I've been going to the Cascade Cycling Classic longer than almost any other race. I always have a fun time in Bend. This year was no exception.
There were so many things that contributed to a great week. Best find this year was Le Cakery, where you get to pick the flavor of your cupcake and the flavor of your frosting; it's a really good thing there's not a place like that around the corner from me the rest of the year! Thump Coffee was a great place to drink super good coffee (if I can tell a difference, it must be good!), catch up on email, watch the Tour, and people-watch the who's who of the Bend cycling community (thankfully I had a guide who recognized them; I did not, for the most part). The scenery around Bend of course is marvelous, and the level and amount of competition in the bike races prove that riders in the NW will race in the summertime if you give them what they want. And having Jadine and Mike share their honeymoon with about 600 other bike racers made this year's trip to Bend unique! :)
But the thing that made the week most special for me was people:
Cycling is such a small world and for the most part a close-knit, supportive community. It is fascinating to go to an event as big as Cascade and see how parts of your world are connected to each other in ways that don't involve you that you would never imagine. I stopped in to see a tandem friend at his bike shop in Bend and to thank him for advertising some other friends' used tandem on his email list. Totally coincidentally, a clothing line they rep was hanging on the wall next to the tandems in the shop.
So much better than Facebook.