With new additions and favorite events, the sixth annual Breck Bike Week kicks off Wednesday and runs through Sunday, just in time for the arrival of the seven-day USA Pro Challenge bike race.
Hosted by Breckenridge’s destination marketing organization GoBreck, Breck Bike Week aims to attract everyone from hardcore cyclists to “people who are just out cruising with their family,” said Rachel Zerowin, GoBreck’s public relations manager.
The event promotes local bicycling culture with free activities that include high-end bike demos, guided group rides, trail building, lectures, clinics, free bike tunes and kids’ races.
Gavin Dalgliesh, GoBreck’s events coordinator, said the event started a few years before the Pro Challenge and used to fall on the weekend after the Fourth of July.
“It was a great way for us to introduce people to our amazing network of trails that we are so lucky to have here in Breckenridge and some great initiatives that the town has put forward,” he said.
This year, the town hopes to capture the excitement of the professional cyclists coming to town on Friday, Aug. 22, by aligning Breck Bike Week with the race.
Though the Breck Bike Week is packed with events, Dalgliesh said the biggest is the poker ride Saturday.
“It’s a really light-hearted, fun ride that often includes a little bit of drinking along the way — and certainly at the after-party — with the idea that you go around and hit all these stations and try to get the best hand and win some cool stuff,” he said. “Everybody leaves with something in their hand after that ride.”
The costumed bar crawl, where riders dress silly and take a lap down Main Street after each bar stop, is also a favorite.
A Jumbotron on the Riverwalk Center Lawn, which will normally show the Pro Challenge race, will feature a bike-in movie Thursday night.
Dalgliesh said the event picked “Dumb and Dumber,” the comedy with Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels, because of its ties to Breckenridge. The downtown is featured in the film as well as Copper Mountain.
“You get a few sweet shots of Main Street looking down, so hopefully we’ll get some hoots and hollers out of that,” he said.
On Sunday, locals and visitors alike will ride with Mayor John Warner.
“The ride with the mayor on Sunday is one of my favorite things to do. It’s a pretty easy cruise,” Dalgliesh said, adding that he enjoys hearing about what’s going on in the community from the mayor.
Changes to the event this year include the addition of a second women’s clinic.
Dalgliesh described the clinics as a fun way to “meet up with other lady riders who are into the same thing or just brush up on their skills.”
He said he also added self-guided biking loops so people trying out demo bikes have somewhere to ride. They are easier trails signed and ranked by difficulty.
“The town has done such an excellent job of building up not just the trails but also the riding facilities,” he said. “Breck Bike Week is really a great time to show off all those assets we have here in town.”
For more information, visit breckbikeweek.com.
Summit Daily News special sections editor Jessica Smith contributed to this report.
BRECK BIKE WEEK SCHEDULE
Every day, Aug. 20-24
Self-guided Loops: Choose between three well marked self-guided loops starting from the Blue River Plaza. Loops are designated by green (easiest), blue (moderate) and black (most difficult) arrows to guide you through some great singletrack around Breckenridge. Ask for details at the Breckenridge Welcome Center.
Jumbotron: Catch all the action of the Pro Challenge on the jumbo television on the Riverwalk Center Lawn.
Wednesday, Aug. 20
Yeti Beti Women’s MTB Skills Clinic / 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. This mountain bike skills workshop designed by women, for women is geared to those new to the sport of mountain biking or beginner/intermediate riders looking to improve their skills on the trail. The free clinic will meet at the expo area at 9:40 a.m. (departing at 10 a.m.), so come ready to ride and contact Cat Ambrose (firstname.lastname@example.org) with questions.
Summit Mountain Challenge Time Trial: Race from Breckenridge to Frisco on the Peaks Trail! This time trial race starts at the Breckenridge Nordic Center and sends you up Ski Hill Road to the Peaks Trail and finishes on Miners Creek Road, just before you cross the rec path. Register online at MavSports.com or in local stores: Alpine Sports, Avalanche Sports, Carvers, Mountain Sports Outlet, Podium Sports and Wilderness Sports.
Thursday, Aug. 21
Yeti Beti Women’s MTB Skills Clinic / 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Breckenridge Cruisers Ride / 6 p.m. ‘til the party ends: Calling all cruisers, clunkers and townies — It’s time to let your bike-freak flag fly! Take some laps around town and stop in top bars along the way. Come prepared with both a headlight and taillight if you plan on riding after dark. See their Facebook page (Facebook.com/breckenridge.cruisers) for starting location and costume theme.
Bike-in movie: Dumb and Dumber / 7 p.m. The Breckenridge Restaurant Association brings Dumb and Dumber for the bike-in movie night on the Riverwalk Center Lawn. Bring blankets and picnic supplies for a night under the stars.
Friday, Aug. 22
USA Pro Challenge Returns to Breck: Join us for the Stage 5 Finish of one of the largest cycling events in U.S. history. Ripstoke stunt bikes will perform at various times throughout the day on the Riverwalk Center Lawn.
Noon: Breck Grand Vacations Strider Challenge – Main Street between Adams and Washington; Festival Village Opens
1 pm: Breckenridge Outdoor Education Center ride – Main Street
1:30 pm: Funkadelic Pond Crossing Challenge: Join local celebrities, athletes and daredevils as they attempt to bike across the chilly dredge pond on a floating platform.
3 p.m. to 3:30 pm: First USA Pro Challenge athletes expected to enter downtown at Main Street and Park Avenue
3:45 pm: Expected race finish, awards to follow
7 pm: Free concert at the Riverwalk Center with Big Head Todd and the Monsters (doors at 7, show at 7:30)
Saturday, Aug. 23
Bike Demos / 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Try out the latest bikes for free. Browse the options at the expo area in the Blue River Plaza.
Bike Information Desk / 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Local experts provide visitors with ride tips, event updates, general bike information, maps and merchandise in the Blue River Plaza.
Technical Support / 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Local bike shops offer their professional mechanic services free of charge in the Expo.
Poker Ride Presented by Carvers / 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Hit the dirt for an all-for-fun marked ride highlighting the best singletrack in town. Collect playing cards at designated aid stations and assemble your best poker hand for a chance to win big prizes. The $20 ($25 day of, cash or check only) fee includes ride, prize, party, a free beer and chance to win BIG. A portion of proceeds support local cycling organizations. Meet in the Blue River Plaza.
Go Fish Ride Presented by Peak-A-Boo Toys / 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Affectionately named, this is the kids’ version of the Poker Ride. Little ones and their parents will take to some kid-friendly single track. At the end, kids will play a round of Go Fish with another rider and everybody wins a prize. FREE for kids under 10.
Poker Ride / Go Fish Ride AFTER PARTY / 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. May the best hand win! Celebrate at Kenosha Steakhouse with fellow riders/gamblers.
Kids’ races at Breckenridge Ski Resort / following the Poker Ride: From Strider races to family-style super D, kid-friendly races let all ages join in the fun at the base of Peak 8 in Breckenridge.
Sunday, Aug. 24
Bike Demos / 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Try out the latest bikes for free. Browse the options at the Expo area in the Blue River Plaza.
Bike Information Desk / 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Local experts provide visitors with ride tips, event updates, general bike information, maps and merchandise. Located in the Blue River Plaza.
Technical Support / 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Local bike shops offer free professional mechanic services in the Expo.
Ride with the Mayor / 10 a.m. Enjoy a scenic, informative tour of the town historic sites with Mayor John Warner and the Breckenridge Heritage Alliance. This will be a combination of both on- and off-road riding, suitable for all riders including beginners comfortable pedaling on dirt roads. Meet at the Expo.