Message of cameraderie: the courier championships come to Chicago


Nico Deportago-Cabrera and Christina Peck.

[This piece also appeared in Checkerboard City, John’s weekly transportation column in Newcity magazine, which hits the streets in print on Wednesday evenings.]

Mayor Daley’s campaign to host the 2016 Olympics in Chicago failed, but local bike messengers are realizing their dream to bring the Olympics of two-wheeled delivery to town. As the athletic action heats up in London, this weekend hundreds of couriers from around the globe will converge in our city for the 20th Annual Cycle Messenger World Championships, with a packed schedule of races, arts events and parties celebrating their unique lifestyle.

Championships-related events have been taking place all week, with the main competitions happening all day Saturday and Sunday, starting at 10 am, in the south parking lot of Soldier Field, 18th Street and the Lakefront Trail, next to the sled hill. Other highlights include track racing at the Ed Rudolph Velodrome in Northbrook, a nighttime “alleycat” (messenger-style race in live traffic), a movie night with courier-themed films, an opening party featuring punk-rock legends Agent Orange and the infamous Messenger Prom. Check out the full schedule of events here.

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