Tour de Farce Redux

Yeah girl, you own it! Outside Burnhearts prior to the start.

West Side pal Brooklynn and I coasted down to Bay View for the traditional summer cycling season kick off, The Tour de Farce.  Like real summer in Wisconsin, you can’t put the date and start location for this underground pub crawl on your calendar, you just have to wait patiently through the spring and watch for the first sign.  I got an email about Saturday night’s ride event last Thursday.  The ride organizer keeps the event on the low down to limit participation.  He is worried that if the ride gets too big, it will get out of control and he could be held liable for any trouble.

Schwinners were well represented.

The waiting is the hardest part, but it helps to look good when you do it.

About 100 people managed to find the ride start at Burnhearts, one of the great newish bars in Bay View. The crowd mixed and mingled over a couple beers while waiting for start.  This year, the stops were not announced, instead you had to follow one of the ride marshals wearing yellow vests.  In previous years, the next location was written on the door of each stop.

New Old Stock and minty fresh, this Columbia was dazzling!


This super cool old Japanese rear changer is a new one to me. Can anyone direct me to a link for the name and manufacturer?

There were lots of cool bikes of all kinds on the ride, from the locally made Milwaukee Bruisers  to sweet vintage cruisers.  I also liked how some people had decorated their rides. 

Right on

Please drink responsibly and behave, HOOONNK!

Brooklynn and I stayed with the ride until about 9 pm, then we peeled off to get some dinner since neither of us had eaten since lunch. Not only was I hungry, but I had to get up at 5:30  am Sunday morning to do the Miller Lite Ride over the Hoan Bridge.  I did not want to oversleep and miss the first legal chance I had to ride over Milwaukee’s Golden Gate.  Still, I am curious how the rest of the ride went?  Any readers finish it? How late did the ride go?  Where was the last stop?

Lead ’em out Brooklynn!
Stay inside the lines

I asked the organizer of the TdF if he worried about liability leading a pub crawl, and he said he had the same fears I have about the Santa Rampage.  It seems a real shame that our society is so litigious that consenting adults can’t be assumed to be responsible for their own behavior. I’m not an attorney, but I doubt signing waivers would do me any good if some drunken santa got hurt and lawyered up.  Going after me, and maybe the City given my job, would be the first thing a smart attorney would do.

At this point, I am not planning on organizing another Santa Rampage.  I wonder if it would work if the tavern owners all offered a special for anyone in a santa suit, and santas just rode from one gin joint to the other on their own.  It wouldn’t have the same effect as a rolling peloton of Kris Kringle wannabes, but it might still work.

All along the clock tower.

The love cats headed to Silver City.

Any attorneys or tavern owners reading this have any advice? I’d hate to see the Rampage, such a fun event, disappear, but at this point, Santa will not be seen outside of the North Pole unless you stay up late and wait by the cookies Christmas Eve.

Arrival at Oscars on Pierce.

The parking lot next to Oscar's on Pierce.


About daveschlabowske

Cyclechic advocate from Milwaukee
This entry was posted in Advocacy, Rides and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Tour de Farce Redux

  1. Russell says:

    Here’s the only info I’ve found on that DNB rear derailleur –

    Be careful, or you’ll find yourself spending a good part of the day on that site.

  2. Jim Franzen says:

    Here are some shots from the Tour De Farce for those not on yahoo groups.

  3. Dan says:

    I did the 50-mile route for the Ride for the Arts, but it ended up being about 45. The route was nice, heading up most of the lakefront in Shorewood and Whitefish Bay and turning around at Concordia University. The one thing about the route I didn’t like was coming back south on Port Washington; the road was nice, but I hit nearly every red light. That was a bummer. Still, riding over the Hoan was well worth that.

  4. Barry Stuart says:

    I rode the 50-mile, well more like 45, but why quibble? As a ride marshal, I had only one service call for a flat just off the Hoan. The UPAF Ride was extremely orderly and the conditions on the Hoan were easier than many of the naysayers believed. Yes, the Hoan can be biked!

    • daveschlabowske says:

      Thanks, Russell showed me something similar. Could it be that the Japanese predated the French? It sounds like the DNB predated the Huret.

  5. Bill Sell says:

    I donated into the 25 mile Hoan, and found to my great happiness that it was easy to turn north and do it again, and then to turn south and go home via the Hoan (love the rhyme). Three timer. I hesitate to say it too loud or someone at UPAF will find a need to fix the “problem” for next year, if there is a next year. It was really nice that no one was rushing the last bicyclists, not at least where I was riding. Southside riders had a bit of ear and eye candy after leaving the Hoan: three belly dancers from Trillium, led by Jen Nolan, on the boulevard in front of the first oassis.
    The Hoan ride seemed to be on the verge of closing down as, approaching 9 a.m., I finally biked away. Sheriffs were over the top bossy, but, hey, we’re used to hearing and ignoring “orders” from noisy cars. Otherwise the Hoan was SO peaceful. Last time for me was November 1997 (legally).

  6. I met up with the ride as you left it, on it’s way to the old rip tide. From there we went to the Harbor room, then back to Burnhearts to end it, maybe 20-30 riders came for a night cap. Some of us closed Burnhearts, so you could say it went until 2.

    I empathize with the the liability worries, we did a weekly ride in Portland (zoobombing) that often involved intoxicated people. The understanding was, and literature stated ride at your own risk. And there was no defined organizer, more of a committee, so no one could really be held accountable. Though we did not organize destinations, that’s where the trick is.

    My understanding is that if someone does something reckless while drinking, the last bar that served them can be held accountable ( third-party liability ). I don’t think liability waivers would work anyway, too many show up after rides have started.

    I would love to see the rampage stay, I feel there is a core strong enough to keep it alive, even if it’s a bit ad-hoc.

    • daveschlabowske says:

      Hey Scott, that was me and my friend Brooklynn who told you to head to the old Rip Tide. Maybe we can get a local committee going to relieve me of some of the personal and professional liability and keep santas rampaging.

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