The date was July 2 and the meet up time was scheduled for 5:30 p.m. at The Freedom Wall corner of Michigan and Ferry for the ever active Monday evening Slow Roll Buffalo along with creative hosts PANTHFRICA, Albright Knox Art Gallery, WNY Book Arts Center, and Hyatts All Things Creative.
Before the “Roll” began people were buzzing about engaged in the Freedom Wall mural, picking up complimentary blinking bike lights, interacting with the Albright Knox Art Gallery and PANTHFRICA tables for creative fun, before moving on to either make donations to the clothing drive table for Project Mona’s House or over to Betty Jean Grant’s table where she was energetically registering new voters.
The Slow Roll Squad in their bright orange t-shirts gathered near the wall to discuss all of the ins-outs and round-abouts of the route, as well as the rules of the road to make sure participants fully enjoyed the historic roll through parts of Buffalo’s east side without missing a beat. The pre-ride activity was musically energized by D.J. Lo Pro who caused many riders to bust their signature dance moves before the ride.
Local historian Eva Doyle blessed the riders with a little history and Freedom Wall artists John Baker and Edreys Wajed made final remarks (where Wajed acknowledged Jason Hall the Original Co-Founder of Slow Roll Detroit who is African American). The Buffalo Slow Roll Team then made sure everyone pulled off at 6:30 p.m. sharp, riding past the wall for a full 360-degree Mural view to kick off the fun filled 10 mile ride.
During the two route breaks, volunteers from the African Heritage Food Co-op traveled with the rollers on the trail with fruit and water to keep riders hydrated.
The Slow Roll Squad along with the BPD had the roads secured along the way as riders biked historic streets like Humboldt Parkway, Jefferson, Fillmore, Michigan, Utica, and crossing Broadway as well as taking on a few hills, wide turns and weaving through neighborhood streets passing the many supportive residents who were either waving from their porches, lawns and street corners on the path, cheering on the riders pedaling through the community.
The roll wrap up party ended back at the Freedom Wall and the fun continued until the sun went down. Now it its fourth season with over 95 rolls completed, navigating over 85,000 buffalo bikers safely through the streets of Buffalo.
Yet again Slow Roll Buffalo was a success and is hailed as one of the most epic Monday night experiences of connecting people and communities in the city thanks to the Buffalo chapter founders Anthony Caferro, Mike Butler and Seamus Gallivan. L.H.
*Mark Your Calendar for upcoming scheduled Slow Roll events in July: 7/ 14 Niagara Falls! Bike Stampede 5p.m. •7/16 Niagara Square 6:30p.m. •7/23 Colored Musicians Club 6:30 p.m. •7/28 Ride For Charity 1:00p.m. •7/30 Broadway Theatre 6:30p.m.
Go To www.slowrollbuffalo.org to register and Keep up with PANTHFRICA Albright-Knox Art Gallery, WNY Book Arts Center and Hyatts All Things Creative for their future collaborations and upcoming events
Photos by HappiSnaps