When Creativity Strikes: A Cycling Jersey Design
Designing this cycling jersey is among my favorite projects. No one asked me to do it – creativity just struck! And after spending a couple weeks scribbling on paper, drawing in Illustrator, and seeking feedback from my now husband, Jim, I revealed it to the Penns Valley Pedals & Pints organizer, Roy Rupert. He loved it and we spent the winter perfecting the jersey for a 2018 cycling season reveal.
How Penns Valley Pedals & Pints Rolls
At the end of the 2017 Penns Valley Pedals & Pints summer riding season, I had miraculously made all but two of the group road biking rides. The club had a saying that “it doesn’t rain in Millheim on Wednesday evenings” – and that summer it didn’t. The organizer, Roy Rupert, mapped a different 18-23 mile route each week to keep it exciting and expose riders to the true beauty of Penns Valley. Even though I lived in the area for a few years, there were several roads I had never been down or had wizzed by in a car so fast I couldn’t appreciate the view. And some kicked my butt so hard that the craft brew waiting for me at the end of the ride was so much more satisfying. So these rides that summer made a real impact on how I viewed this wonderful place I lived.
Each week, Roy and his brother Mark chalk the road with arrows for the route and strategically place orange and black signs in areas with high traffic warning drivers – and Amish buggies – of the potential to come up on a rider (or be passed by one). Pedals & Pints welcomes every type of rider from serious road bikers to those out for a leisurely roll. in 2019, the club hit a record of 60+ riders in a single night. And we all meet up at the pub to catch up, gripe about the hills (thanks Roy!), comment on the striking views and sunsets, and form new friendships.
The design came to me the fall following the 2017 season. For me, it represented everything the club was about – evening rides, babbling creeks, hilly terrain, safety in numbers, new friendships, the beauty of Penns Valley, and – of course – the beer reward at the end of the ride!
Roy decided to have a “reveal” of the design in April prior to the 2018 season at Elk Creek Cafe + Ale Works – our local pub who gives a beer chip to each cycler that donates $3 at the start of the ride. It turned out, the jersey spoke to the rest of the club in much the same way it did me. Though it was a personal reflection of my experience, it was truly representative of what the other riders loved about Wednesday night rides, as well. The logos added paid homage to the companies that donated time, services, products, etc. to help get the club going. Penns Valley Pedals and Pints has sold 90+ jerseys to date taking no profit themselves and donating $5 from each order to charity.
When Creativity Strikes
This is one of the projects I’m most proud of and am glad I spent the time and effort figuring out the details. So, when creativity strikes, don’t ignore it. Take a chance and work with others to make it the best it can be. Chances are, someone else will appreciate it too.
You can find out more about Penns Valley Pedals & Pints on their facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Penns-Valley-Pedals-Pints-Bike-Club-179697992414039/