PPP’s newest rider & photographer/videographer Tim Wildgoose took part in the Pride Parade in Old Town last weekend. Here’s what he had to say about the event:
Last weekend, Portland Pedal Power Founder and Co-Owner Ken Wetherell and I went out with our custom Pyxis enclosures and joined the Portland Gay Yellow Pages float for the Pride Parade through Old Town Portland.
First worthy mention is that the turn out was amazing. The entire route was so dense with on-lookers and supporters I had no idea what to do with all the attention. Good thing Scott from PDXGYP gave us squirt guns. It was funny how surprised people were when they were squirted with water from little plastic guns, totally unexpected to get wet when its not coming from the skies in Portland. Our squirt guns definitely brought about a ton of smiles and made for amusing interactions with the crowd.
Ken’s wife and three kids also joined us for the day, and shortly after we started the parade, Ken’s younger son James said, “Dad, you said we were going TO a parade. You didn’t say we were going to be IN a parade!” They were good sports about it and everyone had a lot of fun. Being in the limelight in front of that many people was a good growing experience!
In hindsight I wish I had plugged in the mini speakers Jenn provided and set up a sweet dance mix. The GYP trucks kept a very turtle-like pace while they handed goodies to the hoards in attendance, which left Ken, the family, and I with about a 1/4 mile of space in the parade to entertain the crowd with our squirt guns and cheers and whatever else we could think of.
The trucks went slow for good reason – PDXGYP beat their parade distribution record by handing out 1450 Gay Yellow Pages books beating the previous record of 1300. In addition to the books, the GYP team handed out loaded squirt guns, frisbees and wrist bands to the crowd. The GYP team worked like crazy to keep up with the high demand for the freebies. The crowd was super engaged and everyone had a great time, cheering and applauding and showing super support for a great cause.
Scott of PDXGYP was happy having the PPP bikes as part of their promotional and branding presence. After the parade we parked one bike at each of PDXGYP’s two festival stands. We talked to attendees about the bikes and PPP’s mission and explained the symbiotic relationship with PDXGYP and our other partners. We also continued to surprise festival attendants with cheeky squirt gun shots from behind the Pyxis. You wouldn’t believe how many people thought it had started to rain!
The Portland Pedal Power team is looking forward to teaming up with PDXGYP again next year. We’re definitely going to kick it up a notch!