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View Full Version : Is the freedom plaza stop worth going to?



Emm
05-14-2015, 08:59 AM
Question--I am registered at the Crystal City pit stop, and also plan to stop by the Del Ray pit stop on my way there.

Is the Freedom Plaza pit stop also worth stopping by? Last year the reviews were meh, but my neighbor claims it's his favorite one. It's a mile out of my way to work, but still totally do-able. I'm just iffy based off of last year's reviews, although I know they may have been impacted by the awful weather.

jrenaut
05-14-2015, 09:02 AM
I think it's worth going. The Mayor might be there, and she's sure to give a really patronizing speech about her dedication to safe cycling infrastructure. From behind the podium where she'll speak, she'll be able to see the spot on PA Ave where I was hit by a cabbie making a u-turn. It's one of the blocks that, after all these years, still doesn't have anything but paint surrounding the cycletracks.

And the weather last year wasn't awful, it was invigorating.

Emm
05-14-2015, 09:18 AM
I think it's worth going. The Mayor might be there, and she's sure to give a really patronizing speech about her dedication to safe cycling infrastructure. From behind the podium where she'll speak, she'll be able to see the spot on PA Ave where I was hit by a cabbie making a u-turn. It's one of the blocks that, after all these years, still doesn't have anything but paint surrounding the cycletracks.

And the weather last year wasn't awful, it was invigorating.

That was the least motivating reply possible, especially since it'd be my first time on the PA cycletrack ;).

And I agree. Last year's weather was so awesome the people at the Rosslyn pit stop offered me 2-3 bags of swag just to get rid of it. I wish that'd happen again. I used that backpack all the time...until it got stolen by my mother, who is now proudly sporting her stolen Bike Arlington bag in Detroit.

Mikey
05-14-2015, 09:32 AM
The swag there is not as good as Rosslyn or even Crystal City. If you are really interested in tri-fold pamphlets extolling the benefits of tap water then I'd say go for it. If you want something of actual value I think you might be disappointed by freedom plaza.

jrenaut
05-14-2015, 09:34 AM
Freedom Plaza is THE stop in DC. Whether that makes a difference to you is personal preference. I'm not big on swag, though, so the lack thereof doesn't really bother me.

rcannon100
05-14-2015, 09:45 AM
The Best Stop will be Shirlington! YAY! Go Shirlington!

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-d4d4YWVywSE/VPO44qH77SI/AAAAAAAACeo/paURbceBo0U/s1600/old-lady-bicycle-wallpaper-for-2560x1920-332-26.jpg

vvill
05-14-2015, 10:12 AM
As jrenaut says, it's probably THE pitstop in DC. More people and publicity than the rest of them. More political too, obviously. A friend of mine (riding with me) was interviewed there for a TV station a couple of years ago.

Also agreed the swag isn't that great if that's what you're after. Rosslyn and Ballston are probably my overall favourites for a fun/swag mix. Georgetown by the water is small but worth a quick detour too for some different swag.

Steve O
05-14-2015, 10:23 AM
Rosslyn and Ballston are probably my overall favourites for a fun/swag mix.

Stop by Rosslyn to see my up-to-date collection of BTWD t-shirts---complete from 2002 through 2014 (and presumably 2015 orange). On display at whatever booth I'm staffing.

New and Improved since this photo from Ballston in 2013.

https://scontent-dfw.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xpa1/v/t1.0-9/941602_475111779224010_699686553_n.jpg?oh=d4fd80f6 5b2e753116cffc664e8ed9f3&oe=55C16C67

vvill
05-14-2015, 10:26 AM
Stop by Rosslyn to see my up-to-date collection of BTWD t-shirts---complete from 2002 through 2014 (and presumably 2015 orange). On display at whatever booth I'm staffing.

Nice!

I'm planning to be at the Bikenetic stop bright and early through most of the morning.

cvcalhoun
05-14-2015, 10:33 AM
Apparently, the DC public library will be at Freedom Plaza this year, giving out something. Last year, at the actual libraries, they gave out books. Might be worth checking out.

PotomacCyclist
05-14-2015, 11:17 AM
What do they have at Rosslyn? I've never stopped by the Rosslyn pit stop before.

83(b)
05-14-2015, 11:21 AM
Well, the people watching is quite good. And you can heckle AAA Mid-Atlantic at their table!

rcannon100
05-14-2015, 11:47 AM
What do they have at Rosslyn? I've never stopped by the Rosslyn pit stop before.

Last year they had lots and lots of mud. Oh, and water. And some slog.

https://farm3.staticflickr.com/2900/14015361490_0b82f36b9d.jpg

Tim Kelley
05-14-2015, 11:49 AM
What do they have at Rosslyn? I've never stopped by the Rosslyn pit stop before.

We got our shipment of swag from Trek/Bontrager in yesterday! It came in about 17 boxes...

PotomacCyclist
05-14-2015, 11:50 AM
You could hand AAA some of those green or orange bike pins.

Sort of like in a situation I saw many years ago at the old downtown Burger King. (I don't think the Burger King still exists and I don't really eat at burger places any more.) I was standing in line when the young woman in front of me climbed onto the counter and started shouting, "This restaurant is being shut down for cruelty to animals!" She repeated this over and over. The manager came out and helped an employee to get the woman safely back down to the floor. However, when a man stood up there as part of the protest, the manager yanked the guys ankle and caused him to come crashing down.

The police arrived and handcuffed the woman. (They did not beat her or treat her roughly. There were also a lot of witnesses around.) As the woman was lying there on the ground, a homeless guy (I assumed he was homeless because he had a scruffy large beard, disheveled clothing and rags and a very messy appearance) leaned over to her calmly and said, "Ma'am, can I offer you a hamburger?"

rcannon100
05-14-2015, 11:53 AM
We got our shipment of swag from Trek/Bontrager in yesterday! It came in about 17 boxes...

BA is, er, cough, um.... supporting the Shirlington stop too, right???????

Tim Kelley
05-14-2015, 11:55 AM
BA is, er, cough, um.... supporting the Shirlington stop too, right???????

Yes.

Emm
05-14-2015, 11:57 AM
We got our shipment of swag from Trek/Bontrager in yesterday! It came in about 17 boxes...

hmm, maybe I re-route and do del ray, crystal city, rosslyn to work (SW DC) since I am more focused on the swag side of things. If I take my road bike, this is do-able, esp if I just give up and admit I'll be 15-20 min late to work. If I leave home by 6:30 this is totally a possibility.

KLizotte
05-14-2015, 12:03 PM
A friend just sent me this:

-----Original Message-----
From: pressrelease-request@wmata-ealert.lists-wmata.com [mailto:pressrelease-request@wmata-ealert.lists-wmata.com (pressrelease-request@wmata-ealert.lists-wmata.com)] On Behalf Of Metro News
Sent: Thursday, May 14, 2015 11:33 AM
To: Metro News
Subject: Metro to support Bike to Work day with multiple "pitstop" events, free U-locks

Bike to Work Day is tomorrow -- a day when Metro joins Commuter Connections, the Washington Area Bicyclist Association and more than 13,000 commuters for a celebration of bicycling as a clean, fun and healthy way to get to work.

This year, Metro will host Bike to Work Day pit stops at Fort Totten, College Park and East Falls Church stations. Riders can stop by the pit stop during the morning at Fort Totten or East Falls Church, or during the evening commute at College Park-U of Md. for free t-shirts and other giveaways, maps, safety tips and a bus bike rack demonstration.

In addition, Metro Transit Police will be at the pitstops, along with King Street and Braddock Road stations, to distribute free U-locks to cyclists who register their bikes. To sign up, or for more information on these and other pit stops, visit biketoworkmetrodc.org.

For more information, please see the news release:
http://www.wmata.com/about_metro/news/PressReleaseDetail.cfm?ReleaseID=5925

lordofthemark
05-14-2015, 12:49 PM
As much as I love swag, since this will be my first multiple pit stop BTWD, and I will be my usual not fast self on my hybrid, I will stick to the three pit stops that are along my route - Shirlington, Crystal City (for the jersey) and Canal Park (where I am registered, and for the picture with the Secretary, of course) Rosslyn sounds great - maybe next year.

CaseyKane50
05-14-2015, 12:58 PM
hmm, maybe I re-route and do del ray, crystal city, rosslyn to work (SW DC) since I am more focused on the swag side of things. If I take my road bike, this is do-able, esp if I just give up and admit I'll be 15-20 min late to work. If I leave home by 6:30 this is totally a possibility.

You don't have to be late for work, just start earlier - the Del Ray pit stop opens at 6 am. :)

cvcalhoun
05-14-2015, 01:26 PM
You don't have to be late for work, just start earlier - the Del Ray pit stop opens at 6 am. :)

And yet again, I'm jealous of Virginia. The only stop in the Bethesda area that opens that early is Naval Support Activity Bethesda. And it requires a security screening, so I suspect that what I gained by going early would be offset by it taking a lot of time to get in and out.

mstone
05-14-2015, 01:36 PM
You don't have to be late for work, just start earlier - the Del Ray pit stop opens at 6 am. :)

I usually leave for work before 6am :(

PeteD
05-14-2015, 01:39 PM
Hrm, wonder how many I can ride thru tomorrow on my way to "work"...

Raymo853
05-14-2015, 01:44 PM
The swag there is not as good as Rosslyn or even Crystal City. If you are really interested in tri-fold pamphlets extolling the benefits of tap water then I'd say go for it. If you want something of actual value I think you might be disappointed by freedom plaza.

Ouch. How about I be sugary and say "all the stops will be a great since you will meet cool people and solidify your resolve to commute by bike more."

Raymo853
05-14-2015, 01:50 PM
You don't have to be late for work, just start earlier - the Del Ray pit stop opens at 6 am. :)

Hmm, you may get me to skip the Shirleton one and head there.

baiskeli
05-14-2015, 02:30 PM
The swag there is not as good as Rosslyn or even Crystal City. If you are really interested in tri-fold pamphlets extolling the benefits of tap water then I'd say go for it. If you want something of actual value I think you might be disappointed by freedom plaza.

I got an awesome squeeze water bottle at the Plaza once. And AAA sometimes has a booth there - it's fun to watch that unfold.

KWL
05-14-2015, 06:13 PM
I got an awesome squeeze water bottle at the Plaza once. And AAA sometimes has a booth there - it's fun to watch that unfold.I registered for a Metro bike pass there once. Remember those?

Steve O
05-14-2015, 06:41 PM
I registered for a Metro bike pass there once. Remember those?
I had one. I went to WMATA HQ to get mine.

baiskeli
05-14-2015, 06:43 PM
I registered for a Metro bike pass there once. Remember those?

I still have mine somewhere around the house. What an awful photo.

baiskeli
05-14-2015, 06:59 PM
If you come to Freedom Plaza you can see the announcement of the exciting news that our good friends at AAA Mid-Atlantic will offer roadside assistance for bikes (for full AAA members).* I'm presuming that's where the announcement will be. Maybe the spokesman will be there and not call someone who isn't pro-car "retarded" or a "ninny."** Or maybe he will! It should be entertaining either way.

*http://www.arlnow.com/2015/05/14/aaa-to-roll-out-local-roadside-bicycle-assistance/

**http://greatergreaterwashington.org/post/18573/shocking-rhetoric-from-john-townsend-and-aaa/

Mikey
05-14-2015, 09:18 PM
Which pit stop will have Cortland Malloy?

americancyclo
05-14-2015, 09:21 PM
Last year they had lots and lots of mud. Oh, and water. And some slog.

https://farm3.staticflickr.com/2900/14015361490_0b82f36b9d.jpg

That's "Shawns" not "slog"