Bikes and Beers Across America was developed to raise funds and awareness for a charitable cause, while tying in a love of cycling and craft beer.
Written by Hank Whitin, BBAM Founder
The Cause chosen for 2017 is the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, MS is a disease that affects more than 400,000 Americans and 2.3 million worldwide. The thought behind my team's cross country trek started out like many great ideas — a late night bar conversation scratched out on cocktail napkins. I realized I didn’t want to turn 50, 25 lbs overweight and drunk in my bar, so I decided to bike across the country again.
As a kid, I used to ride MS 50 mile and 100 mile charity rides in honor of my grandmother, Libby, who had the disease from the age of 30 to 86. Having ridden from Seattle, WA to Westport, MA back in 1990, the idea of doing another ride transformed from an “I’d really like to do this again” lament to a “why not” reality.
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Our trek will begin on Sunday, May 21, 2017 in Astoria, Oregon. Why there you ask? Well, Astoria is a stone's throw from where Lewis and Clark finished their expedition in 1805. We couldn’t think of a better place to set out on our adventure!
After landing in Astoria we plan to bike to Portland where we'll start our social networking process of connecting with craft breweries and brew pubs along the route. This journey is all about inclusion, so other cyclists and craft beer lovers are invited to join for various legs of the ride!
Our goal is to complete the journey in about six weeks time at the front door of Pour Judgement Bar and Grill in Newport, RI (www.pourjudgementnewport.com), the bar I started in 2006 with my friend Kevin Sullivan.
Of course are journey will be subjected to the bike and beer gods, but here is the general route we plan to stick to-
Astoria to Portland, Oregon
Across the Columbia River to Washougal, Washington
Hug the Washington state side of the river to Idaho
In Idaho drop a bit to the south to Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming
From Wyoming cross into South Dakota then into Iowa
Iowa into Illinois through Chicago under the Great Lakes
Cross into Ohio straight through to north western Pennsylvania into New York State
Cross the Hudson River into western Massachusetts
In central Massachusetts drop south into Rhode Island
- Go across the Sakonnet River Bridge onto Aquidneck Island heading south to Pour Judgement, 32 Broadway Newport.
Keep up to date with all of our latest developments, as well as our journey itself by liking and following us on the social media platform of your choice.
Meet The Team
Founder of BBAM & Rider
Hank is the founder of BBAM and an owner of Pour Judgement Bar and Grill in Newport RI. He's turning 50 this summer and thought this trip was a good way to celebrate.
Mandy survived being the only female out of 7 while riding cross country in 1990. Her creative sense of adventure outweighs her rational judgment since she's decided to ride again. She now lives in Providence RI with her husband and child prodigies.
Julianne is an alternative holistic practitioner. Her practice focuses on personal transformation through energy balancing and coaching. Julianne has dedicated much of her life to supporting people on their healing journey. She is an expert guide and continually facilitates with kindness and wisdom to direct each person toward fulfillment.
“Homeless” Richard Williams
Richard has turned being off the grid into an art form. He is often seen around Newport walking dogs while sporting expensive sailing gear and perfectly coiffed hair. He will remain in Newport during the adventure to care for Hank's dogs, Dixie Blue and Frank Walker.
Not only does Joe have a passion for cycling, but this Newport Native enjoys fighting crime and listening to Glen Campbell.
Steve is another proud alum of the 1990s Seattle-to-Washington tour. Steve has absorbed the admonition against bringing knives to gunfights and is riding a road bike this time. And bringing his own tent. Steve lives in southern California with his wife.
Britton is representing the West Coast for 2017. He is a native Californian, having sported many different somewhat contemporary hairstyles over the years. Along with Hank Whitin and Mandy Syers he made the Trek from Seattle, WA to Westport, MA in 1990.
John began work as a professional in the field of energy therapy, coaching, and meditation in 2001. John’s study of the science of spirituality and subtle energy spans over twenty-five years. John is committed to excellence and authenticity. His choice to work in the business of transformation rose from a desire to make a difference in people’s lives.
Lawson is a professional driver and has a strong resemblance to James Franklin, brother of Benjamin. His preferred method of travel is jumping box cars, but for this adventure a regular vehicle will have to do.
Gary is a partner in Pour Judgement. No one can spin a tale quite like Gare Bear! This will be his first trip through the Rockies.
Support Our Cause
The National Multiple Sclerosis Society exists because there are people with MS. Our vision is a world free of MS. Everything we do is focused so that people affected by MS can live their best lives as we stop MS in its tracks, restore what has been lost and end MS forever.
We are more than an organization. We are a movement. United in our collective power to do something about MS now and end this disease forever. The gathering place for people with MS, their family and loved ones, healthcare providers, volunteers, donors, fundraisers, advocates, community leaders and all those that seek a world free of MS. A place to connect and take action. In order to change the world, we mobilize all possible human and financial resources to achieve results.
32 Broadway, Newport, RI 02840