Apparently, there’s a day to celebrate everything — and fat bikes are one in that list. This year, there is an actual event called Global Fat Bike Day, and it is scheduled to be celebrated on Dec. 2. But what, exactly, does this mean? And who in the world invented it? And perhaps the biggest question? Why?
Before we worry about the hows and whys of these questions, though, let us set our calendars to celebrate such an event here in Anchorage. Bread and Brew Alaska and Chain Reaction Cycles is organizing a Global Fat Bike Day celebration with the largest “unorginazed Fat-Bike Group Ride” it can assemble. The event will be held 6-10 p.m., starting and ending at Bread and Brew, 1450 E. Tudor Road. There will be a short and long loop marked for all levels of riders. Ride your loop out and back to Bread and Brew for drinks and dinner.
To make the entire chilly evening worthwhile, Chain Reaction Cycles folks will be collecting new toys for ‘’Toys for Tots,’’ so bring a treat or two for someone less fortunate. Or drop of your donation at Chain Reaction Cycles before the event.
So, back to the hows and whys of such an odd, but deserving, celebration.
According to fatbike.com, which was similarly intrigued by the event’s origins last year, the celebration began in the United Kingdom, set in motion by two guys called Si Matthews and Ritchie Salt.
Both have been riding fat bikes since the early 2000s, and the event became a “thing” in 2012, when Matthews decided to create an exact date and time for the event, just to see what would happen. Here’s what he told fatbike.com last November:
“I don’t recall the exact eureka moment, but at some point I found myself looking at a globe whilst hatching a plan to put on a global gathering, a celebration of old mountain bikes. A simple idea, a set time and date, get on your bike and ride. You could do this with friends, alone, whatever. Just ride, take a photo and post it up on MTBR. In was very inclusive. It didn’t have to be an epic ride, you just had to be on a bike doing something at a set time as that time rolled around the world’s time zones. It was great. Nowhere as big as GFBD has become, but a start. The first guys out in New Zealand and OZ, watching it spread as 8 p.m. rolled around the world’s timezones.”
So there you have it. Because two guys across the pond thought of a small idea that went viral, fat-bikers here in Alaska — perhaps the birthplace of the fat-biking movement — now have a fun event to put on their calendars.
For questions about the event, contact Chain Reaction Cycles at 336-0383.
— Coast staff