Originally Published: April 30, 2016 6:15 a.m.
The annual Whiskey Off-Road has returned, spanning all weekend from Friday, April 29, to Sunday, May 1, and though the event is about bringing the mountain biking community together, there’s more to do during the weekend than just participating in or watching a race.
When it comes down to it, there’s quite a bit of entertainment to be had, from music all weekend long to two beer gardens, up from one last year, and the largest Bike & Gear Expo the Off-Road has seen. It’s a definite expansion of the entertainment side of things, said Epic Rides President Todd Sadow.
“We want it to grow and benefit the community so that anybody can appreciate it,” Sadow said.
When it comes to the musical side of things, the tunes start on Friday with South of Winslow performing their Eagles covers from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. on the Holiday Courtyard Stage and Haymarket Squares performing on the Gurley Stage from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, the music starts early with local youth band The Cross-Eyed Possum on the Holiday Courtyard Stage from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Following them is The CheekTones on the Gurley Stage from 11:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. and the Bo Wilson Incident Band on the Holiday Courtyard Stage from 1 to 2:30 p.m. Then it’s Road One South on the Holiday Courtyard Stage from 3 to 4 p.m. and Jared & the Mill on the Gurley Stage from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m.
Starting at 6 p.m. and playing until 7:30 p.m. is the Saturday headlining act, Black Joe Lewis, on the Gurley Stage. Sadow spoke very highly of the band.
“They put on an incredible show,” he said. “It’ll be hard to sit down.”
Following Lewis, Steve Annibale will perform on the Holiday Courtyard Stage from 8:30 to 9 p.m. and the Bo Wilson will perform solo on the Gurley Stage at from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Sunday.
It’s not just music though. This year, there will be two locations for the beer garden: one at the main stage when there’s music playing and one at the start and finish line, Sadow said. Prescott is the only location Epic Rides hasn’t had a beer garden at the finish line yet, he said, noting having one in that location started in Grand Junction last year and has been something that people really enjoy. Mountain bikes and craft brews are two-thirds of a trifecta for the mountain biking community, Sadow said. The other third are dogs.
The beer garden is from Sierra Nevada Brewing Company.
Even for those who aren’t into mountain biking, the entertainment aspect of the event alone makes it worth checking out, Sadow said.
“We want the whole community to know they’re welcome,” he said.