On June 14th 2014 we held our 4th All-Girl Alleycat, Girls of Summer. Its crazy to think we have done four of these things, but we know for sure this one was the biggest and best. 65 Seattle bicycle women climbed Beacon Hill just to get to the start at Dr. Jose Rizal Park to then race through the Seattle city streets to checkpoints where the volunteers would make sure they fill the requirements, kill at the very best route for 22 tough miles (our longest yet), and of course enjoy each other’s company. The day started out with all our stop volunteers meeting at the park before the ladies showed up to get their top secret assignments and equipment.
These guys were great and up for everything. It has gotten to be pretty well known by now that instead of signing the manifest they paint a nail, so now the guys are always excited and double checking if they got their nail polish, “You’re sure the nail polish is in here right?”. They all toted their props (some pretty heavy) to their assigned stops and were ready to go by 3pm.
The girls started to arrive, 65 of them to be exact. There were so many different types of bikes and ladies, it was great seeing them all in one place. Some women now know each other from past years and chat and catch up, possibly secretly thinking about their strategy to beat them.
We had the racers put their bikes up on the little hill away from the racers and lock their bike to itself. As we kicked the racers out of that area we put manifests in the spokes of their wheels. We then gathered the girls up, gave the schpiel (seriously dont lose your manifest, no really, just don’t), said go, and watched them run to their bikes.
We try to have a theme for the stops each year. The first year was playing on female stereotypes, the second year was rockers, last years was…. oh yeah we failed that year, and this year’s theme was love of your bike.
The morning after stop: Terminal 105 Park where they had to eat a mini donut, do a shot of cheap (and I mean cheap!) vodka, and a shot of ketchup. Don’t worry we were nice, we also gave them olives. This is a race, there is no time for a fancy bloody mary.
Sometimes your bike wants to feel pretty: At the Pacific Connections Garden in the Arboretum we provided various flare for the women to decorate their bike. They also got handed an invitation (secret stop, duh) to go document their love. They could hit this stop at any point and time in the race.
Love is a challenge: Speaking of challenges…. cyclocross. The ladies had to ride am awesome cyclocross course including hills and barriers to go over.
Sometimes you feel a bit deflated: We brought back the tire change stop again this year but added an extra twist. Like last year we provided wheels BUT this year if you took out your own tube on your bike you got an extra 5 minute time bonus. This was a game changer for first and second place but also bit some people in the butt who ended up having a flat later in the race. It also put our math skills to the test as people were coming in. Minus 5 is hard for Monica, thank god Margaret was there.
Poetry: When you like biking you don’t need a Cyrano de Bergerac to declare it. The women had to write a love poem to their bike/biking. Pretty easy stop for the racer but the volunteers had a tougher time with it. They had to judge the best ones and from what I heard they ended up in a pretty heated debate.
Secret Stop: Finally they headed to the secret stop where the women had to document this magical moment by taking a classic prom style photo with their favorite date, their bike…. aaawwwwww, with an under the sea backdrop.
Once we knew the women were in the hands of the volunteers we headed over to the after party at Twilight Exit to set up and before we even knew it the ladies started arriving. These girls were seriously impressive. Check out the time of all the ladies at the end of this post. More racers arrived and the ladies enjoyed the fruits of their labor with yummy beverages on the fantastic patio. Periodically it would sprinkle but nothing was going to dampen everyone’s spirits.
We started out the awards. The awards would be nothing without the great stuff from our truly supportive sponsors below. Please thank them, support them, and mention Girls of Summer. They are great businesses that love girls on bikes.
We have a Flickr group with pic of the race so please upload any pictures you have. We will be adding more as we get them from each photographer so keep visiting. We would also love to see the routes people took, if you have them mapped out add the link in the comments or post it on our facebook page.
Thanks ladies and men!
Monica, Heather, and Margaret
Much love to our amazing sponsors!
The best road bikes money can buy.
Verity Credit Union
Happy to help you get in gear with a bicycle loan.
Used bikes, new bikes, plus a full array of both new and used bicycle components, accessories, and parts.
Cascadia Pet Furniture
Cat trees made from naturally sourced materials.
For over 15 years, Chrome has been making gear that lasts. They never forget that people count on it.
Awesome protective gear for riding.
Waterproof, handmade, custom courier bags.
Distinctive urban outerwear for the rain-or-shine approach to life.
Alternate routes for your ride.
Seattle Powder Coat
Make that bike pretty with the best powder coater in the city.
Hip and functional lights, cycle computers, locks, bags, and more.
Women owned friendly tattoo studio.
Wheels when you want them.
Emerald City Bicycles
A one-on-one bike shop, offering repairs, builds, and sales
Liquid Courage Flasks
Handmade flasks to match every personality!
Back Alley Bike Repair
Bicycle repair, sales and service in Pioneer Square and Downtown Seattle.
Unique, hand-crafted baskets for your bicycle.
Sex toys for a passionate world.
The strongest + best rims ever!
Produces urban cycling clothing and accessories for day-to-day bicycle transportation
Peddler Brewing Company
Bike centric microbrewery and tasting room in the Ballard neighborhood
Adjustable foot straps with durability, and style.
1. Marcy: 1:42
2. Megan W.: 1:43
3. Mariya: 1:53 (1st Master and MTB)
4. Jenna: 2:05
5. Maile: 2:06
6. Reebs: 2:06:30
7. Kiva: 2:06:45
8. Christine S. 2:12
9. Theresa: 2:26 (two flats)
10. Ari: 2:32
11. Yo Handa: 2:32:10 (rad poem)
12. Clarissa: 2:37
13. Naomi: 2:38
14. Natalie: 2:38:10 (First Fixed + rad poem)
15. Kara: 2:38:20
16. Windy: 2:41
17. Anne: 2:42
18. Nalisha: 2:43 (rad poem)
19. Emily: 2:45
20. Erika: 2:48
21. Alexa: 2:48:10
22. Kiandra: 2:49
23. Ayla: 2:49:10
24. Robin: 2:50
25. Lisa: 2:53
26: Keri B: 2:54
27. Laura G.: 2:55 (best decor)
28. Cayla: 2:56
29. Lisa: 2:56:10
30. Suzanne: 2:57
31. Elizabeth: 3:00
32. Kara: 3:00:10
33. Sasha: 3:02
34. Sonia M.: 3:02
35. Leah: 3:04
36. Linda: 3:04:10
37. Sydney: 3:06
38. Katie G.: 3:07
39. Ilana H. 3:08
40. Jenny: 3:08
41. Erin: 3:08
42. Elisa: 3:08
43. Lori B.: 3:14
44. Denise: 3:14
45. Lauren: 3:15
46. Betsy J.: 3:15
47. Dayna: 3:15
Jennifer L. (Farthest traveled)
Stephanie T. (best poem)