Anne Mader, owner, The Bike Lane
Attendees networking at the first DRAFT: D.C.-region
On October 18, businesses, organizations, advocates and individuals passionate about bikes came together for the first DRAFT: Washington D.C.-region. PeopleForBikes started the meetups in Denver in 2015, and launched a nationwide series this fall using the DRAFT label. DRAFT events begin with announcements, which are followed by four, five-minute presentations by innovators in the bike industry and a couple hours of informal networking and socializing.
The D.C. event was hosted by New District Brewing in Arlington, Virginia, which is conveniently located between two of the region’s most popular bike commuting trails. The night began with announcements from attendees. DRAFT D.C. featured four fascinating speakers. Jenifer Joy Madden, a journalist, author and active living advocate spoke about the importance of cyclists being a part of the movement to get more people on bikes. Eric Keen, territory manager with Trek Bicycles, talked about why people are purchasing and riding e-bikes and how e-bikes are getting more people on bikes. Beth Fulton, VP of customer success at Clarabridge, a local software company, explained how they use trail building as a way to encourage teamwork and get employees out on mountain bikes. The final speaker was Katie Kelly, co-founder of Squij Kat, which makes fun (yet functional) products to celebrate cycling.
One of the best parts of DRAFT is the networking, talking and story sharing that takes place after the presentations. Attendees were so engaged with each other that organizers had to push people out the door when it was time to go. There are so many exciting companies and passionate people using bikes, and DRAFT is an opportunity to connect them to each other and to the larger cycling community in the D.C. area.
For more information, and to learn about hosting your own DRAFT meetup, click here.