High Bridge Ride
What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of the month of May? Flowers? Parades? Well, if you’re an avid cyclist (and have Frank D in your employ) then the correct answer is The National Bike Challenge! CCRi cyclists participate in this event each year with great enthusiasm and good-natured competitiveness. This year the NBC changed up the format a little, with The National League of Bicyclists teaming up with Love to Ride, to have the challenge run just for the Month of May (instead of May through September), taking the summer off, and then returning for another challenge in the month of September. This certainly makes it easier for people who don’t want to put in daily miles during the blistering heat of summer!
A few intrepid cyclists (namely Frank, Don R and myself) decided to get a jump on the cycling season by participating in the Highbridge Trail Ride to raise money and awareness for the Alzheimer’s Association “The Longest Day”. This was the first annual ride, and it was well organized by a lot of friendly people in the equally friendly and inviting town of Farmville, VA. The Highbridge Trail is a wide, mostly flat, cycling, walking and horseback riding trail that sits on a former rail bed, and is currently 31 miles long, and growing. It consists of mostly finely crushed gravel, except for the portion that travels directly over the Appomattox River. This is the famous wooden High Bridge portion of the trail that allows for great scenery for many miles. It also served as a great midway point to stop and appreciate the spectacular spring weather we were having that day.
National Bike Challenge
CCRi pulled together three teams for this year’s challenge: Alpha, Beta and Gamma. Of all the dozens upon dozens of team pools in the country, Team Alpha (Frank, Jeff G, me, James C, Don R, Carsten M Matz, and Leon) is currently sitting at number one! Frank D deserves a lot of credit for keeping the wheels of bicycle awareness and activity going.
When he’s not making sure that there’s enough beer in the kegs, helping with conference planning and making sure a lot of back-end functions actually work, Andrew H can occasionally be seen with a teddy bear, or two.
Falling just one day shy of Cinco de Mayo, our annual Spring Picnic and Brewfest felt well entitled to adopt the CdM theme with tacos, guacamole, chips and lots of beer. Salads, desserts and other potluck rounded out the menu. As usual, Chef Master Kyle outdid himself on his brand spankin’ new grill, serving up grilled flank steak, peppers and hot dogs. On the brewing front this time, due to personal schedules, only two brewers treated us to their fermented handiwork, and we were happy they did. Joseph Featherston produced the most popular brew of the day. His British Golden Ale named “Gold Bullion”(4.8% ABV) was described as “an IPA’s more restrained sibling, using solely Bullion hops to lend a hint of spice and black currant”. It was delicious! In second place was Will Makabenta’s Red Rye Ale (4.5% ABV), another tasty and popular brew, which he named “Chat Clown Rye.” Finally, Joseph also brought in a sampling of his mulberry mead to add a distinct berry flavor to the samplings. And miraculously, unlike in the past, the weather actually cooperated for the entirety of the event with lots of room to enjoy Frisbee on the large field, and for the children to enjoy the sand pit. Leigh brought her yellow lab puppy “Banks”, who was the recipient of much adoration. A good time was had by all.