By Robyn Elliott, Owner of Bicycle Tours of Atlanta
Photography by Aura Exposures Photography and Bicycle Tours of Atlanta
As a native Atlantan and an avid cyclist, running Bicycle Tours of Atlanta has been a labor of love and has given me the chance to share the story of my hometown with both locals and visitors from around the globe. As we gear up for a new season of Cultural Art Bicycle Tours, I am especially excited to tell the stories of some of our great local artists.
You’re probably familiar with many of the wonderful, world class museums, galleries and venues in Atlanta including The Fabulous Fox Theatre and Woodruff Arts Center, for example. But just beneath the surface of the highly commercial institutions of Atlanta is something even more dynamic and compelling. It’s what I call “The Heartbeat of the Atlanta Art Scene” and it started with many grassroot movements.
The landscape of our local art scene has transformed tremendously over the last decade. Without the passion and unstoppable dedication of a select group of people to make art accessible and continue to support emerging artists, Bicycle Tours of Atlanta would not have the opportunity to showcase art the way we do.
For every piece of art, there is a story. It doesn’t matter if it is a masterpiece hanging in a museum or an unrecognizable symbol spray-painted on the side of an abandoned building or a six inch miniature fully-trimmed door installed in a surprising spot along a sidewalk in a busy business district or along the Beltline known as #TinyDoorsATL. And for every artist, there is history to explore. These are some of their stories of inspiration and contribution.[foogallery id=”2211″]
Last two images (Photo credit to Anthony Gary from “Soul Food Cypher”)
WONDERROOT and Chris Appleton
It’s impossible for me to talk about the recent growth of the local Atlanta art scene without sharing the story of three artistic visionaries. Friends and artists/activists Chris Appleton, Whit Wisebraun, and Alex West founded WonderRoot in 2004 with a vision of re-imaging Atlanta through the arts. It went from connecting artists with communities to being the first organization in Atlanta to provide professional development mentoring programs to emerging artists and affordable working studios to recent art school graduates.
In 2008, and after four years of running community art programs, WonderRoot secured a 4,000 square foot house in historic Reynoldstown. Here, they provide affordable access to artists’ studios in a variety of disciplines and offer a wide array of programming for artists and the community. The mission of WonderRoot is to unite artists and communities to inspire positive social change and they have been successful in that endeavor.
The reality of WonderRoot is catching up with the vision that started back in 2004. With Appleton and West still at the helm, its growth has been substantial, and in 2017, they will move to the WonderRoot Center for Arts and Social Change, a 54,000 square foot building. The public space will include a black box theater, ceramics studio, darkroom, digital media lab, recording studio, printmaking studio and community library.
In a recent conversation with Chris Appleton, I asked if he could have imagined that WonderRoot would be moving to an old Atlanta high school. He responded with a smile, “I certainly could have imagined some version of what we’re building; we did imagine that. What I could not have imagined is the way by which it’s happening. The broad base of support from the public and private sectors, the grassroots and institutional support to make it happen – I could not have anticipated that.”
The supportive nature of WonderRoot has given rise to a new generation of local artists who are creating many of the visual experiences we offer on our tours. In addition, they are bringing art to places and people that had limited or no access to it in the past. To help support and learn more about WonderRoot, go to www.wonderroot.org.
SOUL FOOD CYPHER & Alex Acosta
Soul Food Cypher (SFC) is just one example of the power of WonderRoot. Alex Acosta had returned to Atlanta after studying photojournalism in Florida in 2009. With his background in photography and desire to positively impact at-risk youth, he began teaching photography at a local community center. Alex soon realized the kids weren’t necessarily as interested in photography as he had thought, but he found that he could connect with them through their shared respect and admiration of hip-hop and freestyle rap. Upon this realization, Acosta remembered WonderRoot and its basement venue. A few months later, SFC held its first cypher and with the help of some of his closest friends: Wahid, Mark Montgomery, Majorica Murphy, and Eric Ludgood joining, Soul Food Cypher as an organization was born.
In this context, the word “cypher” is used to describe the people circling around a performer as he/she raps and/or dances. For SFC, the cypher is a community – a place where lyricist, under the guidance of meter and rhyme, share stories, exchange knowledge and speak freely.
As the organization grew, its mission crystallized. SFC works to utilize the power of speech to transform the lives of individuals and communities by showcasing the positive aspects of rap through events, membership programs and community outreach. In addition, they look to solidify the art of freestyling as a genuine aesthetic to a wider artistic community and carry this rich tradition to the next generation.
SFC has been recognized by the city of Atlanta for their community outreach and were recently awarded ArtPlace America’s Creative Placemaking grant which enables them to expand their mission from the basement of WonderRoot to a series of pop-up cypher events in the Old Fourth Ward. SFC was contacted by the Boys and Girls Club of America to facilitate a special cypher session with youth during their 2016 Annual Keystone Conference in Dallas, Texas.
During our 2016 cultural arts season, we will be routing tours to include Soul Food Cypher experiences. Learn more at www.soulfoodcypher.com.[foogallery id=”2190″]
A LONG STANDING ARTISTIC TRADITION –
THE KROG TUNNEL
As I lead my bike tours out of Inman Park and into Cabbagetown, I often tell everyone that we are going to “the other side of the tracks.” In the late 1800s and up until the late 1970s, that phrase aptly described how the railroad tracks divided the social classes and economic opportunities of these two communities separated by railroad tracks and rail yard.
The railroad underpass connecting these two communities is known as the Krog Tunnel and it’s filled with spray-painted or graffiti style artwork. For locals, this is an iconic stretch of underground that has been one of the most culturally relevant sites in Atlanta’s local art scene. Krog Tunnel is a place where many artists first established themselves in the local art scene. Artists are free to paint here at any time without fear of harassment from the authorities. We often have guests ask, “Is it safe in here?” To the typical non-urbanite, it may appear to be a place where gangs spray the walls to claim turf — but that is not the case. For the urban dweller, this tunnel is considered one of the jewels of the city.
There is a code and hierarchy among the graffiti culture in the tunnel that spills out to the streets of Atlanta. It boils down to respect for each other’s artistic expression. How long art stays on the wall before getting painted over is ultimately an unspoken collaboration of give and take among these artists. This explains why in Atlanta, murals are rarely tagged by graffiti.
Many graffiti artists have labored long hours in Krog Tunnel, perfecting their craft, exploring their range, and ultimately emerging from the tunnel on a path to commercial success. Michi Meko is one of these artists.
MICHI MEKO –
FROM THE TUNNEL TO THE GALLERY
Michi doesn’t remember a time in his life when he did not want to be an artist. In pursuit of his dream, Michi left Alabama and arrived in Atlanta in 1999 at the age of 23: “When I discovered the tunnel, there were all these beautiful pieces inside, and at the end, there was this silver piece. I said, ‘Man, I want to learn more writing from this guy.’”
To clarify the lingo, writing is the act of painting letters (representing your street name) across a space, the tag is the finished piece of work, and the writer is the artist.
“I had no concept of what I was doing, so I sought this person out. He was willing to help me. He said I could hang with them. For months, I would just watch — they would not let me paint. One day, they said, ‘OK, you’re ready.’”
Along with writing in the Krog Tunnel, Michi also pursued creative avenues to get his name out to the right people, sometimes sneaking into galleries and hanging his own work on the walls or attending other artist’s shows and giving away his art on cardboard: “Anything guerilla, I was down with. I just wanted to be an artist and wanted people to know who I was.” Michi’s creative marketing tactics paid off. Michi is now an established artist and describes himself as a multidisciplinary artist, drawing influence from both the rural southern culture and contemporary urban subcultures. Michi is represented by Alan Avery Art Company, a prominent gallery in the Southeast. In the well-established tradition of giving back to emerging artists, Michi volunteer teaches at WonderRoot through their mentoring program. Visit michimeko.com to learn more about Michi Meko’s work.[foogallery id=”2193″]
ART ON THE BELTLINE
Art on the Atlanta BeltLine is the City of Atlanta’s largest temporary public art exhibition and a testament to the Atlanta BeltLine as a living, breathing entity that is more than just trees, trails and rails. Showcasing the work of hundreds of visual artists, performers, and musicians along the Atlanta BeltLine corridor, the exhibition is a powerful conduit for everyone in the Atlanta region to gather, connect and experience something vibrant and dynamic.
Over the last few years, Art on the Beltline has given us many stories to share. During the 2015 Art on the Beltline installations, a compelling and beautiful sculpture was erected under the Freedom Parkway Bridge. The sculptor’s name is William Massey, III.
William Massey, III –
The Art of Reconciliation
After spending two years in college on a “traditional” career path, Massey made the decision to pursue his passion for artistic expression. William says, “I was miserably doodling my way through business classes. I decided I would rather focus on being happy instead of wealthy.” William finds his happiness and inspiration by using his talents to positively impact others. Aside from sculpting, he teaches art at a transition center, facilitates “art as healing” at a cancer center, shares creative-release with recuperative care patients, and in conjunction with Church on the Street (CotS), a grassroots organization, he cultivates “Art on the Street” to homeless adults.
William Massey III has been a featured artist with Art on the Beltline for three seasons and his latest piece, a sculpture entitled The Art of Reconciliation, is a true reflection of his spirit and commitment to the communities he serves. William shared the idea with the community to seek their participation. They began by collecting junk discarded on the streets of Atlanta. William assembled sections of the sculpture and welcomed people of CotS as well as other communities to vividly paint their story and personality onto the debris. Over 200 individuals representing a variety of races, ages, backgrounds, and social statuses participated in the project. “We had people who were homeless, students, housewives, high-level executive business owners, and everything in between working on this project side by side,” William said with a huge smile on his face… and rightly so.
The sculpture is visually stunning and all of my guests, regardless of where they’re from, are moved to silence and contemplation after hearing the story behind it. When my tour stops to view this piece, we see from a distance that it’s the face of a man. As we walk closer to it, however, we see that it’s made completely of thrown-away objects – shoes, typewriters, toys, pieces of furniture, essentially trash found on the streets.
This sculpture represents a local Atlantan named Tony, who for years was homeless, living under the bridges of Atlanta. I always encourage my guests to view the sculpture from the back, unpainted side to get a better look at the “trash” it’s made from. The back symbolizes Tony’s life while living on the streets as someone who was perceived as having no value to society. The beautifully painted front represents Tony’s life after members of the community offered hope in reconciling his past and helped him move toward a healthy future. In Tony’s words, “this piece is a metaphor of all of our brokenness and need for wholeness, not so much a call-to-action to just ‘help the less-fortunate.’” We can all relate to Tony: feeling discarded, hurt, and devalued, and we all seek worth, completeness and wholeness.
and Monica Campana
Living Walls is the Grandfather of the Mural Art Scene in Atlanta and was founded by two friends who had taken their art to the streets: Monica Campana and Blacki Miggliozzi. Both understood the power of art in public spaces and co-founded Living Walls in 2009.
In the first year of Living Walls, 18 mural artists arrived in Atlanta to paint the walls Monica and Blacki had secured for the project. The second year, a two-week long conference was incorporated in conjunction with painting murals. Workshops and events were planned that were designed to create dialogue about the impact street art has in the urban environment.
In 2011, Blacki stepped down to pursue other creative projects and in 2012 Monica established the organization’s non-profit status. Living Walls has become a significant Atlanta art organization and has engaged approximately 150 mural artists, over 800 volunteers and is credited with installing 115 beautiful and thought-provoking murals in Atlanta public spaces.
At the close of the 2014 season, Monica decided to take a planned hiatus and go to the capital of mural art cities, Philadelphia. Her goal was to learn all she could about how to run a successful street art program. “The Philadelphia Mural Art Program has over 50 full-time employees and has a multi-million dollar budget to create art on the streets. We did so much with so little over the years, and Philly has been doing this for 30 years,” Campana said.
When I spoke with her about the future of Living Walls, she assured me we would be seeing Living Walls again. “We’re exploring how to create something sustainable for the artists and the organization. We are assembling a new board, designing a strategic plan and exploring corporate sponsorship,” Campana said. Living Walls murals are still a significant part of the art we share on our tours and we are looking forward to its return. Learn more at livingwallsatl.com.
FORWARD WARRIOR and Peter Ferrari
Forward Warrior is a live painting performance event that brings together artists and communities to create large scale murals. It began in 2011 by Atlanta-born Peter Ferrari, and about 12 other artistic friends. For the first two years, artists would gather at Melvin Gallery in the Old Fourth Ward along the Beltline for a performance art party. Friends invited friends to come out for the experience and word of this event spread through social media. “It was more about entertainment and giving people an opportunity to connect personally with the artists they saw on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook and actually seeing them do what they do and then giving them an opportunity to buy art at an affordable price,” Ferrari said.
By 2013, Forward Warrior was invited by the Castleberry Hill community to paint in their neighborhood. Peter and other mural artists painted three walls during this daylong event. Search Forward Warrior III Castleberry Hill on Vimeo to watch a mesmerizing video on how an urban masterpiece of this nature is created.
In 2014, the Cabbagetown community invited Forward Warrior to paint murals along a 250 yard retaining wall at the border of the neighborhood and the CSX property line. For years, the Cabbagetown community dealt with the graffiti tagging by painting the wall gray every few weeks. Since it was well known that murals would typically be respected by graffiti writers and not tagged, the residents hoped that by installing murals on these walls, the graffiti writers would move to another area. The experiment worked.
As Forward Warrior grows, Peter is exploring ways to continue to give the participants full artistic freedom while at the same time seeking sponsorship and donor opportunities to provide even modest compensation for their contributions. A crowdsourcing initiative is being planned, but Peter also said, “there’s a big part that I appreciate as an artist in just giving people an opportunity to paint what they want, and get out their truth, their message and their aesthetic to the public.”
When asked about the name, Ferrari said, “Years ago, a friend of mine and I would just say it to each other when we were getting down about things or going through hell. We were like ‘Forward Warrior, just keep going.’” And Peter has kept going. When he is not planning for Forward Warrior, he is busy in the mentoring program at WonderRoot, painting commission projects and most recently was on an Edgar Wright movie set painting a custom mural for a scene. You can read more about Peter and Forward Warrior at #peterferrariart or on Facebook.[foogallery id=”2196″]
When Street Art Saves Your Life
With a city filled with mural artists, one must wonder how Joe Dreher, aka JOEKINGATL became one of the most active street artists in Atlanta in less than two years. Once you know his story, it’s clear that the instinct to survive and his love of family, have been the driving forces behind his fast climb to success.
Joe had practiced architecture for 20 years and after closing his practice due to the recession and struggling to find work, he found himself in a deep depression. When his son’s high school teacher suggested they participate as volunteers with Living Walls as a way to reconnect with his son Alex, his wife, Treasure, didn’t give either one of them a choice. She made sure they were on a Living Walls site supporting the artists and it was there Alex found what he referred to as “his people.” This experience for Joe and Alex started a course of healing through art.
They continued to volunteer with other art organizations while growing their relationship. In 2014, when Alex was 15, they were given the opportunity to create murals together in Cabbagetown. When Joe speaks of this time in his life, it’s very powerful: “In a way, Street Art saved my life. It got me out of a depression, it gave me back my relationship with my son and family, connected me to an art community and the city I love. So for me, I really feel indebted to it.”
Joe’s work is social: open and accessible. Most recently, the High Museum of Art commissioned Joe to paint a mural along Ponce de Leon to promote the Basquiat exhibit. A signature element of Joe’s work is the three-pronged crown. Basquiat also used a crown, and Joe’s symbolism was inspired by Basquiat’s use, which was showing significance of others and in street art as a way to admire other artists’ works. “I use the crown as a way to elevate people and celebrate the significance of everyone,” Dreher said. There is a pyramid shaped pile of crowns painted at the base of the Basquiat mural as a homage to Keith Haring’s work; A Pile of Crowns which itself is an homage to Basquiat after his death. This gives visitors at the mural a chance to snap a photo with a crown on their head. This interactive experience is often part of Joe’s work.
Our Cultural Arts Bicycle Tour explores a number of Joe’s murals. When possible, we visit him on site at installations around town. To learn more about Joe’s work go to joekingatl.com.[foogallery id=”2198″]
DOWNTOWN PLAYERS CLUB
and Kris Pilcher
As I lead tours into the Broad Street Art District in Atlanta, I’m sure some of my guests must think I made a wrong turn and that we’re lost. This area was once part of the epicenter of our great southern city, but after years of neglect and northern development toward Midtown, it’s now known for its inhabitants living on the street and searching for their next meal. Although guests may enter this area with some skepticism, they roll away feeling moved and inspired.
Our guests are fascinated as I share the stories of the visionaries who have created the local arts establishments including Downtown Players Club, Mammal Gallery, Murmur, Eyedrum, and the Broad Street Visitors Center. These venues bring change through cultural expression in a community that would otherwise never experience a play, visit an art gallery or enjoy live music. This area is positioned to be one of the most vibrant art scenes in Atlanta over the next decade.
The Downtown Players Club, founded and run by Kris Pilcher and Elizabeth Jarrett, is a community-based performance arts center in the heart of Downtown Atlanta. Not only do Kris and Elizabeth spend their days working in this community, they live above the center’s entrance.
Recently, I asked Kris how he knew he was making a difference in this community. Kris shared a story about an experience he had with a local artist who approached him one evening in an effort to sell his drawings. Kris encouraged the artist to approach the crowd who was there for an event, and he sold several of his pieces. The next day, one of the neighbors asked Kris if he had met his friend, referring to the artist. He continued to tell Kris how he knew the artist. The two of them had been in jail together and he told his cellmate that he was too talented to be out here messing around on the streets and that when he got out, he should go to Broad Street, that there were people there who could show him how to be successful with his art. Pilcher said, “I was blown away. If that’s the kind of difference I’m making down here, then it’s all worth it.”
Each of these amazing organizations in this emerging art district is seeking sponsorship and funding options. “Our organization hopes to eventually become an approachable institution with the ability to support artists of all skill levels, races and genders,” Pilcher said. You can learn more about Downtown Players Club and the other organizations on Facebook.
MARTY MARTIN OF FRED MARTIN WELDING
When Marty Martin was a youngster, he spent summers at his uncle’s welding shop on Edgewood Avenue in the Old Fourth Ward. Marty’s grandfather, Fred Sr., had opened the welding company in 1938 on Edgewood near Courtland Avenue and moved the company to its current location in 1949.
Throughout high school, Marty worked the torch and honed his welding skills during summer breaks. Marty’s Uncle Fred, Jr., who didn’t have children, always encouraged Marty to plan a future in welding, in hopes that one day he could pass down the family business. Marty had a different plan. “I didn’t want any part of welding and since I was only here in the summers, I thought it was always 98 degrees on Edgewood Avenue,” Martin said.
Marty became interested in music in high school and was a talented trumpet player by the time he arrived at college. After majoring in music at the Berklee College of Music, he set off across the US to play music. “I was just gonna be a rock star trumpet player. And that was my plan, until… I got engaged,” Martin said. About this time, Uncle Fred was ready to sell the business and the timing was just right. He made his 28 year old nephew an offer and Marty decided “steady work” was the best way to start his new life with his lovely bride, Kelly.
Marty continued his music career, but kept the gigs close to home while he and Kelly raised their family and ran the welding business. He became a member of the Ruby Red’s Band in 1986, a well-established Atlanta band that had been playing the hot spots of Atlanta since 1966 and is now on the “A list” for the corporate events circuit.
Marty’s welding business recently shifted to creating more artistic pieces like tables, benches, light fixtures, signs and artful bike racks. Martin explained, “Designers and architects working on small commercial buildings and restaurants are looking for innovative and beautifully designed solutions. These projects are perfect for the talented team of welders we now have.”
It is inspiring to see Marty’s artistic welding projects around our community and it provides a great opportunity to explore welding as an art form. It’s also great to know you can catch Marty playing trumpet with the Ruby Red’s Band during brunch every Sunday at Watershed’s in Midtown, Atlanta. The Ruby Red’s Band is known for great New Orleans Jazz and Blues with a contemporary spin. To learn more about Marty’s adventures, just google The Ruby Red’s Band and Fred Martin Welding.
FIRE IN THE FOURTH
The Old Fourth Ward (O4W) is fast becoming an area known for its cultural happenings and artistic habitants. More evidence of this growth, is an event that is returning for its second year to the streets of the O4W on Saturday, May 21, 2016. The creative individuals behind this unique festival are Jennifer Ohme, Executive Director of the Old Fourth Ward Business Association and Matt Ruppert, the owner of Noni’s, one of the hippest, (and yummiest), restaurant bars in the neighborhood.
Fire in the Fourth is a curated street experience paying homage to the Great Atlanta Fire of 1917 with over 30 live, local performances by musicians, dancers and artists, history presentations, bike tours and fire games, fire sculptures and fire performers scheduled. It was voted Best “New Festival” by Atlanta Magazine in 2015.
Imperial OPA Circus is returning this year bringing their circus extravaganza to the streets with aerial performers, stilt walkers, clowns and fire breathing. Circus Combustus is joining the festival family this year with their fire poi, fans, whips, juggling balls and musical instruments.
This festival goes way beyond offering amazing food and outstanding live music! Festival goers will be within feet of performers handling and breathing fire, walking on glass, swallowing swords and more! And if you have never dined inside a dome of fire, don’t delay getting your ticket online for the Fire in the Fourth VIP experience. This amazing family festival is free! Learn more at fireinthe4th.com.[foogallery id=”2199″]
Culinary Partners For Bike Tour Events
The dream of opening Staplehouse restaurant belonged to Ryan and Jennifer Hidinger and it began in 2009 as they started hosting a series of supper clubs in their home in their Grant Park neighborhood outside of Atlanta. For three years, the couple grew their customer base and although they didn’t have a brick and mortar space yet, they were already well known in the restaurant community. Momentum was building and the promise of success was palatable.
All that changed in December of 2012 when Ryan was diagnosed with stage IV gallbladder cancer and was given six months to live. Soon after the diagnoses, a benefit was held to aid in the medical cost and $275,000 was raised. This overwhelming love and support from friends, family and the restaurant community sparked a new idea; one they believed they could achieve in Ryan’s lifetime.
Ryan and Jennifer co-founded The Giving Kitchen in 2013. The Giving Kitchen provides financial support to members of Atlanta’s restaurant community who face unexpected hardship. Ryan lost his battle in January 2014, but his legacy lives on at Staplehouse and The Giving Kitchen. Staplehouse opened in September of 2015 and the restaurant’s profits after taxes go to The Giving Kitchen.
At Bicycle Tours of Atlanta, we could not be more honored to partner with them on our cultural arts events. To learn more, go to staplehouse.com and thegivingkitchen.org.
Bantam Pub and Cabbage Pie
When you are sitting across from a restaurant owner who is explaining the finer details of preparing lobster macaroni and cheese and a few minutes earlier he told you about his chiropractic and mixed martial arts career and then shares how he designed and built this rustic and beautiful bar you are sitting in, you realize how much the term Renaissance Man is misused. To hear Timothy Lance, one of the partners of Bantam Pub and Cabbage Pie, tell his personal story is fascinating. Tim is a New Yorker, and in 2009 he made Atlanta his home. He picked the Old Fourth Ward (O4W) because of the creative vibe that was brewing at every corner.
Bantam Pub, most likely the smallest pub in Atlanta, opened in 2013. Lance and his partners set the goal of making this pub “the pride of the O4W.” The way Tim believes you do that is putting your customers first. Lance explained, “We don’t close for movie productions or corporate events. We are ‘this neighborhood’s pub.’ We don’t have wi-fi or tv’s. You come here to connect with people you are sitting next to. That’s how an artistic community can really grow: sharing your creative thoughts with each other. If you don’t have a place to share those creative thoughts, it’s a more starved community.” Recognizing they wanted to be the community’s pub, there is tremendous focus on high-quality food sourcing, variety and delicious affordable meals served up daily and an amazing Saturday and Sunday brunch.
In 2014, Tim and his partners acquired their second restaurant space in Cabbagetown, another well-known artist community. And with great enthusiasm, Tim was at it again, tearing out walls, designing and building out another beautiful space. I’ve introduced many bike tour guests to Cabbage Pie. “Wow…” is the first thing most will say when they walk through the doors. Most restaurant owners rely on well-seasoned interior designers to pull off what Tim describes as “Victorian smashed head-on into mid century modern.”
The pizza is fantastic at this “pizza bistro” as Tim likes to call it — but don’t be fooled by the name, because there are some awesome main courses on the menu and popular brunch served every Saturday and Sunday. Cabbage Pie is worth stopping by to see if only to saddle-up to the beautiful full service bar for a beer and chat with the friendly staff. Learn more at bantampub.com and thecabbagepie.com.
Cultural Arts Bicycle Tours
The inspiration for the Cultural Arts Bicycle Tours came to us, literally, from the streets. Last year, during our signature tour, Fall In Love With Atlanta, we noticed more art popping up along our route. It became clear we needed to give our visitors a chance to explore the art scene by bicycle.
Our cultural arts bike tour is a three-hour tour of street and public art, galleries and performance art. We’ll share awe-inspiring stories of art and artists.
We’ll also offer Special Events which include a culinary and entertainment experience at the end of the bike tour. We have partnered with great restaurants and entertainment venues to make this six-hour long experience one of the most memorable excursions offered in Atlanta.
For our guests who love a great meal and a good laugh, we have partnered with Noni’s and Dad’s Garage Improv Theater Company. Your culinary desires will be completely fulfilled at Noni’s. This popular local restaurant and bar is known for its comfortable atmosphere, and stellar casual food! From there, we roll to Dad’s Garage for adult humor and serious shenanigans. Dad’s Garage hosts Atlanta’s best improv comedy as well as nationally recognized performers.
We are also planning some cool events with Venkman’s, Atlanta’s newest and hippest dinner and music venue owned and operated by two local musicians, Peter Olson and Nick Niespodziani. We have a number of dates already on the calendar with Venkman’s. These events begin with exploring art by bike, followed by a great meal and live music. In late April, our guests will enjoy an Allman Brothers Tribute Band and in June, a David Bowie Tribute Band with exclusive seating for our bike tour guests.
Other culinary partners include Staplehouse, Cabbage Pie, Agave, Bantam Pub, Mezcalitos, King of Pops and Revolution Donuts.
More special evenings will be added as the season progresses. Our special events can be customized for private parties and corporate events. Please go to www.biketoursatl.com to learn more.