2016 HOT Rally – Austin, TX
From Mike Librik:
Well it didn’t rain us out this year, so things went much more in the way we planned.
This year’s HOT had a fresh new feel as Anthony Fernandez took the reins from the event’s original genius Jane Knight. Anthony, who organizes events for a living through his company Austin Event Lighting, brought loads of equipment, a cluster of new volunteers, and his own crazy energy. It was a relief to see the way he threw himself at the final organizing tasks in the days before the event. Ahh, it is so nice having staff. We also had the energetic services of Rebecca di Luce, who will head up planning for the 2017 rally.
Another new addition was the use of the L.A. Fitness parking lot and facility for the Rodeo and Recumbent University. Up on Anderson Lane, this was close in to the shop and nice and flat. Anthony’s crew built up an impressive starting line with timing equipment and a PA. We held our tech clinic outside and moved inside for Bicycle Man Peter Stull’s talk on the history and development of recumbent cycles. L.A. Fitness had one hiccup… a sudden change in management resulted in their completely losing track of our event! Happily, Anthony had the foresight to keep checking in with them and was aghast to call one day and get a “what?” answer from them. He straightened that out, but on the day of the event our ‘Bent U activities were delayed by another class that LAF had double-booked in their classroom. A nice facility, but an exercise in patience.
An added bonus was Anthony’s great idea of inviting the monthly Frankenbike Swap Meet to the rodeo site. Each month, anyone with bike gear can show up and unload it, creating a lively bazaar of bikey stuff. It gave our HOTties an additional diversion during the lunch, the Rodeo, and some of the ‘Bent U talks.
Our Sunday rides went off fine, without any spectacular crashes on the Scenic Ride. I led the “Semi-tough” ride, which went out past the historic New Sweden church. While I don’t recall any problems, some months later a customer of mine stopped in and reported that while he was out tottling about in his velomobile he was accosted by the minister of the church who complained about the day that lots of people on funny bikes were blocking the highway on a Sunday morning. I dunno what to say. Drive friendly, ya’ll.
The problem with asking me for a report on festivities is that my idea of success is often satisfied with a lack of bloodshed or litigation. All in all it sounds like we did just fine. I was too busy running around managing things to see just what was happening.