Charleston Fashion Week wasn’t the only game in town last week. If you were on the peninsula you probably noticed sweaty cyclists — hordes of them — riding down King Street or posting up at local dive bars, their fixies parked out front. They gathered from all over the East Coast for Bike! Bike! Southeast conference, hosted by the Holy City Bike Co-op. The weekend-long event included seminars, meet and greets, mystery rides, and part swaps, wrapping up with a big party at the Tattooed Moose on Saturday.
The Royal Tinfoil played a blend of indie folk rock that was perfect for the venue and the PBR-swilling, Parliament-puffing crowd — how can you go wrong with a stand-up bass and washboard? The restaurant’s newly finished front deck buzzed with bike talk and attendees reliving the events of the weekend — highlights seemed to be Speed Greeting and Bike Polo. A screenprinter churned out T-shirts, and though she looked like a hot mess, the shirts came out better than we expected and local beer brewers Coast and Palmetto provided beer specials for the thrifty crowd.
Cyclists’ reasons for riding are diverse — whether to have fun, save money, or save the earth — but regardless of their differences, Bike! Bike! attendees bonded quickly over a strong shared love of the bike.