The idea behind Bikes and Beers Across America (BBAM) started out like many great ideas –a late night bar conversation scratched out on cocktail napkins. Hank

Hank Whitin, owner of Pour Judgement Bar & Grill, became reflective on his upcoming milestone birthday. “I realized I didn’t want to turn 50, 25 lbs. overweight and drunk in my own bar,” said Whitin, “so I decided to bike across the country again, as I did when I was 23 years old.” And thus, BBAM was born.

As a child, Whitin rode 50 and 100 mile charity rides for Multiple Sclerosis in honor of his grandmother Libby, who lived with MS from the age of 30 until her passing 56 years later. Having ridden from Seattle, WA to Westport, MA, in 1990, the idea of doing another ride transformed from an “I’d really like to do this again” lament to a “why not” reality.

Whitin and Team Pour Judgement have raised almost $15,000 for Multiple Sclerosis since announcing their campaign back in March, and show no signs of slowing down! The team begins their trek this Thursday, May 18th when they fly out of Logan Airport. The first stop on the map is Astoria, Oregon. This is where the crew will begin their cross-country journey. After landing in Astoria, the team plans to bike to Portland where they hope to connect with craft breweries and brew pubs along the route. “BBAM is all about inclusion,” says Whitin, “so cyclists and craft brew lovers are welcome to join for various legs of the ride!”

Hank Whitin (center, with cake) and crew at a BBAM Voyage Party at Pour Judgement

Those who can’t make the journey or want to check in with Whitin and his team, are encouraged to follow them on Facebook (@BikesBeersAmerica) and Instagram (@BikesBeersAmerica). Daily updates will be posted as they travel through major cities and national landmarks like the Columbia River, Yellowstone National Park, Chicago, the Great Lakes and Boston. Whitin and his team plan to make their triumphant return to Newport the second week of July, passing over the Sakonnet Bridge and biking over the threshold and into Pour Judgement Bar and Grill.

For more information about BBAM and to find out how you can donate go to

A cake from Mad Hatter Bakery wishes the BBAM team good luck.

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What's Up Newp. He was born and raised in Rhode Island and graduated from Coventry High School. He serves as Vice President of Fort Adams Trust and serves on the Board of Directors for Potter League for Animals. Ryan also is currently the Senior Editor - North America for Mountain News, publisher of OnTheSnow. Ryan is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA).