Celebrating our neighbors from across Asia, the Pacific Islands and the Middle East.
We’re excited to roll out the fourth design in the BIKETOWN Culture Collection: the ASCEND bike, celebrating people from across Asia, the Pacific Islands and the Middle East. It debuts this Sunday, July 21, at the Outer Northeast Portland Sunday Parkways. Join us at John Luby Park (NE 128th Avenue & NE Brazee Street) at 11 a.m. for the big reveal, and the first rides, on this beautiful new bike.
The idea of building bridges between cultures and communities in Portland is evident throughout the BIKETOWN Culture Collection. That theme takes center stage on the ASCEND bike with a design that features bridge-like arches showing how sport connects diverse cultures. Reflective white paint is used as an accent throughout, symbolizing each individual’s journey, no matter their origin.
The design for the ASCEND bike was created by Kathleen Montgomery, an apparel designer with Nike Kids and member of the Nike ASCEND & Friends Employee Network. Kathleen’s grandparents were the first of her family to immigrate to the United States from the Philippines.
“My father grew up in the Philippines and graduated with a civil engineering degree. When he immigrated to the U.S., one of the first projects he worked on was the renovation of the Bay Bridge, which has these white beams that light up and reflect off the water. I incorporated those beams into the design with the blue color palette, to represent the oceans that unite these communities.”
The ASCEND bike is a collaboration among BIKETOWN and the Nike ASCEND Employee Network & Friends – part of Nike’s Employee Diversity & Inclusion Networks that collectively are called NikeUNITED. It’s the fourth design in the new BIKETOWN Culture Collection, which debuted in February with the Black History Month bike wrap, followed by the Women’s History Month and Military Appreciation Month bike wraps. The Culture Collection wraps celebrate some of the communities and cultures that make up the fabric of Portland.
Unlike previous Culture Collection bikes, the ASCEND design doesn’t fit into one cultural or community appreciation month. That was intentional. The ASCEND bike takes the lead of Nike ASCEND Employee Network & Friends, which evolved from an Asia-Pacific network to include the Middle East, with the name “ASCEND” speaking to going above and beyond to be more representative.
As with all the Culture Collection bikes, we strive to honor and reflect ASCEND's commitment to representation through the photographers documenting this project, Gritchelle Fallesgon and Molly Quan.
Thank you to our community partners at IRCO (Immigration & Refugee Community Organization) and APANO (Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon) for your great work and continued partnership. Both of these organizations embody the ASCEND bike’s bridge design through their missions of helping people thrive no matter their origin or destination.