Sunday, March 20, 2011

A Good Experience at the Lifestyle Bike Experience

Yesterday my family headed to the Mall of America to check out the Lifestyle Bike Experience - an expo type of event put on by HaveFunBiking.com, "Your News Source for Bicycling Information." An article on HaveFunBiking had information about the event. Here's an excerpt of what the event had to offer:

"Those who visit MOA will have a chance to explore some of the latest bicycle opportunities: Try out easy to ride bicycles; find ideas for comfortable clothing; take in a five-minute clinics for safe and healthy commuting to school or work; discover great places to bike; plus... many bicycle related games and prizes."




We would not normally head to the Mall of America on a Saturday afternoon and it was an absolute zoo - we almost turned back when we saw how busy the place was - yet we heard about the event from our friends at Valley Bike and Ski and wanted to check it out.

We're glad we did. The Best Buy Rotunda section of the MOA was full of bikes and bicycling information. Several area shops were there with their bikes on display - I think Valley Bike and Ski, Erik's Bike Shop and Penn Cycle were the shops represented, I may have missed someone. There were representatives from Have Fun Biking, information on bike safety, rides, tours, trails, and events like the Nature Valley Bicycle Festival and Grand Prix. We had a chance to talk to our friends from Valley and met a few new people, too.

There were also people from the National Sports Center Velodrome there, pedaling fixies (bikes with one speed and no brakes) on trainers (these were "rollers"). Did you know we have a bike race track in Minnesota? And that it's been here for 20 years? I didn't. I'm hoping to get up there - it's in Blaine, about an hour or so from my home - and check out some racing this year.

The highlight of the afternoon for us was watching stunt rider, Chris Clark, maneuver his Giant STP over people, onto huge plywood boxes, across wood bridges and through the air. He did this all in a very small space and all with great precision and skill. It was fun to watch him! After his show, we got to meet him and talk to him about how he got started doing "freeride" bicycling. He autographed a bike water bottle for Ryan and gave him a Giant Bicycles t-shirt. Ryan put it on when he got home and hasn't taken it off since.


Even for a family who is pretty in the know about bicycling, there was enough new information for us to make visiting the Lifestyle Bike Experience worthwhile. I do wish the publicity for the event would have been more thorough - I struggled to find information on the event on the internet and really wish a schedule would have been published stating Chris' name and the times he performed. I also found the MOA venue difficult - it was hard to hear and so crowded - but I can't think of a better site off hand.

All in all, the Lifestyle Bike Experience was a good experience. I'm sure it stirred up a lot of excitement for bikes and bicycling. I know it did for me and my family!

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