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Taking a ride on the brewery express

Local breweries launch West Side Brewery Bike Loop


With warmer weather starting to heat things up in the Lakewood area, it won't be long before residents start taking to their bikes for transportation and for fun.

And now, from April through September, beer aficionados can use their bikes for the first series of the West Side Brewery Bike Loop.

“During the last couple summers, my wife and I would do our own bike tour of breweries on the east side of town, and we started inviting friends along,” explained Brian Haitz, marketing and operations manager of WestFax Brewing Company. “When I joined the team here, we started talking with other local breweries about making an official loop event for the area.”

WestFax worked with by Joyride, Hogshead, and Seedstock breweries, and together they developed a 6.7-mile loop event that will be held on the last Saturday of the month, beginning on April 28 and ending in September.

“The tour was partly inspired by brewery bus tours that have popped up,” said Taylor Porter, taproom manager at Seedstock. “We're all neighbors in this great brewery community, and this gives everyone an opportunity to meet each other and try new places.”

The loop was developed by Ginny Mason, a local cartographer, with a focus on creating a route that could be safely and casually traveled by cyclists of all skill levels. It begins at WestFax at noon, and he longest portion is the first — a 2.2-mile ride from WestFax to Joyride. From there, it goes to Hogshead, and ends at Seedstock. Riders can create their own routes instead of following the official, if they prefer.

“Places like the RiNo district and Sloans Lake are so busy anymore,” said Dave Bergen, co-owner and brewmaster at Joyride. “We're taking that same pub crawl experience and adding our own take on it.”

Attendees will receive a punch card on the day of the ride from any participating brewery's taproom. This punch card offers $1 off a pint once punched at each brewery. After the punch card is completed by cyclists finishing the loop, it is also valid for one free pint at any of the four breweries any date after the ride. There will also be beer and schwag giveaways for participants along the way at the different taprooms.

“There are so many breweries out there, we have to find ways to set ourselves apart. And this loop adds a sense of discovery to the event,” said Bergen. “It's always more fun to do these kinds of events with groups of people, and everyone is going to meet cool people along the way.”

In addition to safety in numbers, the breweries are encouraged to ensure they have the proper safety equipment, like helmets, reflectors and lights, and that their bikes are in working condition. Participants should also be aware of their alcohol intake and stay aware while riding.

“One of my favorite things about the beer community is that it's not pretentious or overly-competitive. We all recommend other breweries to our customers, and just want them to have the best beer drinking experience,” Porter said.

Haitz agreed and added that he hopes riders learn more about their local beer community.

“This is an essentially free event for participants, and a chance to cross promote our communities,” he said. “We're hoping we see a lot of first timers at our breweries as part of the loop.”


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