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Mon, Jun 12

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Cleveland

Slow Roll Week 6: Skidmark Community Motorcycle Garage

We start this week outside one of the more interesting ventures on the city's east side.

Slow Roll Week 6: Skidmark Community Motorcycle Garage
Slow Roll Week 6: Skidmark Community Motorcycle Garage

Time & Location

Jun 12, 2023, 7:00 PM

Cleveland, 4806 Hamilton Ave, Cleveland, OH 44114, USA

About the event

Skidmark Garage is a 10,000 sq. ft community motorcycle garage where people with motorcycles can rent space to work on their machines. With the rental fee comes access to the garage's collection of tools, and the combined wisdom of all the people who gather there. It's a shared space for knowledge, camaraderie and inclusion. On the second floor, above Skidmark, is Motogo Cleveland, a collection of educational programs that aims to "teach kids to solve problems through motorcycles" with an emphasis on serving communities of color, women and the LGBTQ community, along with people of modest means.

Both share the same motto: All are welcome who welcome all.

We've been on parallel paths with Skidmark and Motogo for years in ways that are too complicated to get into here, but suffice to say this is a collaboration we've been itching to put together for a long time. Though it seems at first glance that the only thing remotely similar between Slow Roll and Skidmark is that we both ride on two wheels, the roots go deeper than that and the community spirit is compatible and sympathetic. Skidmark hosted our first ever Slow Roll Winter Prom way back in 2017; before that we bonded with Skidmark owner Brian Schaffran when we were vying against each other for a $30,000 grand prize in a social enterprise accelerator program back when we were trying to open St. Clair Bikeworks, a short-lived (and much missed) east side community bike shop (neither we nor Skidmark won the prize, but we remained good pals).

On Monday, we're happy to show you inside Skidmark and Motogo. Just a peek to satisfy your curiosity, perhaps, but there will be reps on hand from both institutions to answer your questions about what goes on inside this wonderful place. And since we know a lot of Slow Rollers also ride motorcycles, maybe you'll find a new place to hang out or contribute your expertise.

We will gather beginning at 6 PM outside of Skidmark Garage at the intersection of Hamilton Avenue and E. 49th Street. Look for our canopy on the sidewalk. There is a small parking lot on site, but please do not attempt to use it, and it's 1) small and 2) for the use of the members of the garage. There is plentiful on-street parking in the area, however. As it's an industrial area that can feel deserted even during "busy" times, you shouldn't have any problems finding a place to park on Monday.

Check in with us at our booth, and if you're interested in taking a look at the garage, feel free to mosey in and say hi. We were hoping to bring you an afterparty this week, but as the event came together very quickly, we encountered a time wall that we couldn't get around, so assuming you folks enjoy this experience, we'll start planning for a similar event next year with a full street party after the ride.

We are five weeks into the 2023 season and the early returns have been phenomenal. We've hit 400+ riders almost every week, which has made us start workshopping solutions to even bigger rides. It's a good kind of problem to have, but it's still something we think about and brainstorm over. Just a reminder that sometimes we need to briefly stop the ride for various reasons; sometimes it's to regroup and bring the whole group back together, sometimes it's related to safety, and sometimes we are pointing our a special area of interest and have a guest speaker near the front (which is a good place to be if you don't want to miss this aspect). We won't always be able to communicate to you exactly why we're stopped and when we'll be rolling again, however, so we hope you'll trust that we have things under control and that we'll start moving again in a few minutes.

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