So I went to the Manila Folding Bike Festival last June 23rd. The same one I’ve been hawking for a number of times in some blog entries past. Here’s what happened.
I didn’t fly back alone. Simon, a friend of mine, decided to hop in on the action as well. I took my Brompton and he lugged a CarryMe around.
We flew in during the dead hours of night, arriving in the Philippines early in the morning. After a couple hours rest or so, I headed over to meet Simon at his hotel. I swear, all the hotel staff were gawking as Simon unfolded the CarryMe. After another friend arrived, we all cycled the few kilometers to the venue at The Collective.
The turnout wasn’t so bad. People tended to arrive in batches. Of course since Folding Bike Pilipinas was part of the core planning committee, I did end up seeing a lot of my friends.
The Collective houses a lot of arty-vibe shops. Lots of pretty graffiti too. Quite inspiring.
Simon brought the most compact bike he had, a CarryMe. It took less than 30 minutes for someone to offer buying it from him though. That was not part of the plan! A hearty congratulations to Zaldy for purchasing it. It was fun to see everyone try out this tiny wheeled bike.
And some bikes weren’t part of the show at all. Like this Dahon Hon Solo that was brought in much too late to be a part of the judging. Too bad because it was really nicely done. I especially like the Surly flask.
Since we were at the venue pretty much the whole day, we were able to see a whole slew of events going on.
The Collective, as it’s name implies, actually houses a whole other bunch of eclectic stores.
Here is the bag shop Yadu where everything was on sale for half the price because it was Mr. Saulo’s birthday.
There was Hocus Bicycles and Screen Printing, where you can get your old bikes reconditioned or you can commission a new frame from bike builder Avelino Maldea.
Watch the short TV segment here. Another friend, Art, is featured on his daily commute with his folding bike to work.
What’s a bike show without the actual showing? Simon was a judge. He worked really hard under the sweltering heat.
As for the final results… two of the bikes that won were pimped out Birdy’s.
Right after the actual show, the whole venue was changed to host the Rock Stage of this year’s Fête de la Musique. That’s RadioActiveSagoProject on the stage. I originally planned to stay but after a day under the sun, I was super beat. We decided to find a place to eat instead.