Category Archives: bike brunches

Yeast Nashville Bike Brunch!

The awesome, bike-loving owner of Yeast Nashville put together a bike brunch last month, with the help of the awesome Amanda H. A group of nearly 20 cyclists loaded up on delicious kolaches and cinnamon rolls at Yeast, and then set off on a 7-mile ride organized by Amanda.

 

 

 

 

 

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Me in Shelby Park

The next Bike Brunch from Yeast Nashville is on May 18—find more details here.

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Nashville spring biking

 

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You guys, it is spring in Nashville–finally. I’ve been going on rides and walks and making spring-y cupcakes.

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And sunday, April 13, we’re having a bike brunch! Meet at Yeast Nashville at 11:15 for food–then at around noon, we’ll head out for a ride through Shelby Bottoms. More details here.

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Hope to see you there!

Join us in Nashville for a Tweed Ride

It’s been way too long since our last Nashville Tweed Ride. Time for a rematch! Will I wear the exact same outfit as I did three years ago? Will we have equally unseasonable warm weather? Will the 15 people who RSVP’d “yes” on the Nashville Slow Ride page actually show up? I can hardly wait to find out.

Tweed Ride invite

Please join us! Route details can be found on the meetup page above or on the Facebook event page.

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Nashville bicycle brunch: Fools in the rain edition

On August 11, we had something of a last-minute bicycle picnic brunch in Centennial Park. It was hot and HUMID…really gross and humid. And it got even wetter before the day was over. But a good time was still had by all. I think!

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Our delicious spread included iced coffee, champagne, watermelon, yummy breads and boiled eggs. Oh, and kolaches from Yeast Nashville!

New friends Anna and Dan arrived on their sweet vintage Gitane tandem.
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We ate and chatted amid tourists renting B-cycles and locals doing what looked like Tae Bo (she politely asked if we minded her occasional cursing. We pointed out that we were drinking alcohol in a park during prime church hours…so, not really.).

Sadly, we missed Andy and Amanda, who had ridden all the way from East Nashville (with more kolaches!) but had gotten there early and missed where we were set up in the park. At least they had extra pastries to console them. Next time I plan to choose a geographical feature in the park to mark our spot!

Toward the end of the brunch, we started feeling raindrops. We huddled under a tree for a while, thinking it would pass. It…didn’t. Once we were completely soaked, we decided it was time to take refuge under the Parthenon. Anna and Dan kindly donated their blanket to keep my new Brooks dry.

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Rainy group photo, with Le Peug standing in for me.

Our next brunch will be on September 29, at the Stone Fox. Fingers crossed we won’t get rained on. Email me for more details if you’re interested in joining!

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News from Nashville

Just a quick post to let you know about a couple of of rides taking place in Nashville this weekend.

  • Saturday, August 10, 3pm: a Critical Mass ride to show support for cyclist Molly Meinbresse, who was severely injured in a hit-and-run incident on the Korean Veterans Bridge last Saturday. The ride will begin at the Nashville Courthouse, at Second and Union, and end at Five Points in East Nashville. More details here. Sadly, this is the second instance in just over a year of a cyclist who has been struck from behind by a driver who subsequently fled the scene (and yes, it’s the driver who flees the scene, NOT the vehicle!). Raising awareness of cyclists on the road is critical, and I hope that you’ll join me on this ride.
  • Sunday, August 11, 11 am: Nashville Bike Brunch in Centennial Park. Bring a breakfast-y item to share, and I’ll bring the coffee. We’ll be between the Parthenon and West End Ave. Ride afterward for those who are interested, as long as heat stroke is not a threat. :)

 

One Less Minivan!

A couple of Sundays ago, my Women-Who-Bike and Brunch group met up for a lovely picnic at the Logan Square Farmer’s Market.  Summer picnics are the best – I love sampling all the delicious food everyone brings.

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My friend Ash, who writes about some of her bike adventures at One Less Minivan, was there with her two daughters and badass bike set up.  She has a Joe Bike bakfiets fitted with a baby carseat in the front and a child’s seat in the back.

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Baby is strapped in and ready to go!

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A happy flower smiles at following drivers.

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P is serious about her helmet.  :-)

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Getting ready…

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And they’re off!

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You can read the details about Ash’s set-up at her cheekily titled, “And it’s not even a death trap.”

Thanks to all the cool women who came out!  See you in August.  :-)

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National Bike Month rolls on in Nashville

Earlier this week, Dottie mentioned all the awesome events going on in Chicago for National Bike Month. We’ve got lots going on here in Nashville, too! Last Sunday, I led a Bike Brunch + MetroCenter Ride, which miraculously was rain-free. Also a miracle: That another cyclist came by, the first we’d seen all day, just in time to take this photo.

MetroCenter Ride crew

MetroCenter Ride crew

Next week is the biggest week yet: Wednesday is the Ride of Silence, Friday is Bike to Work Day, and Saturday is the Tour de Nash! We just found out that Mike Wolfe from “American Pickers” will be leading the Family Ride. I’m hoping he’ll be on some sort of awesome vintage machine…

Check out the calendar for more details on those and other events.
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What’s happening in your city for bike month?

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St. Patrick’s Day ride in Nashville

Oh my gosh. What happened to April? I can’t really blame my vacation, since I was behind on my blogging before I even left: I didn’t post these pictures from our last Nashville group ride, which took place on St. Patrick’s Day. It was dreary and overcast (story of the last three months, it feels like) but we didn’t get *too* rained on. Even though it’s late, I have to share them in honor of the awesome friends who came out (and wore green!).

For those in Nashville, our next ride will be May 5. Find out more here!

Kermit Allegra was decked out for the holiday.

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So was Jessica’s Linus, although I did a horrible job of taking a photo of it.

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We started at Taproom, where I had a corned beef sandwich and a black and tan.

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Then we set off for downtown and our final destination of Fleet Street Pub (there being no satisfactory Irish pubs in downtown, alas).
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Everyone was wearing green.

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The group at Fleet Street.

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Ticker tape bills!

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Afterwards, Whitney and I went to our last Italian lesson and then took the bus home just for kicks.

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How was your St. Patrick’s Day? Your Easter? (How could I have missed two holidays?!?)

Our next outing will be on May 5, and is a Farmer’s Market Brunch + MetroCenter ride. Details here—come and join us!

Re-discovering Nashville

Howdy!  I recently got an iPhone and I’m intrigued by all the blogging/twitter/picture possibilities.  Therefore, those of you who follow us on Twitter may have seen that Trisha and I were hanging together in Nashville this weekend.  Working on some fun blog-related stuff.  :-)

On Saturday, we biked to the park and picnicked for a few hours with a bottle of wine and some good cheese.  I rode the Flik folding bike and Trisha rode her beloved Kate Spade Abici.

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Other than blog work and bicycling, we’ve basically been eating our way through Nashville, with stops at Barista Parlor, Rolf and Daughters, Hattie B’s Chicken (for a Nashville bike brunch and meet-up with my friend Erin and her baby Finn), and The Pharmacy.  Love Southern Food!

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We also absorbed some culture at the Frist Art Museum.

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Finally, a bit of shopping, including some long-desired, ultra-local Imogen + Willie jeans for Trisha and Wolford tights for me (I’ll review them here, as I’m hopeful they are the perfect winter tights).

Re-discovering Nashville with every visit (after living here six years ago) is always a treat.  The city is on a huge upswing, including improving public transportation and bicycling facilities.  Every time I visit, there is more to see and do!

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Nashville Bike Brunch + B-Cycle Test

Well, Nashville’s bike share finally launched on Thursday. I didn’t make it to the launch (whose idea is it to have these things in the middle of the day downtown??) but I feel like being the very first person to sign up for a year’s membership gives me some street cred anyway.

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Signing up for B-Cycle at the 12South Winter Warmer

On Sunday, we had a bike lunch at the very bike-friendly Kay Bob’s Grill and Ale near Vanderbilt (they volunteered to host AND they have a brand new bike rack!). Jonathan and Stephanie get points for biking all the way from East Nashville…our next brunch has got to be a little further their way. As we ate, we noted a couple of B-Cycle riders cruising down 21st—an encouraging sign for the program. Of course, the mild weather didn’t hurt: It was easily 60 degrees.

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Lauren and me

Lauren and me

Whitney, Stephanie & Jonathan

Whitney, Stephanie & Jonathan

$2 beers and delicious flatbreads were had. Then we strolled down to the closest kiosk to check this whole bike-share thing out.

Nashville or Paris?

Nashville or Paris?

The kiosks were the simplest ones I’ve used yet. Plus, if you’re a member, you can bypass them completely and just hold your pass up to the release point and checking the bike out that way.

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And unlike in London, I didn’t snag my tights/bruise myself trying to wrestle the damn bike out of the…holster, for lack of a better word.

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As I said before, these are fairly heavy, sturdy, 3-speed bikes. But the seats were easy to adjust and the same bike fit all of us with ease.

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They sent me a little text once I had successfully returned the bike, and I also got an email receipt detailing my activity—a nice touch.

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While we were at the kiosk, a handful of people stopped to check out the bikes and ask questions about how they worked—proof that a bike share has the power to make people think about cycling as transportation. Though I wouldn’t say that 21st Ave. is my favorite street to bike on (nor is Wedgewood, for that matter, though once it turns into Blakemore it’s OK), this station is one that will really up the program’s visibility. I can see myself using it on days I don’t bike to work if I have to run a lunch errand.

If you’re in Nashville, have you used the bike share? You can join here or find more details here.

 

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Cheers to Community

Thanks so much to everyone for your support this week!  Every comment and email means a great deal to me.

I have not told anyone outside of my bicycling circle about the hit and run.  I want to avoid hearing – from now until the end of time – “I can’t believe you’re still riding your bike” and “OMG be careful!!!”  This would come from a place of kindness and concern, but I just don’t want to hear it.  So I am very grateful for all of you and for my women-who-bike group: people who really get it.

Here are some photos from Decembers Women-Who-Bike Brunch a couple of weeks ago.  Strong, fabulous women who are leading the charge and having fun doing it.

If you are in Chicago and would like to join our Women-Who-Bike brunches, please email me at LGRAB@letsgorideabike.com.  If you’re not in Chicago, I encourage you to join – or start! – a local social bike group.  The benefits of community cannot be understated.

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A Day in the Urban Outdoors

This time of year, lots of people spend their weekends hiking or taking drives to look at autumn colors. Which is all well and good, but you don’t have to leave the city to spend an active day out of doors.

On Sunday, we had a bicycle brunch at West End Café.  It was a beautiful day with temperatures in the high 50s.

Lauren, Stephanie, Jonathan, Whitney, Sten & Jessica

Newlyweds! Jess & Sten got married on November 3.

 

Lauren knitted her sweater.

I pulled the Bat out for the day.

Afterwards, most of us went downtown to check out the Mayor’s 5K. Stephanie and Jonathan left before the start, but Whitney had registered and Lauren and I decided to walk along with her.

Walking a 5K in boots while carrying a purse? Why not?

We felt a tad out of place, not being clad in sweats, tennis shoes or t-shirts, but walking such a short distance in city clothes is really no big deal. Besides, who could miss out on the chance to enjoy city streets closed off to car traffic? Not this trio.

After the 5K, we ate some free snacks and checked out the Bcycle terminal…bikes TK next month.

Finally, pricing is revealed!

Then we went to get our bikes for the ride home, stopping to admire the picture they made in front of the red trees and new courthouse shining in the late afternoon light. Who says you can’t enjoy fall color in the city?

Whitney and I took the long way home to check out the new 28th Ave Connector, which has a protected bike lane. I was too busy enjoying the ride/huffing on the uphills to take a picture of my own, not that you get much of a chance for photos on a ride that’s only just over a quarter of a mile, but here’s one from WSMV (click for more details on the connector, if you’re curious).

Image courtesy of WSMV, obviously!

When I got home after my 5-hour outdoor day, I headed directly to the couch. Where I’m fairly certain someone else had been for the entire day.

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September Women-Who-Bike Brunch

In September, the women-who-bike brunch group picnicked for the final time this year.  Lucky for us, the weather was perfect.

Here are some of the cool women-who-bike and their trusty steeds.

After the picnic, a few of us walked over to the nature museum and stopped by the butterfly sanctuary…

…on our way to check out the final day of the “Bikes! Green Revolution” exhibit, which I originally blogged about last spring.

I dig the old school cycle chic posters.

The next brunch will be this Sunday with special guest Trisha!  :-)  Email LGRAB@letsgorideabike.com if you’re interested in joining us.

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August’s Women-Who-Bike Brunch (with kids!)

For our August brunch, the Chicago Women-Who-Bike gathered in Lincoln Park south of the zoo for a scenic picnic.

There were lots of cool ladies with cool bikes.

This month, kids were specifically invited – and enjoyed the nearby petting zoo after brunch.  Happily for them, there was plenty of grass to run around on and trees to climb.

Their moms were rocking some VERY cool multi-passenger bikes.  This Bike Friday Two’sDay Tandem is an awesome little machine.  You can read more about it on One Less Minivan.

Then there was this chic black Madsen with a heavy duty front rack.

This WorkCycles Bakfeits regularly carries three boys.  Read more about it on Chicargo Bike.

Super fun Nutcase helmets!

Taking off…

Betty Foy looked on with respect and admiration.  These women and their bikes are way badass.

If you are a woman in Chicago interested in joining the group, you are very welcome!  Email me at LGRAB@letsgorideabike.com for details.  The next brunch will be Sunday, September 9, at the Nature Museum to check out the final day of the Bikes! The Revolution exhibit.

{P.S.  There’s a great discussion going on in the comments sections of yesterday’s Bicycle Booty post – check it out and share your thoughts!}

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July’s Women-Who-Bike Brunch

On July 1, the Chicago women-who-bike met for our monthly brunch.  A small group made it downtown for the 90+ degree day.  We picnicked in Grant Park, near the famous Buckingham Fountain.

Here is Jessica and her colorful Specialized Globe.  The blue wheels came with it.

Chika and her blue Linus Dutchie 3-speed.  I was with Chika when she bought the Linus from J.C. Lind Bikes – more on that selection process soon!

Michelle and her black Linus Dutchie 8-speed.  Michelle writes the informative and influential blog, Bike Walk Lincoln Park and I was so happy finally to meet her in real life.

Megan and her Gary Fisher Simple City (no longer made).  I love how her creamy linen and seersucker outfit matched her creamy bike.

Sara and her blue Pashley Poppy from Boulevard Bikes.  She loves this bike, since upgrading from a Jamis Commuter.

Me and my beloved Rivendell Betty Foy.

With my long dress pinned up for biking.

After a couple of hours, our sunny morning became overcast and thunder rumbled in the distance.

I was headed to a nearby theatre to see the Paris Opera Ballet perform again – I made it inside just in time to escape the storm.  When I emerged hours later, the weather was perfectly calm for my bike ride home.

Any women in Chicago who are interested in joining the brunch should email me at LGRAB@letsgorideabike.com.  We always meet the first Sunday of the month.

June’s women-who-bike picnic brunch

The first Sunday of June was an absolutely gorgeous Chicago day.  The women-who-bike met for a picnic by the lake.  Much fun was had!  Check out all the awesome women and their bikes!

Sara with her new Pashley Poppy and amazing red pants.

Chika – her first time biking in a dress!

Jen and her badass bakfiets.

Amy is serious business.  :)  Preparing for her first RAGBRAI this year!

Seri rocking the all black ensemble and preparing for her fourth (!) RAGBRAI.

Megan’s cool.  Coordinating her bungie straps to her sandals?  Yup, that’s how she rolls.  :)

Shelley on her way to tend her organic pop-up garden.  (Way more advanced than mine!)

Stefanie shows how to do summer blues!

Krystle looking Parisian chic!  (Fun fact: we first met when she recognized me outside the grocery store.)

PINK!  Christina shows how to do high-vis.  :)

Araidia and her adorable gingham skirt with clever leggings.

Me and Coco.  Read more about biking in this long dress.

Our beautiful patch of Chicago, in the shade of a majestic old tree.

Prosecco!

Berries!

Muffins!

A fabulous morning.

If you’re a woman in Chicago, join the next brunch – a picnic in Grant Park downtown!  Sunday, July 1, 10:30 a.m.  Email LGRAB@letsgorideabike.com for the details.

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October’s Brunch and the Urban Adventure League

Today I developed a long-forgotten roll of B&W film and discovered the pictures from October’s women-who-bike brunch.  If anyone was wondering why I never blogged about October’s brunch, that’s why.

Enjoy.  :)

At this brunch we had special guests from Portland: April and Shawn from the Urban Adventure League.  They were at the end of a long bike tour that took them from Portland through Vancouver, Montana, Minnesota and finally Chicago.  Shawn is also the writer of the comic Ten Foot Rule, among other publications.

The women-who-bike group makes special exceptions for men who are visiting from out of town, especially if they biked.  :)

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May’s Women-Who-Bike Brunch

Last Sunday, the Chicago Women-who-bike gathered for our monthly brunch at Revolution Brewing in Logan Square.  This meant we got to enjoy their signature beermosa.  :)

Overall, our group size was about 30 people, all at one long table.  Special thanks to our excellent waitress, Jessica, for taking such good care of us.

Molly and her husband Piet joined us while visiting Chicago from Ann Arbor, Michigan.  You may remember both of them from their Summer Games participation and especially Molly from her 2010 Roll Models profile. 

After brunch, we spent time outside – as always – talking about bikes.  I like how April strapped her Kate Spade bag to her front rack.

Alison took Jen’s bakfiets for a spin.  Love the look on her face.  :)

But she soon went back to her own cute orange ride.

The day was a little rainy and I saw lots of different rain coats.  I particularly like this teal one!

Jenny showed how casually stylish a skirt with sneakers can look.

And Megan wore cool red sneakers!

Saya and Laurie, her friend visiting from Boston, struck a pose for me.  :)

This is only a small sampling of the great group of women who came out.

If you’re a woman and in Chicago and you bike (or simply want to learn more about biking!), email me at LGRAB@letsgorideabike.com to be added to the list.  Our next brunch will be Sunday, June 3rd – a picnic on the lakefront.

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April’s Women-who-bike Brunch

On Sunday, the Chicago Women-Who-Bike gathered for our April brunch.  Although we had to cancel a planned picnic at the last minute due to the weather (never trust a Chicago forecast), a great group of both regulars and first-timers gathered at the back-up location.

Beth (on the left below), a first-timer, is preparing for a charity century ride in June and learning how to use clipless pedals.  My hat is off to her!  Those are two bikey things that I have never tried before.  I love how her Fuji manages to be both utilitarian and attractive while primarily being sporty.  You can follow her adventures at YAY BETH!! (tagline: “cheer me on, damn you.” ha!).

Jenny (on the right below) is a regular and she rides the most lovely Globe I’ve seen.  The Carolina blue frame and cream tires are so gorgeous, right?  Especially with her brown leather boots.  I’m impressed by how far the Globe has come as a utilitarian and classy bike in the past few years.

Araidia and her lovely vintage Raleigh are regulars.  I swooned over her shellacked cork grips for a bit (she shellacked them herself and they look so much nicer than my pre-shellacked ones) and we noticed that our 3-speed Sturmey Archer shifters are almost identical, even though hers is over 30 years older than mine.  Ariadia designs and creates beautiful Love Letter Slips and we made plans to go thrifting together soon!

Chika (on the left below) joined the group for the first time.  I was amazed to learn that we both grew up in North Carolina, went to the same college (the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill), and graduated the same year, 2003!  Meeting a fellow Tarheel in Chicago is so rare, let alone one from my class.  Very cool!

Lucy (on the right) lives near the restaurant, so she walked and I got a photo of her with her cool shoes, instead of her bike.  :) Cute skirt plus leggings plus sneakers = perfect early spring outfit.

Ann was another first-timer.  She rides a WorkCycles Fr8 with two child seats, one on the front and one on the back.  This badass setup is rare in Chicago and I realized that I spotted her one morning in Lincoln Park last year, biking her children to school.  I blogged about the sighting at the time, saying this:

I passed a woman going the other direction who was riding a Dutch bike with flowing hair, carrying a baby on the front and a toddler on the back.  It was so beautiful, I could have wept.  She must be Dutch or something, although I would love to be wrong.  Anyone know a regular Chicago mom who throws down like that?  I was tempted to turn around and catch up with her to snap a picture, but figured that would be weird.

I love that I ended up meeting her all this time later at my brunch, and I’m happy to learn that she is American!

We also had a very special guest visiting from NYC, Kim of Velojoy, a “growing online resource for city cyclists and those who may be considering riding in the bike lanes for the first time,” written by an all-female team.  Connecting with people from around the country and world through the love of bicycling is the best.  I’m so glad Kim contacted me and and now I’m excited to visit New York again soon.

I pulled out Coco for the morning.  I’ll be riding her a lot this spring, I’m sure.  Such a sweet and happy bike.  :)

Unfortunately, I did not get a picture of everyone who was there (Seri, I’m looking at you!).

Of course, the women-who-bike brunch is also about food.  My favorite dish at Ann Sather, a Swedish diner, is the Swedish pancakes with lingonberries.  Yum!

Our next brunch will be the first Sunday of May and we’re also having a happy hour next Wednesday, April 11.  If you want in, email me at LGRAB@letsgorideabike.com and I’ll add you to the mailing list.  Don’t be shy – we’re a friendly bunch!

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March Nashville Bike Brunch

March has been full of sun and warmth, but also some killer winds and sudden storms. (Lion’s breath?) But we gathered our biggest group yet for a late brunch on March 11 at Margot Café.

We even filled the bike rack! It was a proud moment.

This time around, I got portraits of almost everyone and their bikes. Tell me you’re impressed, Internet. :)

Lauren

Abby

Sarah

Chad

Kim

Whitney

Jessica & Sten

Me

 

Our April bike brunch will be Sunday, April 1, at 11 am at West End Café. RSVP via email and let me know you’re coming. New faces are always welcome!

 

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