Now that the dust has settled from HalloWheels 2016, I’ve been charged with documenting the event for all of the interwebs to see, and I’ve been putting it off for a week now partially because “life is busy” but also, I don’t know where to start.
Without a doubt, there would be lots of “Thank You’s” to give.
I would thank everyone who attended our events. It was the largest turnout we’ve had for our short history of HalloWheels festivals! I would definitely thank all of our partners who came through for us big time this year! From Camel City BBQ Factory and Hoots, who donated a portion of their proceeds to fund the event, to Marketplace Cinema, who gave us special pricing on the movie and snacks. Stella Brew, who gave out samples during the scavenger hunt and donated a gift certificate for some great beer. Camino Bakery, who hooked us up with coffee before the Tweed ride. Farm to Feet, who gave away over $500 worth of the world’s best socks! And our awesome friend in Ardmore who hosted a stop a group of riders and helped them craft something special for Halloween. I’d also call out Trey Hooper, the local artist who designed the awesome artwork for this year’s events and our volunteers who ran valet bike parking during the Bike-In Movie. Then, there would be the BeersNGears team that helped make it all happen with the hours and hours of emails, phone calls, meetings, idea pitches, planning and preparing. We couldn’t have done this without a single person who helped us along the way. (Thank you!)
Then, my creative process and my ridiculous need to try something new kicks in.
I don’t want to just post a bunch of “Thank You’s” and “See Ya Next Year’s” and be done with it. I want it to be insightful, maybe somewhat noteworthy, possibly even worth a read so I start thinking of highlights from all of the events like Dumptruck Junior finishing the Spooky Scavenger Hunt challenge in just over an hour — the dude is a beast — or how we took a quick detour while on the Tweed Ride to snag some beer samples and visit with some friends at Whole Foods. After some reflection, I’m still left with the question, “How can I take all these bits of fun and excitement and include them with things I’m proud of like, ‘there’s only one multi-day, annual bicycle festival in Winston-Salem and we’ve held it 3 times now,’ while also being entertaining enough to read?”
If only I could draw some sort of meaning out of all of this.
I thought I could maybe make a connection between seeing all sorts of different people including adults, kids, men, women, people on road bikes wearing kits and people on mountain bikes wearing fairy costumes, and some wearing jeans and T-shirts with our core value of Diversity & Inclusion. BeersNGears wants everyone to ride and feel welcome at every event we do, but that stuff is dry and boring. I tried writing about how we are building new relationships with local businesses and strengthening our voice as cyclists every time we have another event. We’re really proud of what we’ve accomplished in such a short amount of time and one of our top priorities has always been supporting local business and building community, but I just couldn’t find the inspiration to write the next best seller. So I gave up on trying to find any meaning.
At some point, you just have to accept reality, for better or worse. Mine, I suppose is just writing a simple “Thank You” and “See Ya Next Year” and being done with it.
So if you came out to one of our HalloWheels events, sponsored a part of festival, or worked to help us be successful, sincerely, THANK YOU! We hope to see you next year (and at all the other events we do in between then)!
Every single person involved with this year’s festival helped us grow a little more and I’m so glad to have all of you as friends.
Until next time, keep the wheels spinning!