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Friday, June 01, 2007

photo: Dat Nguyen
Pedal Potluck Picnic
2007 Season-Ride 1
Tuesday 29 May 2007

"This would make a great site for the Village Building Convergence!"
-Take Down Matt

One of the ideas I had when I started to do Pedal Potluck Picnics back in the summer of 2005 was to go to "unused" public spaces. Spaces that superficially resemble a park (green lawn-like spots), but yet really aren't parks. Rides would go to these spots and challenge the notion they're "junk" land.

The "park" where we ended this ride, a green triangle wedged between SW Broadway, SW Broadway Dr, and SW Grant St, and fronting the Stadium Freeway (I-405). You can see where it is here.

It's passed by thousands of people everyday going into SW Portland, yet no one (save for an occasional dog walker) uses it. It has a great view of downtown and a row of nice houses behind it. But for all intents and purposes it's a "wasteland".

I doubt that there was any picnics at this spot before we got here. To most, having a picnic on this unkempt, weedy triangle is not a good idea. One participant was a little freaked at the prospect, and almost left as soon as we got there.

But as we got to the business of eating, we all realized that it wasn't bad at all. We sat far enough away from Broadway so that the constant hum of traffic didn't faze us. The tall grass meant extra cushioning under our butts. And the food--mmmm! Vegan mac n' cheese, pasta in basil sauce, a couple green salads, potato salads, hummus and veggies, brownies and more!

10 people made it from the start point of Food Front. 3 additional people showed up late, one of which serenaded us with his violin while the sun set. And a random cyclist heading to Barbur Blvd stopped and we fed him as well. We hung out for a couple hours until it got dark and headed on our merry way.

Click here to see the route of the ride.
More photos from Dat here.


This Tuesday, June 5th, we start from the Hawthorne Hostel, 3031 SE Hawthorne Blvd, at 6:30pm. Won't you join us?

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