Ride the Drive

Today the City of Madison celebrated it's active lifestyle by giving up the cars and opening it's streets up to the bikes. Continuing the commitment to becoming a more bike-friendly city, Ride the Drive is all about allowing the community to experience the city from a different perspective. Whether by bike, roller blades, stroller or foot, thousands of people came out to enjoy 6 miles of Madison streets which were closed to automobile traffic.

Our family got the pleasure of holding down the fort at the Saris Cycling Group tent in the Family Zone. Stephen, an employee of Saris, welcomed kids (and adults) into the booth for face painting and a coloring contest. I was given the task of designing the coloring contest, featuring Lance Armstrong, 7-time Tour de France winner, who made an appearance at the event. We were hoping that Lance would stop by the booth to pick the winner of the coloring contest (which unfortunately didn't happen).  Here's how the coloring sheet ended up looking:

Coloring contests are tough to design! Especially when I want to add lots of detail, I have to keep reminding myself to simplify - this is only a coloring sheet, after all.

I also got the opportunity to do the face painting. I love face painting! It's always fun hearing the ideas the kids have. There was only one request I couldn't handle: Spiderman. I know Spiderman wears a red and blue skin-tight suit and has big oval-esque eyes, but I really couldn't guarantee it would have a resemblance without having a picture to reference. Apparently peace signs are popular with the kids these days, and beagles. Or maybe it's because one little girl wanted a beagle, and then all the other kids who were waiting wanted one, too. Not sure, but I got to be quite the expert at drawing beagles by the end of the day. I also got to draw butterflies, lions, an alligator, hearts, an angel, ladybugs, a T-Rex and of course, bikes.

I even had a man request a handlebar mustache! That was fun...though I definitely prefer drawing on the smooth skin of a child than the bristly whiskers of an old man.  :)

Here is a recap of the day in photos:

1. Kiddos coloring
2. Lots of people out riding their bikes
3. Stella, earlier in the day
4. More coloring
5. The poor lion braved the 90 degree temps ALL DAY!
6. Picking out a CycleOps sticker
7. Hard at work
8. Stephen hanging up the masterpieces
9. Taking a break
10. That's me! Probably determining which color to use.
11. Did we break the record of 30,000 people?
12. There's the beagle that started the trend
13. There's Lance riding by!
14. Stella, later in the day - face paint and marker smeared EVERYWHERE!
15. Focusing...and another beagle.
16. Lion face

The day was so fun! The booth was hopping all day. Awesome, but unfortunately it meant our fam couldn't escape long enough to go for a ride. But I have to say, Stella was a trooper - she stuck it out for 5 whole hours, even missing her nap. But I think she had a blast. And after all that, I think she has a future as a face painter!

Hope you had a great weekend!