Ghisallo Bicycle Film Festival is a series of films and videos where bicycles play a supporting character within the larger human interest stories being told. Through production, the festival became an almanac of stories from the global community, including special selections from our local communities in Austin and San Antonio, for people to see unique films, be inspired, and discover more about the people, places, organizations, and dreams that are featured.
We had planned to host the Ghisallo Bicycle Film Festival at the Austin Beer Garden Brewing Company (ABGB) on May 2, 2020. Due to COVID-19, we adjusted our programming for online viewing in the interest of public health.
Trick or Treat on the Trail is our annual, multi-generational, safe and fun Halloween event. With the support of St. David’s Foundation, the Austin Parks Foundation, our community partners and our volunteers, we transform a section of the Boggy Creek Trail into a spooky forest where kids can Trick or Treat at 20 different stations, show off their costumes on a Strut your Stuff Stage and have a Monster Mash Dance Party all the while staying safe and exploring the park.
In 2019, we had about 600-800 people attend decked out in Halloween costumes and distributed over 11,000 pieces of candy. With COVID-19 constraints in 2020, Ghisallo staff and 40 volunteers delivered 1,200 Halloween Party Packs as Candy Couriers (bike messengers) to kids all over East Austin, all by bike!
Each pack included Halloween candy, pedestrian and bicycle safety materials such as a reflective backpack, flyers, coloring books, and activity books from Ghisallo and TxDOT, COVID-19 safety information from Austin Public Health, and last but not least a toothbrush and toothpaste set from St. David’s Foundation so kids can eat the candy but avoid the cavities.
As a part of the Austin Beer Garden and Brewery’s Hell Yes Project, the Holiday Bike Builds give businesses, groups, and individuals the chance to come together and build a bike for a deserving kid. The Holiday Bike Builds take place at the ABGB so that participants can eat, drink and chat while helping us replace bikes in our program fleets by sponsoring and assembling one or more bikes with our staff. In 2019, groups joined us in building 30 Woom bikes to support our program fleet. In 2020, Ghisallo staff built 57 youth bicycles donated by Guardian Bikes, which we then donated to graduates of our BikeStart program at Langford Elementary School as well as families at the Austin Women’s Shelter and Safe Alliance.
Ghisallo teamed up with Austin Parks & Recreation staff at Dittmar Recreation Center, South Austin Senior Activity Center, and Conley-Guerrero to deliver holiday cheer cards to some of the Golden Rollers in our senior trike program as well as their larger older adult and senior community. Ghisallo staff distributed the cards by bike to seniors in the surrounding neighborhoods of the senior centers, as well as included them in the meal delivery pick-ups in tandem with the Meals on Wheels program.
Throughout the Fall and Spring of 2019, we hosted Bike to Work Wednesdays at Texas Coffee Traders to celebrate people riding to work. Cyclists on their regular commutes to work stop by for coffee, breakfast bites, and morning chats. We also provide information on local cycling groups, upcoming events, safety tips, and Ghisallo programs. With shelter-in-place orders during COVID-19, we adapted our “Bike to Work Wednesdays” to “We Bike Wednesdays.” Every Wednesday in Spring 2020, we encouraged people to participate by biking on Wednesday with prize incentives, self-guided challenges, inspiring videos, and photo posts.