Keep it weird, Portland. In some places, the worst day of the year is one that people shove to the back of their minds. They want to hunker down and then forget. In Oregon, we celebrate it! The “Worst Day of the Year Winter Bike Ride” commemorates two horrible “weather is frightful” days and makes it into one of the Best Days to experience our region.
It Was the Worst of Times…
While the vines enjoy their winter slumber, Oregon wine country is far from sleepy. This is a great time to visit wineries and sample the best the region has to offer. And if you’re thirsty for something to get your blood flowing, you might want to enjoy the Worst Day.
The coldest day in Oregon history occurred on February 8, 1933: residents bundled up against -54° temps. That same day, 63 years later, we saw our wettest day with 26 inches of rain in just four days. So, naturally, Oregon organizes an outdoor event on or around that date! In 2001, 200 hardy folks showed up for a chilly bike ride. Ten years later, 3000 cyclists (or masochists?) turned out.
The Worst Day of the Year Bike Ride has taken on life of its own. There’s biking, of course, but you can enjoy costume contests, breakfast, lunch, awesome snacks and beverages (bikers can treat themselves to everything from cocoa and cookies to cider and fries to tea and chips with salsa), family, urban, and challenge routes, and plenty of fans to cheer you on.
This year, the event is held on February 11; courses close at 3:00pm. When you hop off your bike, make sure to try Oregon wines and sample some delectable local food. You’ve earned it (even if you didn’t ride! Cheering is thirsty work).
Keep it awesome, Portland!