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A bike / map geek with a gadget obsession and a high-viz fetish. by Vannevar Bush       about       /       murals       /       Pgh-DC bike maps new

Friday, July 5, 2013

Braddock Community Cafe Bike Breakfast

7/5/13 39m
Started very early, met S at the Bastille at 0615 and underway soon thereafter.

Rode around the northside on the river and there was a tremendous amount of trash and debris on the concrete, really looked like a tornado or a disaster scene. I guess that's what the morning after the July 4th fireworks looks like, but I was amazed at how much trash people dropped and left behind.

Stopped at the outer field at Point State Park to check the progress on the EnviroMural by MLK.

It's been a while since we had breakfast at the Braddock Community Cafe so we set our course that way. It's really a very easy ride from downtown now; bike trail through Sandcastle and the Waterfront, depart the trail at the south exit from the Waterfront, watch the drain grates on 837, ride across the Rankin Bridge, and a short ride down Braddock Avenue.

Rolling in to Braddock we saw a new mural, still a work in progress, by Anthony Purcell. There's an InstaGram photo of the mural at an earlier point.

This was a mural we hadn't seen before:

We were sorry to see a "BSOD" where we expected to see a hospital mural by Karen Bognar Khan. In some ways, her mural was the last hospital in Braddock.

The breakfast sandwiches were outstanding - locally sourced, organic, much healthier than my usual habits. We departed Braddock and joined the GAP southeast-bound, and reversed at the Phantom's Revenge. Departed the trail in Homestead for the Blue Bonnet Bakery, totally awesome, and after an immediate snack we had some pastries to bring to our meeting.

Coming back across the Waterfront Mall-In-The-Moat™ we encountered six or seven cyclists who'd lost track of the trail and were milling about in a holding pattern. We took them down to the Mitchell Seafood Market and set them on their way. One of them was riding a Worksman Urban Commuter Cruiser, first time I've ever seen a Worksman bike outside of an airplane hangar. It looked really nice.

We stopped in Uptown to meet James Simon, a remarkable local artist, in order to get some info about his murals and public art works. On a shelf he has a series of dog figures, but the faces are of him and his friends. Pretty cool. It was a treat to get to spend an hour with him, he was very generous with his time. We were pleased to hear that his "Welcome to Troy Hill" sculpture will probably be unveiled soon.

We rode up into the Hill District to Bedford and Erin Streets to find a mural we'd been tipped to by our friend Stu. Don't know much about it yet, but notably it includes the old Civic Arena.

Back in Point State Park, the majority of the trash and debris was picked up. The EnviroMural was gone, and it was really disappointing to see the sand sculpture of Lewis and Clark being demolished, probably only 30 hours after it was finished. I don't know why they didn't let people see it and enjoy it for a week or so, it seems like a rather futile effort and investment.

Coming back across to the North Side, this was a nice view of downtown and the flowers and the fountain:

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