7 Best Group Bike Rides in Metro Phoenix

Janessa Hilliard
Phoenix bike rack at The Clarendon Hotel in Phoenix, created by Ruben Gonzales of The Lab Pop-Up Gallery.

For those who prefer the bike lane to the HOV, there are plenty of group cycling rides criss-crossing the metro area. Each began with the goals of combating car-centric culture and, more often than not, pounding a refreshing pint or pitcher. Here are the top seven regular rides around city streets.

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Cyclo Mesa's El Tour Criterium to Hold Qualifiers for Red Bull Ride + Style

Facebook / The El Tour Criterium
Bikers, get ready to show off your skills on wheels.

CycloMesa, formerly known as The Great Arizona Bicycle Festival, is returning to the East Valley Friday and Saturday, April 4 and 5. And, in addition to the racers, vendors, beer garden, and live music, the two-day festival has announced it's also holding qualifiers for the Red Bull Ride + Style.

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Phoenix Bike Share to Launch in Early 2014

Courtesy of Grid Bikes

Phoenix's bike share program now has a name: Grid Bikes (styled Gr:D). The bright green bikes are emblazoned with a smiley face and instructions to "Ride Happy!"

Mayor Greg Stanton unveiled the name and logo last Monday at the National Association of City Transportation Officials Phoenix conference at Hotel Palomar.

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The Heavy Pedal Presents the Life After Death Race in Downtown Phoenix

Michael Klinger/The Heavy Pedal
Victor Vasquez of The Heavy Pedal in a "Death Race" shirt the company designed in 2011.

This time last year, Bryan Harding was getting a new tattoo. On a Saturday evening before Halloween, the local bicyclist, who works for State Bicycle Co., raced (literally) to Electric Haven Tattoo shop in Tempe. There he waited, perhaps not-so patiently or painlessly, as his left side became the canvas for a piece he did not choose and didn't even pay for, but certainly wanted -- if only because it guaranteed him first place in one of the most anticipated underground events in the Phoenix biking community: The Death Race.

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Pedal Craft Volume 3 Opens at Monorchid in Phoenix Oct. 25

Benjamin Leatherman
Some of the posters from Pedal Craft 2012

Pedal Craft Volume 3 will help bring Phoenix Design Week to a close on Friday, October 25, from 6 to 10 p.m. at Monorchid in downtown Phoenix.

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Grand Avenue Bike Lane Opens in Downtown Phoenix

Categories: Bicycle Culture

Jeremiah Toller
The new, Grand Avenue bike lane. Yeah, it's literally green.
The Grand Avenue Merchants Association cut the ribbon on new, green bike lanes, conveniently completed in time for the Grand Avenue Festival this past weekend.

In addition to the new bike lanes, which run northwest along Grand from Seventh Avenue to 15th Avenue, Grand Avenue received a more substantial facelift, with new LED street lighting, desert landscaping, decorative crosswalks designed by Bob Graham, and new bike racks to accommodate an expected increase in bike traffic.

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7 Things We're Looking Forward to at Tour de Fat in Tempe This Weekend

Benjamin Leatherman
DeVotchKa performs during last year's Tour de Fat at Tempe Beach Park.
The weather's been unexpectedly pleasant lately, which means your lazy ass has one less excuse for not going outside. Perhaps you might even consider dusting off that bicycle that's been cloistered in the garage since May and going for a ride.

If you require further incentive to mount your neglected steed, how's about some potent brews served up with a chaser of bizarre characters and off-the-wall entertainment? Such a mix will be on tap this weekend when the annual Tour de Fat rolls into Tempe Beach Park.

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Downtown Phoenix's Rusty Spoke Community Bicycle Collective Moves to New Home

Rusty Spoke Wheels.JPG
Jason Franz
Inside the Rusty Spoke Bicycle Collective's former location.
It looks like the folks behind downtown Phoenix's Rusty Spoke Bicycle Collective have packed up their pedals and headed to a new place to park their rides.

The nonprofit and volunteer-run bike co-operative -- which serves as a DIY repair spot, grassroots cycling resource, and community event space -- spent last weekend moving to a new location that's a little more than a mile south of its former home along Grand Avenue.

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Sunday Cycles Bike Shop Now Carries Gently Used Camping Gear in Phoenix

Categories: Bicycle Culture

Sunday Cycles

When you're looking to hit the trails but escape the heat and/or avoid the plethora of novices oblivious to basic hiking etiquette we covered earlier this week, chances are good that a camping getaway is on your calendar. If you're putting off your next tent-pitching endeavor due to an aversion to seeing (and paying) the register total after loading up on the necessary equipment, consider checking out Phoenix's Sunday Cycles Bike Shop.

This past month the shop started selling camping, backpacking, and hiking gear. Having a locally-based alternative to the big box retailers is pretty cool, but Sunday Cycles ups the indie ante by buying people's lightly used gear on consignment.

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The Heavy Pedal Releases Spring 2013 Collection

Images Courtesy of Terrence Patrick, www.TheHeavyPedal.com
The new Heavy Pedal spring collection is available now.
What are the guys over at cycling-blog-turned-fashion-brand The Heavy Pedal up to these days? The Phoenix-based brand released their spring 2013 collection last week, and now it's gearing up for new ventures this summer.

The clothing company has gained notoriety (and fans -- almost 15,000 on Facebook) by issuing no apologies for its bold, in-your-face attitude. "From the first glance at the designs, one could tell we were very military inspired this season," Heavy Pedal founder Terrence Patrick says. "I am sure that is falling into the current trend of camouflage and military motifs in fashion currently."

See also:
The Five Worst Summer Fashion Trends of 2013
Cycle: Underground Crit Brings Agressive Group Riding to North Phoenix

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