If cyclocross, mud and art sound like a perfect combination of elements to you then you should have be in Providence with me last weekend for the Divine Providence Cyclocross Fest.
I spent the first day sitting in my borrowed sales booth located on the infield across from the beer garden with the rain and wind generated from hurricane Joaquin pounding the tent. It had been raining steady for days and the course was like a slip-and-slide on the Fourth of July.
But I’m happy to report the Single Speed and Madison races went on as planned while the event promoters continued to fight the elements and build a world class UCI race course for professionals like Jeremy Powers, Katie Compton and Katerina Nash. (I was in total fan geek mode because I got to have dinner with them on Saturday night. I tired to be cool.)
From my vantage point, tucked away in the back of my tent, I could see a constant stream of mud covered riders and bikes caked in thick, sticky ooze—and it was freaking awesome. As if the course here at Roger Williams Park in downtown Providence wasn’t tough enough the mud made it absolutely miserable. Perfect cyclocross conditions.
The run-ups were near impossible, the corners unmanageable and the fly-overs looked like a near death experience. Absolute perfection.
As the weekend unfolded and the weather conditions continued to improve the race fans came pouring in. Between sales of my Cycling Art Prints I was able to grab and occasional beer, did I say I was across from the beer tent, and watch some of the races. I also saw the famed 75 year old Julie Lockhart, she’s still riding strong. Amazing.
My tent neighbor Jane owns an awesome sports apparel company called C2 and between the two of us we were able to take turns keeping an eye on business and watching races. Check out her great gear at BuyC2.com
Most of the weekend for me was about meeting new people and selling a few Cycling Art Prints. Happy to say my Artist Edition of the Providence Cross Fest sold out and made the weekend profitable.
Overall the atmosphere at the event was very upbeat in spite of the weather and people were having a great time. Hey, drinking beer, watching bike races and buying cycling art sounds perfect to me, and it was.