You’ve gotta love a good community bike ride. There are plenty of rides out there that promise features like, “A/B-ride”, “no drop”, “all skills”, “hammerfest”, “sprint zone”, etc. You know the drill. Show up in your trusty full kit with matching socks, a polished sheen on your frame, and get ready to grind. Well, there’s another kind of ride out there, y’all, my particular favorite. There’s still spandex, matching socks, and pretty bikes, but oh, is it different.
Once a month on Mondays, Beyond Bikes in Stuart, Florida does the “Monday Fun Ride”, a themed, slow-paced, happy hour type of get together on bikes. Any bike is appropriate and kids are often brought along for the ride with friends. The point is to be a little silly and have fun with friends doing what we love.
It starts in the parking lot of Beyond Bikes and takes a leisurely pace down to downtown Stuart’s iconic Coffee Bar blue door, where the group spends a half hour or so enjoying each others company, maybe a cider or beer, and a quick snack if dinner wasn’t possible before wheels-up at 630pm.
Each month, Beyond Bikes owners Julie & Bryan Liles come up with a new theme for fun or seasonal celebration. We always see lots of great outfits and because we’re mostly cyclists, the men aren’t afraid to don a pair of LuLaRoe leggings if it helps them pull off the theme with more pizzazz! Women will also wear whatever facial hair makes the outfit work. Lookin’ suave, Brittany!
The ride back, depending on the time of year, is either during the daylight or the dark, and at Christmas, it makes for a really fun little lights tour, as you can see in this video, which also features one of the Monday Fun Day Ride staples, Mike’s tandem fat-trike, which has been through a lot but has continually been loved on and rebuilt when handling skills didn’t quite meet the challenge of a steep climb, a sharp left, and a wall or when it turned out the hubs were the wrong size and the spokes pulled through on the rear wheel as was the case at Christmas. Oops. (please excuse the *bleep* at 34s😬)
The other staple is a little hangout at the shop afterward with whatever deliciousness Kirk has so creatively concocted for us to enjoy, plus at times, a little karaoke. We’re all really good singers, definitely.
Fun is always had, new Strava sprint zones are created on single speed coaster brake cruisers (because cyclists can’t help themselves), and it’s the place to be to see what OTHER bikes everyone has that they don’t normally get to ride or that NEW NEW you’ve been dying to road test (*cough*show off*cough*).
The group always gets lots of love from the restaurant goers seated outside in downtown Stuart as we ride by dinging all the bells we have and shouting greetings to all as we pass. We even pick up a stray cyclist or two along the way, like that friendly lady in high heels riding home from work. Maybe you should come join us next time or start your own in your area, as you can see, it’s tons of fun.
Here are the rest of the photos from that Monday Fun Day (Cinco de Mayo theme in May, in case you were wondering)! Have a community fun ride to share? Leave us a comment and we’ll post the gatherings on our BikeMinded Facebook page.