It was the jazz-loving beats of 1950s San Francisco. Then it was the raw talent of a few fearless kids that brought skateboarding to life in 1970s Venice Beach. Now it’s the rain-soaked cyclists of Portland.
The bike scene in the Pacific Northwest is a movement all its own and Tim Jacks, one of our resident photographers and videographers at Coates Kokes, has traveled far (on two wheels of course) to join.
One week after he graduated college, Tim and a couple friends packed up their lives in Chicago and cycled 4,700 miles to LA and back, interviewing and inspiring cancer patients along the way. They compiled the video footage from the trip into an uplifting web series called “Ride the Battle.”
While back home in the Midwest, he couldn’t get the idea of the Portland biking community out of his head. So he called up his aunt and uncle and two weeks later he was living with them in SE Woodstock. Now he happily calls the Grant Park neighborhood home. Maybe you’ve even seen him – he’s a regular at the Rose & Thistle pub and no matter the temperature outside, Tim’s usually in shorts.
“Being from Chicago, I’m not scared of the Portland weather,” he explains.
After landing on the West Coast, it didn’t take him long to find his tribe of loyal cyclists. “Once I met my roommate, who works for a bicycle delivery service, I just started meeting people like crazy,” he said. “That’s when I realized that there’s a huge biking community here.”
He consistently partakes in the city’s Thursday Night Ride (TNR) and his calendar is full of biking events throughout the year, including his personal favorites, Pedalpalooza and the World Naked Bike Ride.
And now there’s another event that he absolutely won’t be missing this year. Tim’s newest short film called “Keep Going,” which features his beloved Portland biking community, has been accepted into the Filmed by Bike Festival on May 7. His work is nominated for Best Local Film and is in consideration for seven other festivals as well.
“The city of Portland is a wonderful place to ride a bike,” said Tim. “Whatever your skill level, you can feel safe and free on two wheels. This film was made in honor of the city and the bikes we ride.”
In addition, Tim emphasizes biking’s importance in creating a more sustainable future, which fits well with the culture at Coates Kokes. With clients focused on promoting everything from renewable energy to composting, Tim’s green and black fixie is more than welcome in the office.
“The Portland mentality is heavily focused on bringing awareness to reducing human impact on the environment,” said Tim. “I bike everywhere, so my carbon footprint is really low.”
Around here, that’s definitely something worth riding in the rain for.
The Filmed by Bike Festival is taking place May 6-8 at the Hollywood Theatre. Keep Going will screen at 6 pm on Saturday, May 7. You can buy tickets here: http://filmedbybike.org/fest-schedule/buy-tickets/#buy