Author: Adam Bratton
Read Time: 4 mins
To be honest, I have zero self-control when someone asks, “do you want to go ride bikes and snag a beer?”. Maybe it’s the youth-like exuberance that continues to run rampant in me. Maybe it’s the desire to connect with people through sport and sweat. Maybe it’s the reward of exchanging stories and laughs over cold crafties.
Whatever the reason, I’m increasingly inspired and stoked how the Human Powered Movement platform continues to bring people together over shared experiences. This past weekend was another perfect example. We rode bikes, we drank beer in the rain, we gave freebies away, we made new friends. It was glorious.
Heading into the 2nd year of the Rocky River Shiver: A Hellacious MTB Event there is still a need to provide additional context to what this funky event is all about.
Good catch … I intentionally used the word “event” and not a “race”. My approach has always been based on way more than what happens between the start and finish lines. A far-reaching and unique experience has been building around the Shiver in its infant but encouraging stint of existence. Don’t get me wrong, there’s absolutely a competitive spirit embedded into the mix. In addition to tossing prizes to the top 3 in various categories, we are literally putting our money where our mouth is by offer a cash payout to any rider who finishes all three laps … regardless of time. Just finish and you make money. Cha-Ching!
More than that though, this event is designed to bring the mountain biking community together. Riders and hecklers alike have quickly reached towards their highlighter drawers to circle the calendar for this hot and spicy mountain bike beat down. Some riders have zero interest in finishing all three laps … totally fine. We’ve got prizes and giveaways for those that respectfully bow out to ride another day. Most hecklers are there for the communal spirit and badgering, the love of the sport, the emotional roller coaster of the shiverous participants. Friends and family hang out at Event HQ eagerly awaiting their battered and beaten loved ones at the turn of each lap. It’s a vibe for sure.
This year, we collaborated with world renounced cycling brand DeFeet to produce custom socks (US Merino wool and recycled poly) as the event giveaway. Taking it a step further, and in true human powered fashion, I recruited some amazing friends and hella-strong riders to hit the road to DeFeet HQ, enjoyed a full micro-sockery tour, resupply on espresso and Reese’s Cups (thanks Rob), and then packed the HPM socks in our bikepacking bags before pedaling back to Charlotte all while creating a cool short film. This is part of the experience.
I’m equally humbled and honored to position this event as a platform to raise awareness and financial support for our non-profit beneficiary Trips for Kids Charlotte/The Re-Cyclery. This organization continue to do immeasurable good in the world to get more kids on bikes and support the cycling community as a whole. They also produced some pretty bad ass awards for the top over all Male and Female riders. I’m honestly in awe of their work … donate HERE if you’re inspired like me. This definitely adds to the experience.
Remember the “bikes and beer” comment above? In addition to everyone snagging ice cold treats from our longtime partner Sierra Nevada on event day, I’ve been a homebrewer for 12 years and there is currently 10 gallons of homebrewed beer fermenting in my pantry right now (Thanks Kristi … love you!). These glorious and hand brewed, hand bottled, and hand labels rehydration gems will be available for all participants upon their finish or DNF … again experience.
Let’s bring this back to why I’m still stoked from this past weekend. We hosted the “Shiver Pre-Ride Party” on Sunday and although the weather clearly scared some people away (I learned a lot about each of you who were and were not there!), the event was exactly what I envisioned.
Longtime supporters and shredders were there, new faces immediately turned friends were there, and it was another impactful opportunity to add value to our bad ass supporting brands. We rode bikes, we drank beer, we won free stuff, most importantly we enjoyed a truly authentic and meaningful experience … what’s not to love?!
This is exactly what Human Powered Movement is all about. We facilitate greater human powered experiences. July 10th was an experience for sure, and it was just the beginning of something way bigger that is coming on August 7th.
Join us whatever capacity works for you. And yes, we will be riding bikes and drinking beer.
Journal - The Shiver Stoke is Rising
Human Powered Journal
Writings and musings of an active lifestyle
Adam Bratton is the Founder and Head Enabler at Human Powered Movement.
Guest Contributors are more compelling in written word and life in general.