Our Soda Folk hero, Colorado Springs bike mechanic Brian Gravestock has taken his skill and added a whole new spin: donating finished bikes to those in need across his local community.
Brian has run Bike Clinic Too since ’09, to support the original Bike Clinic he founded in ’93 with friend Peter Sprunger-Froese. Bikes are donated, repaired by Brian and his team, then given to local homeless, offering them a freedom they would struggle to achieve alone.
A bike isn’t just a method of getting from one place to another. It is that ‘wind in the hair’ freedom to move swiftly, to escape urban life, to just hit the saddle and ride. Such freedoms form the roots of a healthy mind, which is why we chose Brian to grace our cans and bottles of craft Root Beer.
Here’s to you Brian!
Colorado resident Fred Lewis spent his early years in the US Air Force, becoming its boxing champ and one of a small handful to have knocked down the great Muhammad Ali.
Although ultimately losing his fight with Ali by a single point, Fred never stopped being a heavy hitter. Moving to Colorado Springs in ’69, he established a boxing club called 3D. Those D’s stood for desire, discipline and dedication, three qualities that spread into Fred’s other calling; fighting the Lord’s fight.
Ordained as a minister in ’75, this Preacher was never content to let the crowds flock to the church, instead taking his message on the road in the form of selected scriptures painted across the side of his pickup truck.
That’s why we chose hard-hitting Fred ‘The Preacher’ Lewis to grace our smooth Cream Soda cans and bottles.
In our modern world, our gardens have come to represent a boundary between our home and the rest of the world. Guerilla Gardener, Richard Reynolds sees things a little differently. “My garden is in the middle of the road”, he tells us…and nope, he’s not joking.
Having moved into a flat in London owning his own garden seemed a pipe dream so Richard decided to look beyond his flat and fill roundabouts, playgrounds, traffic islands and other municipal spaces with flowers and shrubs, on a campaign of cultivation that he continues to this day! That’s 12 years of planting, pruning, watering and weeding, with the sole goal of injecting a little colour into the lives of fellow garden-deprived city folk. What a guy right!
When looking for a face to place on our bottles of craft Orange Soda, we could think of no sunnier an outlook than that of Richard Reynolds.
Coloradans will remember the lone llama of Pikes Peak. The poor little Peruvian spent 6 weeks lost in the Rockies back in ’09, surprising Cog Railway riders and worrying train conductors as well as gathering a fair amount of media attention.
Thin and frostbitten as he was, the little guy toughed it out and was eventually rescued by Black Forest llama owner, Tracy duCharme.
To succeed where Cog Railway workers and Pikes Peak Rangers had failed, Tracy and her friend Mike Shealy took two of their own llamas – Dancer and Shasta – into the wild to see if the promise of a little company would coax out the kid camelid.
Their plan worked and the lost llama soon trotted over to make friends, allowing Tracy and friend Mike Shealy to fit a rope and halter, then lead it into their waiting trailer. Great work, guys!
Tracy, for services to llama-kind, we dedicate our craft Cherry Soda to you.
While the gang here are certainly busy folk, we’re nowhere near as busy as Carrlean Chang.
A longtime nurse, a mother of five, a writer and occasional voice of the voiceless, Carrlean has even played a major role in changing British law. Amazingly, she even finds time to work with charity group Heeling Soles, gathering pairs of unwanted shoes and distributing them worldwide to those in need.
Carrlean, we salute you!
Who is this Soda Folk? Part of our ethos here at Soda Folk is to inject a little colour and creativity into this little ol’ World of ours.
Which brings us to Debs Tiley. Debs has been craftily painting up the public benches that sit alongside her local canal. Under cover of darkness, Debs took her artistic flair and put it out there, without any desire for fanfare.
Not content with beautifying benches, Debs has found other ways to spread a little love around the community, setting up tables and chairs outside her house and providing tea and biscuits for passers by. Or buying bunches of flowers and taking them to whatever home takes her fancy, just for the sheer decency of it. To support her vision of a building a more colourful world, we chose Debs to grace our bottles of craft Juniper Soda.