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1st International Fixed Gear Symposium  //   Wednesday - April 6, 2005

This just in:

1st International Fixed Gear Symposium
August 12-14, 2005
Traverse City, Michigan

Three days of fun in Northern Michigan. Expecting 200+
Full information at
All Event Pass: $50 includes personalized spokecard,
event t-shirt, Friday evening barbeque, Saturday
evening banquet, all events.
Spouse/Partner: $35 all but T and card.

We are now taking reservations for space in our 20' x
30' expo tents and on the lawn for your display,
please contact Dennis for further details.

10 x 10 expo tent space (in 20x30 tent - $200.00 for
entire event.
Includes: 1 all event pass, and 1 partner/spouse pass.
(that's $80 right there: admission to all events for
both, 1 spokecard, 1 t-shirt, 2 passes to Friday
evening barbque and Saturday evening banquet)

If you are coming in a van or motorhome and want a
free site (there is no overnight allowed on the
Commons' grounds), please contact me as soon as

You can do anything with your booth space that you
want. Larger spaces are available, table/chairs are
extra- let me know what you need.

If you have your own pop-up tent/display, the cost is
$150 regardless of the size. (same includes as above)
There is plenty of room on the lawn here at the Grand
Traverse Commons, we will have security available 24
hrs for the protection of your displays.

If you have a powerpoint, slide show, or a personal
presentation on a subject of interest to all, please
let us know. We have an inside conference room with
seating for 75+ as well as projection and media
equipment. Contact Dennis for scheduling and with
details of what you need.

If you have special needs such as inside space for a
frame building demonstration, let us know. If you are
flying to Traverse City for this event, we will be
able to receive your products or equipments by either
common carrier or UPS/Fed-Ex earlier in the week. We
have secure storage available for these items.

Space is limited, confirm as soon as possible.

- riderx

How many words are there for rain?  //   Tuesday - April 5, 2005

Once again our Wednesday ride takes to the pavement. Only five of us make it out tonight and only two of us running fixed. We opt for a similar route as last week with a few more hills thrown in, most notably the ugly monster known as Ilchester that hits an 18% grade at one point. So steep I can barely turn over the cranks. I don't know if I was pedaling squares exactly, but it sure didn't feel like circles. The weather was nice and it was great to be riding in shorts and a light wool long-sleeve. After the mandatory bar stop the weather chilled but was still quite fine. Other than Jay's flat on the dark back road with no shoulder, things were pretty uneventful.

Saturday brought more rain. Waves, buckets, large volumes in general. Cruised down to northern Virginia where the IMBA Trail Care Crew was teaching a trail building class. If you haven't been to one of these it's definitely worth it. The first half is classroom time, the second half trail work. I learned most of this in the past but it was a good refresher. All of this stuff is covered in the excellent IMBA Trail Building book, so grab it if you can't make it to a class.

Of course, by the time we moved to the trail work another major storm moved in to really hammer us. The trails we went to work on had literally become streams thanks to massive run-off from a new building's parking lot shedding water straight into this watershed area. Trail liaison DT noted that the building in question is supposed to be one of those "green" buildings constructed with lots of recycled materials and whatnot. Looks like they overlooked some other environmental issues.

We split up into a few groups to attack different problems, then finished with a couple of hours of bench-cutting some new trail once the rain finally stopped. The new trail turned out sweet, the downhill portion finishes in a nice rock garden and we used some buried rock to construct a fine jump as an optional line.

Sunday saw our massive brew operation get back underway, been a bit since we fired up the kettles. Started the morning off right with some Dave's Insanity Bloody Mary Mix. That might just be the best Bloody Mary I've had. Tasty. Brewed up a couple of German ales this time around, a double Alt and a Kolsch, 24 gallons of malty goodness total. Keeping right in line with the usual brewing situation we got a little rain, a lot of wind and no sun. At least it was above freezing.

Monday saw an easy spin on the pavement in the park with my lady. Trails are way to wet to even consider riding. We got something like 10 inches of rain in the last week and a half. Possibly more later this week. Off for some powerline/fire road adventure biking tonight in a desperate attempt to avoid more road riding but not destroy any trails.

- riderx


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