The Connection Between Women, Bikes, and the Community – Denver She Devils

DenverSpeax was created at a time when I didn’t have a job, barely knew anyone, and had zero sense of the Denver community. We had just moved here from Michigan, and I hadn’t the first clue in where to meet people, or even if I did, how to become friends with them. Honestly, the website has proven to be a key tool in diving directly into the community, head first – taking it for everything it has to offer. By doing so, I’ve connected with the bike community, and in turn, made ridiculously awesome friendships. This is where the Denver She Devils come in to play: they will prove to be the missing link in my connection between biking and the Denver Community.

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Image courtesy of the Denver She Devils Facebook Page. Make sure to click on the picture to visit, and of course, like ’em!

The Denver She Devils formed one day out of the blue; experiencing some anguish brought on by, well, life, Mia decided she wanted to go for a bike ride… but just with the ladies. Altogether, the women along decided that this shouldn’t be a ride based upon shitty circumstance, but moreso an often recreated celebration for the love of riding as well as the women-friendly, communal environment the more-frequent rides could provide.

I’m not sure if anyone has noticed, but bike racing in Denver is not only extremely popular, but also pretty male-dominated. While I’m not a hater on the guys – biking should be open to everyone – I must say, it can be pretty intimidating to a lady in the bike scene. Especially those who feel inadequate in their riding abilities, equipment, image, etc. The Denver She Devils connects women with biking in a way that provides support to overcome those inadequacies, or feelings of low self confidence; they have created a supportive environment that truly provides little to no excuse for women to not get up on that bike, and give ‘er a whirl. This is the support that Mia provided for me during my first race, which to me is of inestimable worth.

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Team She Devils, ready to represent Denver in Minneapolis this upcoming September 2013 in the Babes in Bikeland race. Click the picture to be taken to their Facebook page (where this picture came from! Thanks, gals), and of course, like ’em!

Furthering their love for the community, the She Devils put together a team of four ladies to compete in largest female/transgender alleycat race in the country, taking place this September 14th, 2013 in Minneapolis – Babes in Bikeland. Rookies and pros alike comprise the team of 4, consisting of Annelise, Ashley, Mia, and Danielle; each contributes a unique experience and skill to the team, making them well-equipped to represent our amazing city, Denver, in such a large race. By supporting our Denver She Devil team, we support the better integration of women into the racing scene, as well as our city’s love of community and riding. To learn more about the team, check out their bio’s from their official website. Or, you could just come to Eden (located at 3090 Downing Street in Denver) this Saturday, August 10th, at 4 pm MST.

The fundraising event being held at Eden will include auctions, other give-aways, dancing, and a full cash/credit bar. We need to make sure that the team has the funds, proper equipment and attire, among many other things to represent our great city in Minneapolis. Bring your supportive A – Game and get ready to get down with Team She Devils and many from the bike community (and beyond) this Saturday. For additional information, click here to be taken to the public Facebook event.

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Credit: Yelp.com for the outside shot of Eden. Click on the pic to be taken to their yelp info.

If you’re unable to attend the Fundraising Event this Saturday, no worries – opportunity for donation is located at the bottom of the home page on the Denver She Devils‘ website.

Ultimately, getting involved in the community, and furthermore, with riding and racing can be a little scary. Will I be accepted? I’m not that good. How will I keep up? Can I do this? The Denver She Devils, as well as other bike organizations, are quick to help, putting minds at ease to such fears of riding shortcomings. Their love of riding as well as their hope and support for everyone else’s involvement with the fun, Denver bike community makes the Denver She Devils an incredible organization. They’re not only fun to be around, but inspiring to women in the community. They provide that missing link between the two that is apparent in every aspect of the organization.

Support and join our Denver She Devils – I can promise you a positive experience.

Experiencing the Colorado Rapids – MLS Denver

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Having a brew at Three Lions before catching the bus to the game. Click on this photo to be taken to the Three Lions Official Website! Pictured: (left to right) Shawna Jones, Kirsten Ebey, and Kat Wood. Credit: Steven Mercer, July 2013

 

For the 4th of July, our good friend Mitchell urged us to see a Colorado Rapids MLS game – it would totally be the way to go to celebrate the holiday. Being a fan of sports in general, we said, “Hey, why not?!” Last Thursday, we watched the Colorado Rapids take on the New York Red Bulls at Dick Sporting Goods Park. Afterwards, we were treated to the sounds of Denver native emcees, Flobots, and a spectacular fireworks show outside of the stadium – all of which included in the price of our game tickets. Obviously, Mitchell had it right – definitely the best way to celebrate the holiday with friends. 

The 6 of us who went bought tickets online not only for the game (roughly $30 including fees & tax), but also a bus ride ($10) to, and from, the game (drinking and driving isn’t cool – be responsible). We bought our game tickets through The Rapids website, or Ticketing Central, or TicketFly (there are numerous places to purchase – pick one!). As for the bus ride to and from the game, we purchased these through Centennial 38 (C38). When purchasing the game tickets, just remember which credit card you used online to pay with them, and they will scan that same card at the entrance in order to print your tickets for you. Regarding the bus tickets, make sure you print out a copy to bring with you – this is your bus pass. 

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Check out Centennial 38 to reserve your seat on the bus by clicking on this photo! Pictured (left to right): Steven Mercer, Mitchell Blystone, Kirsten Ebey, Kat Wood. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, July 2013

Now, let’s talk about the bus ride, because this is an experience all in itself. We all decided to ride our bikes from our apartment complex to Three Lions on Colfax, and catch the bus ride from there to the game at 7 pm. Of course, we stopped to get a drink before bus time, and were ready to rock at 7 pm. When boarding the bus, you are welcomed with friendly faces, and beer – how awesome is that? Sheets with chants are on nearly every seat, and shouted sporadically on the way to and from the game. The organizers are not only passionate about the Rapids, but also about the fans having a great experience with Denver’s beloved soccer team. There’s absolutely no reason why you should not purchase a bus pass if going to the game – parking at Dick’s can be a shit show, as you will wait nearly an hour to leave depending on where you end up getting a parking spot. Better not to worry about it, or your alcohol intake vs. driving abilities, and just hop on the bus with your friends!

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Colorado Rapids fans cheering their favorite soccer team on through the end of the game. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, July 2013

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Shot from the south bleachers after scoring the 2nd goal of the night. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, July 2013

Once we arrived, the stadium was packed with people of all ages, including families and friends interested in ringing in America’s independence together. Plenty of Concession stands are available with the coolest staff, only caring about your experience and getting your concessions to you quickly; they serve everything from beer-itas, to hot dogs, to healthy chicken sandwiches, to pizza. Expect stadium prices, but cash and credit are both accepted. 

There wasn’t a moment that the 6 of us, as well as the other thousands of fans, were not invested in this intense, fast-paced game – each of us kept the pride alive while cheering for the Colorado Rapids. There wasn’t a time when spurts of rejoice, booing, or clapping couldn’t be heard, making it evident that Denver truly cares about their talented, and hard-working team. The support lasted the entirety of the game. Maybe not as important, but I was also impressed when “the wave” made a consecutive 8-lap appearance around the stadium. What a blast – it’s so cool to be a part of a soccer community that is so positive, inclusive, and awesome. The Rapids played an amazing game, defeating the New York Red Bulls 2 to 0 – way to go, guys! 

I can’t wait to go back; better get a jersey, or a “kit”, first just to ensure that everyone knows who I’m rooting for. As I heard multiple times before, during, and after the game, “I BLEED BURGUNDY!” DenverSpeax has totally jumped on that band wagon.