By Dave Overton
Bike and eat, bike and eat, bike and eat. Can you think of anything better than that? As part of Bicycle Month in Lexington, Bike Lexington hosted a progressive dinner on May 6th. Most people are familiar with the concept of a progressive dinner and may even have participated in one. You go to different restaurants in progression, eating a course in each. Bike Lexington has added a new twist to the progressive dinner, making the journey between restaurants on bicycles.
I asked Shane Tedder, the event organizer, about the purpose of the event. I expected him to tell me about how it raised awareness of bicycling or another worthy cause. I started to laugh when he looked at me quizzically and said â€œItâ€™s for fun.â€ He added
â€œBikes are fun. Food is good. Bikes plus food are good fun.â€ That sounded like a lot of fun to me, so Jenn (the girlfriend) and I went along.
Twenty Five dollars per person paid for a three course meal and the guided group ride to each restaurant . We met at Cheapside Park which was hopping with Thur sda y Night Live. There were a lot of people around but it was easy to tell which people were going along. They were the ones with the bikes and helmets (required for Bike Lexington events). The ride was carefully planned for safety and accessibility. Even novice riders were able to ride along without difficulty. Jenn was a bit apprehensive because of the hills downtown, but had no difficulty at all. She comes from the Eastern Shore of Maryland and to her, the downtown hills look like mountains when itâ€™s time to pedal up them.
Our first stop was at Alltech Lexington Brewing , home of Kentucky Ale and Bourbon Barrel Ale. They had a nice buffet of vegetables, fruits, crackers, beer cheese and pretzels. The high point, though, was sampling the beers and, of course, getting to know some of the other people on the ride. After a tour of the brewery, we all hopped back on our bikes and headed down the road to Miaâ€™s for the next course.
At Miaâ€™s, we went upstairs to a banquet room where they had laid out bread, salad, and several pasta dishes for us, including a vegetarian ziti with tomato sauce and a farfalle carbonara for those who eat meat. Iced tea or water was included but wine, beer,
or liquor were optional. Again, the best part of the meal was sharing food and drink with new acquaintances.
We gathered together outside Miaâ€™s for a group photo and then headed for Natashaâ€™s and the final stop of the evening. There we enjoyed a choice of desserts and coffee and conversed until a l m o s t dark before heading back to our respective homes . We had biked less than 2 miles, eaten a three course dinner , and made a few new friends. It was quite an accomplishment for a single evening.
This is the spot where normally Iâ€™d point and laugh, saying that youâ€™ve already missed it for this year. Itâ€™s been held for three years and has sold out every year.
But, Bike Lexington is holding another progressive dinner on May 25th on Southland Drive. The Southland Association has raised and contributed $30,000 toward a project to add bike lanes to Southland Dr. To celebrate and show appreciation for this, Bike Lexington has added a second event. The ride will start at Hill â€˜nâ€™ Dale Park and is tentatively scheduled to make stops at Good Foods, Winchells, The Ketch, and Butt Rub BBQ, with a stop at the South-land Jamboree . Food , Music, and Bikes should make for a great time.