Bike Hutto plans Hippo Hunt for Nov. 14

Bike Hutto is hosting a Hippo Hunt on Nov. 14. Photo courtesy Bike Hutto.
Bike Hutto is hosting a Hippo Hunt on Nov. 14. Photo courtesy Bike Hutto.

Holy hippopotamus, bicyclists!

Bike Hutto, an advocacy group for bicycling in Hutto, will celebrate a century of the barrel-shaped mammals with its first ever Hippo Hunt on Nov. 14. The scavenger hunt will pit teams of four to six bicyclists against one another as they pedal to hippo statues throughout the city, collecting clues.

The event is a fund-raiser for Hutto Has Heart. Photo courtesy Bike Hutto.
The event is a fund-raiser for Hutto Has Heart. Photo courtesy Bike Hutto.

Check-in begins at 8 a.m. and the event starts at 9 a.m. at Creekside Park, 305 Orchard Way in Hutto. The first team to complete the scavenger hunt and make its way back to the park wins the Hippo Hunt trophy.

Hippo statues can be found all over Hutto. Photo courtesy Bike Hutto.
Hippo statues can be found all over Hutto. Photo courtesy Bike Hutto.

Cost is $15 a person, with a maximum of $60 per team. Each participant receives a T-shirt, swag bag and breakfast the morning of the event. Helmets are required, and cyclists must obey all road and trail rules and use the Cottonwood Creek Trail underpass to cross Highway 79.

Proceeds will benefit Hutto Has Heart, which provides emotional, financial, educational and spiritual support to Hutto community members.

To register go here.

AIDS Walk Austin set for Nov. 8

This year's AIDS Walk Austin is set for Nov. 8.
This year’s AIDS Walk Austin is set for Nov. 8. Photos courtesy AIDS Services of Austin.

Walk 2 miles, help people living with HIV and AIDS. That’s the idea behind next weekend’s AIDS Walk Austin.

The event, now in its 28th year, raises money to support education about and prevention of HIV and AIDS. Besides the walk, expect live music from hip hop duo Riders Against the Storm, food trucks and entertainment.

The event raises money for 10 local agencies.
The event raises money for 10 local agencies.

Proceeds will benefit 10 local HIV and AIDS advocacy organizations. Former NFL cornerback Wade Davis will lead the walk as the 2015 Honorary Chair, alongside guest emcee Chris Saldaña, anchor of KEYE-TV Morning News.

Registration and festivities start at 11 a.m., with opening ceremonies and the walk beginning at 1:30 p.m. at Republic Square Park, 422 Guadalupe Street. Participants can register as individuals or groups; a $20 donation is encouraged.

Participants are asked to make a $20 donation.
Participants are asked to make a $20 donation.

“Every contribution made at the walk touches a life, with 87 percent of each dollar going directly to services here in Austin,” Paul Scott, executive director of AIDS Services of Austin, said in a press release.

More than 1,000 walkers participated last year, raising more than $253,000 for agencies around Austin. For more information about the event go here.

High Five Events acquires Conley Sports – and some of Austin’s biggest races

Participants run in the 2015  Austin Marathon and Half Marathon in downtown Austin. Stephen Spillman for AMERICAN-STATESMAN
Participants run in the 2015 Austin Marathon and Half Marathon in downtown Austin. Stephen Spillman for AMERICAN-STATESMAN

The company that produces some of Austin’s biggest races, including the Austin Marathon and Half Marathon, is hanging up its running shorts – for now.

High Five Events, an event production company owned and operated by Dan Carroll, Stacy Keese and Jack Murray, this week acquired Conley Sports Productions from John and Stacey Conley. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

A spectator holds a sign during the 2015 Austin Marathon and Half Marathon. Stephen Spillman for AMERICAN-STATESMAN
A spectator holds a sign during the 2015 Austin Marathon and Half Marathon. Stephen Spillman for AMERICAN-STATESMAN

“We’re extremely excited,” Keese said. “We feel fortunate they’re entrusting us with their baby.”

Conley served as race director of the Austin Marathon and Half Marathon for 19 years, and spent 20 years working with the 3M Half Marathon. Combined, more than 20,000 runners participated in the races this year, which brought an estimated $25 million into the Austin economy in 2015.

Conley Sports Productions will still put on the events in 2016, with High Five Events standing in the wings. Runners shouldn’t notice any changes for now, both Conley and representatives from High Five Events say.

But adjustments, possibly in the form of course changes, may be coming down the road, said Keese, one of the co-owners of High Five Events. “We’re still working on that,” Stacy Keese says. “We have to get approval on ideas from the city.”

“In general, having fresh blood and a different perspective will allow things to change,” she said. “We want to keep it in the same tradition as Conleys, and we want to make participants and Austinites happy.”

High Five Events started with a single triathlon in 2003. Since then it has produced a slate of events, including the Austin American-Statesman Capitol 10,000, Lifetime Tri CapTex, Ironman 70.3 Austin, Livestrong Challenge, Rookie Tri and FloTrack Beer Mile World Championship.

The fitness community also knows Murray and Keese through their shop Jack & Adam’s Bicycles, which merged with Bicycle World in March. Murray has worked with Conley Sports on the marathon for 15 years, doing everything from loading water stop supplies to coordinating bicycle escorts for the lead runners.

Conley, a retired registered nurse, says he and his wife will take time off to consider opportunities before deciding what comes next.

“We haven’t given much thought to what is next other than we love this city and are committed to this city and want to have some sort of presence here doing what we love,” Conley said. “We’ll continue to be a force for good – that’s always been our mission and vision.”

He says he’ll organize a passing of the torch ceremony at this year’s marathon to mark the changing of the guard.

Texas School for the Deaf hosts 5K and Halloween fest this Saturday

The Spooky Skedaddle at the Texas School for the Deaf includes a 5K and 1K run, plus a Halloween festival.
The Spooky Skedaddle at the Texas School for the Deaf includes a 5K and 1K run, plus a Halloween festival.

It’s always more fun to run in a costume, don’t you think?

The Texas School for the Deaf Foundation will host its annual Spooky Skedaddle Heal Yeah 5K timed run, 1K Fun Run and Halloween Festival this Saturday.

The free event includes music, food trucks, trick or treating and festival games at the Texas School for the Deaf, 1102 South Congress Avenue.

Entry fee for the Heal Yeah 5K race is $35; entry fee for the Spooky Skedaddle 1K Fun Run is $3.

To register go here. The 5K starts at 9 a.m., followed by the 1K at 10:30 a.m.

The Halloween festival will include an obstacle course, bounce house, Twister, cake walk, food trailers, a costume parade, trick or treating, face painting, balloon darts and live music. Tickets can be purchased on site for all booths and games.

The Texas School for the Deaf is partnering with Dell Children’s Hospital and Heal Kenya to create a larger family friendly event. Proceeds will benefit the TSD Foundation and Heal Kenya. All hearing and deaf people, signers and non-signers, are invited.

Free parking is available at One Texas Center at the corner of Barton Springs Road and South First Street.

All Proceeds go to benefit Texas School for the Deaf Foundation and Heal Kenya. For more information go here. 

Austin BikeFest includes bike-through haunted house

Austin BikeFest is scheduled for Saturday at Govalle Park.
Austin BikeFest is scheduled for Saturday at Govalle Park.

Think you’ve got enough nerve to pedal through a haunted house?

Head to Govalle Park, 5200 Bolm Road, on Halloween to find out at the second annual Austin BikeFest, sponsored by Capital Metro.

The free event will feature bicycle games, a costume contest, a BikeTexas fashion show, a balance bike course for kids, bicycle polo, unicycle football and a chance to learn how to ride a bicycle and unicycle. You can even ride your bike through an obstacle course that includes haunted houses. Kids can trick or treat, and the Staylyns will provide live music.

The free event includes a bike-through haunted house.
The free event includes a bike-through haunted house.

The celebration runs from noon to 4 p.m.

Frankenbike will organize one of its bike swap meets, where you can buy, sell or trade all kinds of bicycle-themed items, and the Buffalo Soldiers, America’s first mountain bikers, will be on hand.

Sponsorship and volunteer opportunities are still available. For more information go here.

Consider riding your bike to the festival. The Southern Walnut Creek Trail ends at Govalle Park, or you can hop a Capital Metro bus. Routes 17 and 350 pass near the park. To plan your trip go here

BikeTexas, founded in 1991, is the statewide bicycle and pedestrian advocacy and education organization.

 

Austin BikeFest will include pedal-through haunted house

Austin BikeFest is scheduled for Saturday at Govalle Park.
Austin BikeFest is scheduled for Saturday at Govalle Park.

 

Think you’ve got enough nerve to pedal through a haunted house?

Head to Govalle Park, 5200 Bolm Road, on Halloween to find out at the second annual Austin BikeFest, sponsored by Capital Metro.

The free event will feature bicycle games, a costume contest, a BikeTexas fashion show, a balance bike course for kids, bicycle polo, unicycle football and a chance to learn how to ride a bicycle and unicycle. You can even ride your bike through an obstacle course that includes haunted houses. Kids can trick or treat, and the Staylyns will provide live music.

The festival will include trick or treating and a bike-through haunted house.
The festival will include trick or treating and a bike-through haunted house.

The celebration runs from noon to 4 p.m.

Frankenbike will organize one of its bike swap meets, where you can buy, sell or trade all kinds of bicycle-themed items, and the Buffalo Soldiers, America’s first mountain bikers, will be on hand.

Sponsorship and volunteer opportunities are still available. For more information go here.

Consider riding your bike to the festival. The Southern Walnut Creek Trail ends at Govalle Park, or you can hop a Capital Metro bus. Routes 17 and 350 pass near the park. To plan your trip go here.
BikeTexas, founded in 1991, is the statewide bicycle and pedestrian advocacy and education organization.

Join me at the Run by the Creek on Nov. 8

Runners can choose from a 5K or 10K. Photo by Pam LeBlanc
Runners can choose from a 5K or 10K. Photo by Pam LeBlanc

The Run by the Creek holds a special place in my heart.

I won my age group in 2013!
I won my age group in 2013!

The race, which follows Creek Road outside of Dripping Springs, marks the first running event where I actually won my age group.

Yes, it was a tiny age group. I don’t care. I treasure my carved wooden medal and always will.

The run is mostly flat, with some small rolling hills in the middle and an uphill finish. It crosses a creek, passes lots of gorgeous farmland, and makes you want to moo at the cows in pastures you pass. (At least that’s what it did for me.)

I missed the race last year, but am heading back on Nov. 8 to try to reclaim my moment of glory. You should come.

Participants can choose from a 5K or 10K. I’m planning on the longer version.

Registration is $45 for the 10K or $35 for the 5K. The race starts at 8 a.m. at 195 Roger Hanks Parkway in Dripping Springs.

Packet pickup is Nov. 6 at Rogue Running, 410 Pressler Street, and Nov. 7 at Pioneer Bank Dripping Springs. Race day registration is available from 6:30 to 7:45 a.m.

For more information or to register go here.

The Run by the Creek is set for Nov. 7 in Dripping Springs. Photo by Pam LeBlanc
The Run by the Creek is set for Nov. 8 in Dripping Springs. Photo by Pam LeBlanc

‘Reel Rock 10’ features short films about climbing

Images from the Dawn Wall, January 2015, shot by Brett Lowell of Big UP Productions in Yosemite National Park, California.
Images from the Dawn Wall, January 2015, shot by Brett Lowell of Big UP Productions in Yosemite National Park, California.

 

Think of Reel Rock 10 as the local climbing community’s answer to the Austin Film Festival.

The traveling show features premieres of short films about the best climbing action of the year, and it’s stopping in Austin. Catch it at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Stanley’s Farmhouse Pizza, 13187 Fitzhugh Road.

Fitz Traverse Alex Honnold Tommy Caldwell ph Austin Siadak

The local showing is part of a tour that takes Reel Rock 10 to more than 250 locations around the world.

This year’s films – “A Line Across the Sky,” “Dawn Wall,” “Showdown at Horseshoe Hell,” and “High and Mighty” – tell stories about climbers Tommy Caldwell, Kevin Jorgeson, Alex Honnold and Daniel Woods. A tribute to the late Dean Potter is also part of the lineup.

Tickets are $10 online here.

Upslope Brewing Company is a local sponsor.

Armadillo Classic bike ride returns to Liberty Hill on Saturday

The Armadillo Classic returns to Liberty Hill on Saturday, rain or shine. Photo courtesy Bike Austin
The Armadillo Classic returns to Liberty Hill on Saturday, rain or shine. Photo courtesy Bike Austin

Rolling hills, rest stops stocked with pickles, fruit and sandwiches, and scenery that’ll make the grouchiest armadillo smile are on tap this Saturday when the Armadillo Hill Country Classic returns to Liberty Hill.

The ride, a fund-raiser for Bike Austin, offers distance options of 11, 20, 39, 51, 68 and 103 miles through the Hill Country and Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge.

“The Armadillo is one of Bike Austin’s major fund-raisers and your support is truly appreciated,” said Mercedes Feris, executive director of Bike Austin, formerly Austin Cycling Association.

We’re just hoping much-needed rains don’t interfere too much. Today’s KVUE weather forecast shows a 70 percent chance of rain Saturday, although Feris says a party is planned rain or shine.

The fully-supported ride begins at Liberty Hill Elementary School and rest stops are spaced an average of 14 miles apart. Registration includes a post-ride lunch and bike rodeo. The event is open to cyclists of all ages and abilities. Participants get a T-shirt, route maps and lunch. All cyclists must wear helmets.

Gates open at 6:30 a.m. and the ride starts at 8 a.m. Cyclists will be staged 10 minutes apart, according to route distance. Food service begins at 10:30 a.m.

Entry fee is $45 for Bike Austin members or $60 for non-members ($20 for ages 16 and under) on race day.

Bike Austin provides cycling advocacy, education and support for people who ride. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Bike Austin Education Fund, which pays for bicycle education classes.

For more information go here.

If you’ve already registered, packet pickup is scheduled for 4-7 p.m. Thursday at Nelo’s Cycles, 8108 Mesa Drive; noon to 7 p.m. Friday at Bicycle Sport Shop, 517 S. Lamar Boulevard; and 6:30-8:30 a.m. Saturday at Liberty Hill Elementary School, 1400 Loop 332 in Liberty Hill.

Route maps below …

103-mile route
103-mile route
68-mile route
68-mile route
51-mile route
51-mile route
39-mile route
39-mile route
20-mile route
20-mile route
11-mile route
11-mile route

Dash through the veggies at Harvest Hustle 5K

Johnson's Backyard Garden will host its annual Harvest Hustle 5K this Saturday at Garfield Farm. Photo courtesy Johnson's Backyard Garden.
Johnson’s Backyard Garden will host its annual Harvest Hustle 5K this Saturday at Garfield Farm. Photo courtesy Johnson’s Backyard Garden.

 

Welcome the belated arrival of fall with a dash through fields of organic vegetables at the Johnson’s Backyard Garden annual fall potluck and 5K Harvest Hustle on Saturday.

Gates to Garfield Farm, just east of the airport at 4008 River Road in Cedar Creek, will open at 2 p.m. The Harvest Hustle 5K starts at 3 p.m., followed by Kids 1-Mile Fun Run at 3:30 p.m. The courses wind through a 200-acre vegetable farm along the Colorado River, so if you get too tired to finish you can always stop and munch an organic carrot along the way.

Rogue Running is sponsoring the race.

Music by the Bottom Dollar String Band starts at 3:30 p.m. and a potluck meal begins at 6 p.m. Guests are encouraged to bring a dish to share with their fellow locavores and farm-lovers. Those who bring a dish get a discount on their entrance ticket.

There will be a monster sand pile, fields to explore and arts and crafts for children.

Tickets are available here. Proceeds will help support the local bands performing at the event and help fund Johnson’s Backyard Garden recycle tire playground.

The event is BYOB.