When you think “urban bike shorts,” most likely the image of a downtown 10-speed racer whizzing by in some thigh-grazing spandex nut-huggers leaps to mind. (Or is that just us?) But as of Wednesday, Urban Bike Shorts simply refers to one of the many events taking place during the Bicycle Film Festival — an art, music and (mostly) film smorgasbord that celebrates all things two-wheeler — now in its 10th year. The carnival kicks off with the opening of pedal-themed Joyride Art Show at Morono Kiang Gallery downtown, followed by a DJ dance party at The Short Stop. (And why not, right?) After parties are a particular strength of this program, with one capping off each bevy of film screenings that takes place at the Downtown Independent throughout the weekend. Amid shorts chock-full of wicked halfpipe airtime, BFF also features the West Coast premiere of Empire, the somewhat under-the-radar documentary that follows the leanest, meanest riders in New York City, as well as SoCal's answer to it: the locally produced To Live and Ride in L.A., which drops viewers into the rough-and-tumble bike lanes of our fair town.

Wed., Sept. 1; Thu., Sept. 2; Fri., Sept. 3; Sat., Sept. 4; Sun., Sept. 5, 2010

LA Weekly