partying it up with des moines city ride!

Last weekend I had the pleasure of hosting a little after party for Des Moines City Ride. It was my first real event as a blogger, so I wasn't sure what to expect. But I'm happy to report it went really well.

If you recall, I spoke with the founder of City Ride a few weeks ago (if ya missed it, you can check it out here.) When I asked Andrea what inspired her to start the group, she said she wanted to get "people off the trails and onto the streets." 

Judging by the size of the group that joined us, her idea is catching on. Way to go, Andrea and team! 

My friend, Chrissy, owns one of my favorite shops in the City and she was kind enough to let us use her space for the evening. Guys, her shop is seriously the best place to host a party! I speak from experience because this is the second time I've hosted something here. The space has great lighting, good vibes, and somehow Chrissy's Spotify playlists always strike that perfect balance between being endlessly hip and ridiculously chill.

Joining the evening's activities was my friend, Esther, who created a crazy delicious spread for us, full of hummus, whipped goat cheese, and tons of fruit and veggies to energize everyone after the ride. This whole shindig felt like a community event because of many people were involved and I really enjoyed that aspect of it. Go team!  

I don't rides bikes, but I do enjoy mingling with strangers while eating delicious this was basically my ideal Monday night. I even had a couple of friends drop by to say hello (thanks Addie and Miranda!)

To be honest, it was pretty awkward the first five minutes or so. While I'm incredibly social, I do better one-on-one than I do with large groups of people. So when everyone came inside, it was a bit overwhelming. But as I moved around the room and started asking people questions, I slowly felt more and more comfortable. Also, if there was lull in the conversation, I'd just start eating something! Problem solved.

As I've said, I know nothing about bikes, so I had lots of honest questions and the entire group was really down-to-earth and perfectly okay with all of my inane questions: how often do you ride? do you always wear a helmet? why are you so sweaty?!

I also really excited to have my friend and henna artist, Rayna, join us for the event. Between the ride, the food, and the henna, it was a pretty full evening. I'm starting to find a groove with hosting events and I've come to believe that an event should have at least, two major attractions (e.g. food and henna.) 

All things considered, it was a great evening and I was so happy to be able to celebrate Andrea's vision coming to life here in the City. I left the event feeling full of gratitude and full of hummus. And I don't think anything can top that combination.

p.s. I'm headed to 80/35 this weekend! Will I see you? 

p.s.s. all photography by Liz Brown (because she's amazing and once you find someone with spectacular talent, you never let go.)