortland as usual. Here’s a quick look at some that caught my eye, starting with the only one I never miss myself:

The annual kickoff parade.

The Kickoff Parade: It all begins at 6 p.m. in Holladay Park with a freeform, wear-whatever celebration of the beginning of summer in Portland. Expect some costumes, some work clothes, lots of chance meetings and approximately half a mile of rolling smiles. Show up early for one of the 200 limited-edition felt Pedalpalooza pennants to attach to your bike. Afterward at 8:30, there’s an afterparty at Branx / The Row (Southeast 2nd Avenue and Oak) with food carts, live music and $1 Rainier beer.

Some other highlights from the next three weeks:

Chutes and Ladders Ride: “We recreate the classic game of Chutes & Ladders life-size on the east-side grid. It’s kind of a race-game, where you’ll need some luck and some speed.”

Fascist Architecture of Portland: Creepily, Portland is home to “an unheralded and unique collection of ‘Mussolini Modern’ buildings.” A local architect is leading a tour of them.

Food Foraging: “We recommend bringing collection bags and scissors and/or a knife.”

Tall Girl Ride: Height minimum: 5’11”. There’s one for tall boys too, but “6’+ encouraged” seems a little wishy-washy if you ask me.

Hot for Teacher ride: “Knock one back and ride off another year of paper grading, lesson planning, and general kid wrangling.”

Willamette Week Troll Ride: The culture section of Portland’s grouchiest weekly newspaper will guide a tour of “the scenes of some of our most controversial stories of the past year.”

The No Hands Olympics: A competition for the well-balanced, with beer, prizes, music and spectators.

Rush Hour Ride: “We’re going to ride the arterial highways of Portland, like Sandy and MLK. We’ll see where freeways have been proposed, where they’ve been built, and go where no bicycles have gone before!”

Bike Odyssey: Each year, the Working Theater Collective puts on a deliciously campy three-nights-only performance of a play performed in various locations around town, to which the characters lead the audience by bike. This year, they visit “a land of gods, monsters, and heroically dexterous bike mechanics.”

That’s not even to mention the rides built around 80s pop, 70s pop culture, Idaho-style stop laws, Anglophiles, redheads, webcomics, pinball, families with kids, urban growth boundaries, fake moustaches, ice cream, boxed wine, pizza, tacos and champagne.

Pop one open, Portland. We’re going to have a great month.