I have seen many a Facebook and other post about how rough 2016 was. Yep a lot of 2016 kinda sucked but let's be honest we all had some really good times this year too. Here are 10 of my highlights from Beer & Bike tours this year.
1. We had our busiest year yet! With hundreds of guests joining us on single and multi day tours I feel really fortunate that this dream we had over beers in Kobe, Japan is thriving and spreading the fun of cycling and the love of craft beer.
2. Beer & Bike went to Belgium twice this year! If you have not been on our Belgium adventures or gone cycling there on your own I strongly recommend doing it in 2017. The beer is amazing with flavor, culture and tradition. The cycling is noting short of amazing and the friends you meet along the way are friends for life.
3. Repeat guests that have become great friends. A special thanks to Kate, David, Megan, Judy, Damian, Jen, Dennis and so many more. Our business is built through referral and repeat customers and I cannot thank you enough for keeping me from having to get a real job!
4. The magnificent Breweries we stop at on our tours. From our day tour stops at Horse & Dragon, Funkwerks, Snowbank, Odell, New Belgium, Equinox, Boulder Beer and so many more to the wonderful little finds on Multi day tours like Delores River Brewing, Prearis and Gruut in Belgium. I cannot wait to see what spots we discover in 2017.
5. Collabratiton...Colabrawhat? This was the term that Jes from Leisurely Pedaling coined when we started to work together to cross promote Fort Collins as a cycling destination. Sharing a booth at the Colorado Bike Expo in May I got to know and really appreciate how her business works. A further bit of Collabratition was had when I spent a week traveling Belgium with guides and owners of DuVine, Velo Classic, Beercycling, and Pure Adventures. Working with others and learning what they do well was awesome. I hope to do much more of this going forward. Thank you Marco! The next trip is on me.
6. Visit Fort Collins - The crew of Lindsey, Autumn, Katy and Andrew at Visit Fort Collins has helped spread the word about our business and allowed us to have some amazing experiences with travel writers and authors from the US, Germany, and Japan.
7. Our crew of guides really should be number 1 on this list. Without the help of Adam, Jenna, Alex, Nick, Blythe, Seth, Chris, Natalie, Katy and Ryan(I did not forget you this time), we would not be able to do what we do and your experiences would not be the same. Each of these wonderful folk brought something special to Beer & Bike and I cannot thank them enough.
8. A special thanks to Troubadour Maltings for letting us be a part of their journey. The Grain to Glass rides are highlight of my summer. Sharing the story of local craft and connecting the our beer from the sowing of the seed to the sipping on something special is what makes Fort Collins great and our small business and collaborative culture so unique and exciting to be a part of. Thank you Zwei Brewing, Horse & Dragon, Funkwerks and 1933 for being a part of this.
9. Connecting the dots of friends around the world while sipping a beer at Boulder Beer. So fun that Mike's kids had our friend as a teacher in Singapore! The world is a small wonderful place if you let it be!
10. My wife and children(Suzy and Leopold). AKA the board of directors for constantly pushing me to work harder and create new things while balancing the important things like family and adventure.
It is funny because I could go on and on about how much fun this year has been. Instead let's get together on a bike ride in 2017 and create new memories and see what sort of adventures we will have. I predict that it is going to be incredible!
Cheers - Bob