Edmonton isn’t exactly known as a cycling culture mecca, but it is home to one of the longest running bicycle co-op and community workshops in North America. This year, Edmonton Bicycle Commuters celebrates it’s 30th anniversary, and to begin what will undoubtedly be a banner year, EBC hosted a bicycle art auction and party.
There were dozens of bikes outside, lined up in the snowbanks in single file all the way down the block, for lack of other places to park with the ridiculous amount of snow we've had this winter.
With an amazing turnout and standing room only, EBC oldtimers mixed with the new generation of folks who’re stepping in to take the reigns of an organization that’s older than many of them. Hipsters and polo players rubbed shoulders with vehicular cyclists and utilitarian commuters. Artists, musicians and dancers mingled with politicians and advocates. Everybody, young & old, chowed down on cupcakes and gourmet food and grooved to bands playing over a PA powered by 10 bicycles.
The place was packed with friendly faces.
Bikes hooked up to generators were positioned on stage to power the music for the evening. I love how the riders are moving but the bikes aren't in this longish exposure.
Current EBC president, Chris Chan's illustrious light bike on a generator.
And then there was the art, 70 pieces by over 30 different artists, all of it about or made of or for bicycles and cyclists.
Made by Jan P. (who has been doing the most AMAZING stuff for years) this thumb piano consists entirely of recycled parts, including spokes and other bicycle parts. In the background, handmade belts by Calvin.
Lovely photos of weathered bikes.
One of the auction tables. Check out the Viking costume by Jesse C in the foreground (the costume was a hit at Halloween Critical Mass).
Creepy specimen jars. (I find them creepy because they remind me of a disturbing incident with a certain former roommate - if you have to ask, do it in person, preferably bearing social lubricant).
A little something for everyone, bikey underwear and a photo of shiny sprockets.
Robot made of bike parts and reclaimed wire, by Bret.
Retroreflective magnets, by yours truly, that can be stuck to any steel frame or accessory for added visibility at night.
Multi media pieces depicting old-timey ladies on old-timey bikes by Stephanie M.
I made these up and donated them through my workplace (where, among other things, I design embroidery). I never imagined that they'd be the subject of such an intense bidding war.
Overall, the night was a phenomenal success. I never would’ve imagined that more than 200 people would come out to a bike centered party on a -20C winter night. Anna V. and the rest of the EBC crew put on a great event, and I think the overwhelming success bodes well for the future of EBC and the wider cycling scenes in Edmonton.