Great Ride Series: Jason Hall
The founder of Detroit’s Slow Roll and RiDetroit on riding with 5,000 of his best friends
What if you invited everybody you know on a bike ride and they all showed up? Now, what if all of those people invited everybody they know to the bike ride and they all showed up? And what if this pattern continued until your ride got so big you needed to tell the police where you were riding so they could clear the streets?
That’s essentially the story of Slow Roll Detroit, America’s biggest weekly bike ride. And it all started with one amazing person.
As it turns out, bikes changed everything for Jason – serving as transportation, inspiration and a massive opportunity to connect people of various cultures and backgrounds through the simple act of riding bikes together.
‘I grew up as a black kid in Detroit, and that meant I looked at people in a certain way,’ he said. ‘But then all of a sudden, you’re on a bike and you’re changing tyres with somebody and you forget all that. It’s not that I don’t see colour. I just see every colour in a beautiful way now. It’s amazing.’
Today, Slow Roll has grown to take on a life of its own, allowing Jason to pursue new opportunities. His new brainchild, RiDetroit, provides guided bike tours of Detroit’s cultural landmarks and public murals. Through this, Jason helps others see Detroit the way he sees it – in a beautiful, new way.