Muni Weekend story in Sacramento Bee

There was a story about Muni Weekend in the Sacramento Bee yesterday.

You can see it on the web at this link:

John Hooten

Ok, you heard it here. John Foss is now to be known as “the Grandfather of Mountain Unicycling”.

And Kris Holm as the Elvis of mountain unicycling. Hmmmm…

Yup. They could’ve gotten better pics of Ryan and the rest of the riders if they had gone to the top of the trail head, though. I did like the perspective of the article, though.

I thought it was a well rounded article. So much so, that on a scale of 1 to 10, with 6 being the most round, I’d give it a nice even 2 pi. -the extra points being for effort.

I’ve got a funny stroy involving this article…
In the airport in Sacramento, i was going through security, and the guy there pulled my bag off to the side, and proceeded to rummage through it. As he was doing so he asked me some questions…
“Where are you from?”

“What is this” Holding a seat post i had forgot to put in my checked luggage"
“A unicycle seatpost”

“Why are you here for that mountain unicycling event?”

“are you the guy on the front page of the metro section in yesterday’s paper?”
“Why, yes, yes i am” (stunned)

“Wow, i should be asking for your autograph”(proceeds to go over to his supervisor, talks for a minute, points to me and walks back over)

“well, looks like you’re all set to go!”

I don’t think he would have let me keep the seatpost had it not been for that article. It was quite a funny experience!!

Oh, and by the way, the weekend was awesome! thanks so much for eveyone who put so much effort into making it a reality!


The leg in the photo wearing the protective gear is mine. :slight_smile:

It would have been even cooler if I had Kris Holm armour in the photo.

Grandpa here.

I think the “grandfather” thing may have been a confusion over something the writer was told about George Peck. If this sport is going to have a grandfather, it has to be him. If I’m the grandfather, he would have to be the original sperm.

I’ll settle for being the father or founder of MUni Weekends, or organized MUni. I had something to do with encouraging the first offroad races at USA and IUF competitions, in 1989 and 88 respectively.

I’m the one responsible for the “Elvis” quote about Kris Holm. I said he’s the Elvis or the Tiger Woods of mountain unicycling. Using that system, I guess I would be the Scott Hamilton.

I thought the newspaper pictures were great. If you stand at the top of the hill looking down, you won’t see a hill. The shots that guy used did a great job of showing the angle of the terrain. Since he was only there for the Confluence Uphill Race, they came out great. I think the picture of Ryan in the air was taken right at the parking area on the side of the road. Thanks Ryan, for giving us all something to watch when we were resting, and otherwise too tired to ride!

The weekend turned out great, and everyone seemed to have a nice time. We didn’t do as many “games” (competitive events) as I had prepared for, but people seemed content to watch the Trials guys play on the terrain while they relaxed in the shade, or jumped into Folsom Lake.

A TV crew taped us on Friday for Good Evening Sacramento, which is supposed to be shown on Wednesday, Oct. 29 (I’m assuming that’s what she meant by “next Wednesday”). This is on our local Channel 31 (cable 12), which is a Viacom station. It may get syndicated. I told them that the shot they had, of 40-or-so MUni people riding down the trail past their camera, is one that I don’t think anyone else has! Hopefully it gets out to a wide audience.

Good press for an event with no press releases…

We had a count of 79 people at our big dinner/video screening on Saturday. I don’t know who all of those people were, so if any of you non-registered’s want to identify yourselves, you’re welcome to step up and pay for it like everyone else did. :roll_eyes:

I don’t know the actual registered total yet; got to straighten out all my last-minute paperwork. I’ll report on that and the competition results soon.

Thanks to all the many people who helped out to make this eighth MUni Weekend a success:

  • John Hooten for housing up to 9 or 10 guests at his place, making the T-shirt design, Granite Bay maps, and riding sweep on several of the rides.
  • Jacquie for putting up with me getting ready, and a house full of strangers during a weekend where she was sick, and had to deal with a family wedding.
  • Lloyd Johnson for making several Trials toys and bringing them to the rides. Also for offering to help host next year ('04 at Lake Tahoe!).
  • Sue Hooten, who apparently was the source of our Sacramento Bee coverage on Oct. 5, which led to the TV coverage on Friday.
  • All of our sponsors who donated prizes: Gilby, Judy Stoltzfus,, and one or two others. also sponsored, but we haven’t seen the box of goodies yet! :stuck_out_tongue:
  • The Riegel family, for housing 5 or more total strangers who they had never met!
  • All of the guests at my house for leaving the place more or less the way you found it, as well as helping out.
  • The great folks at Mana Japanese Restaurant and Mark & Monicas for taking great care of our huge groups!
  • All the drivers who gave people rides, either to and from the airport, to the trails, or up the hill for the shuttles we did. Especially to Matt Wilhelm and Mr. Colegrove for driving up the rough dirt road in Downieville to pick people up.
  • Eveyone else who helped out to make MUni Weekend 2003 another fun, memorable event!

MUni Weekend Lost & Found…

When my nieces and nephews come over, they traditionally leave more stuff than all 14-or-so of our weekend guests did combined. But they did leave us a few “presents:”

  • A pair of perscription glasses in a LensCrafters case

  • A pair of Harbinger wristguards

  • One black Bell cycling glove

  • A pair of shorts or underwear, in a ziploc bag. I’m not opening that.

If any of this stuff belongs to you, you are welcome to come pick it up any time. :smiley:

Just kidding. Let me know who you are if you want it back! I’m kind of hoping those wristguards fit me… :slight_smile:

I want to thank John Foss, grandfather or not, and everyone else who helped putting on such a fantastic weekend. It was really great meeting/seeing and riding with so many of you.

Ryan, your airport security story is the best! You’re the man!

And to DAN HEATON: WOW!!! Universe II brought down the house. My favorite shot was Dylan crossing and uncrossing his eyes! Fantastic.

You guys will love Lake Tahoe next year!


I liked when Dylan spun his head around, and when he “met” the rock. Also the B.C. wheel up the curb, and all the telephoto shots with Mt. Ranier or the Space Needle in the background. Especially the one where Dan drops out of sight.

Thanks to everybody involved in putting this weekend together, especially Johns Foss and Hooten, for running things and driving my friends and I around, respectively. Also to the Riegel family, for putting us up and feeding us and being really nice about it.

Is anybody planning on recording the TV segment and putting it online?


To John Foss,

Sorry about the grandfather thing. You are correct that it was a statement made about George Peck. As Jocelyn, the reporter was interviewing me just after the group photo on Saturday, we sat down by the river and I mentioned that George and Kris had shown up in 1998 at the same Calif. MUni Weekend (my 2nd). I called George Peck the grandfather of the sport. Since the reporter did not know you well or George at all, she confused my reference. But you should know that “grandfather” was used with honor.

Anybody else a little sore after the Downieville Downhill ?

I don’t have a brake on my MUni.

Re: grandfather?

The consensus seems to be that the people with brakes finished the ride a lot fresher, and tended to be a lot less sore than the people without. I spent most of yesterday with Gilby and Dustin Kelm, and we kept laughing at each other as we struggled to stand up, and looked for ramps to walk down instead of steps as we toured Old Sacramento.

I am equally sore today. Now I know it’s the downhill, and not the miles, that causes the damage. That’s just a lot of down, combined with a lot of gnarly trail to keep you working!

– The grandfather feels younger again. George Peck is restored to his proper place.

Re: grandfather?

Yes. My legs were feeling it yesterday and some today. I do have a brake, but I went brakeless for Downieville. I consider it a good kind of sore because it makes you legs stronger.

Downieville was a really really fun ride. Fun terrain, good mileage, fun bits on the trail. The only thing missing was killer views. I want to ride Downieville again. Now that I know the trail I know where to concentrate my effort for maximizing the fun value on the trail.

I’ll have to consider heading to Downieville after next years muni weekend in Tahoe/Truckee. Wheee!!! :slight_smile:

Looks like this is where the thank you’s are going so I’ll put mine here too.

John Foss:

Thank you for organizing the weekend. It is obviously a huge endeavor and I can’t tell you enough what a great time I had! I hope we can someday host the weekend here in Santa Barbara. Also thank you for sharing Rough Terrain Unicycling by George Peck, truly inspiring.

John and Jacquie:

Thank you for opening you home to total strangers. There are not many in the world that would still do that especially for heavily tattooed individuals :slight_smile: (btw, I wish I had a camera to catch the looks on everyone’s faces when we walked in the door :astonished: )

John Hooten:

Thank you for riding sweep and making sure I wasn’t having a myocardial infarction at the back of the line. It was a lot of stop and go for you, but it was nice not getting left behind.

Texas Trio:

Thanks for reminding me what nice folks there are back home

Yuba Expeditions:

Thanks for teaching me how to take tight turns in my truck going 80 mph.


Thanks for putting up with me for a long weekend. I was probably the slowest and least experienced person on the trail and the event has left me with nothing less than a positive attitude and strong will to keep advancing in this sport. I met a lot of great people this weekend who I hope to ride with again.

Mothers of all participants:

Thanks for being fond of the names John, Tom, and Scott. It really made it easier to remember names!


In the spirit of the JC thread on thread-jacking, it looks like this one has shifted to thank-yous. Mine:

John Foss: Great organization for a very well-run event. You were all over everything without being (too) obsessive. Always responded to all my mails quickly, even though I’m sure I was repeating FAQs some of the time. Coming in from out of state with no familiarity with the area, I felt like I knew where to be all the time and exactly how to get there. Your hard work made it easy.

John and Jacquie: the unreal hospitality. Even though I didn’t stay at your house, I was there a lot. Love them noisy doggies too…

Nathan, John H, John F, Scot C, Scott A, Bruce B, Lloyd J…basically all the California veterans…for being so sharing of every aspect of your experience. It was great to hear the stories on the history and evolution of the sport and its equipment, then go to riding school with masters of the terrain. As a relative newbie, I felt like my knowledge and skills got a huge boost this past weekend.

Also apologies: to anyone that made the mistake of following me too closely, and had to UPD whenever I did. :sunglasses:

John: Is it next year yet? Huh, is it? Is it?

Yes, good article. And soon I am sure everyone will be using your new unicyclist’s rating scale, Jerry.