The Eye of a Storm – MB Fall Bike Week

The Eye of a Storm – MB Fall Bike Week by Everette “EZ” Short

True to its name, The Hurricane Alley Fall Bike Rally came in bringing a storm with it.  High winds, record rains and a state of emergency were declared in the surrounding areas of both North and South Carolina.  Still, tens of thousands of riders poured into the beach area for a week of celebration and relaxation.  On Wednesday, September 29th, I was at Myrtle Beach Harley Davidson, not expecting many to show up, but I was there to greet anyone brave enough to come. Was I ever surprised to see well over a 1000 rain clad riders rolling into the parking lot with big, wide smiles and rain soaked, dirty yellow slickers on.  The Wilmington area, north of the rally, experienced more rain than ever recorded and yet here they were – riders that couldn’t care less.  They just rode on.  That’s just how we are: when we want to get somewhere; there are no excuses or obstacles that we can’t get over, under, through or past.

The next day, with the rain lifting and the Helmet Laws becoming a dot in our historic rear view mirror, the beach area roared to life around sunup and the crowds in the southern ends started looking like “The Good Old Days” by the time the sun hit the noon sky mark.  SBB, The Beaver Bar, Cooters and the surrounding hot spots were filled to near capacity by night fall on Murrell’s Inlet.  Thousands tested the waters of Myrtle Beach proper early by venturing north to fill up The Swingbridge Saloon, Captain Poos, Harley’s Roadhouse, HB Spokes and all the surrounding venues that were featured on The Fall Rally Treasure Map in US Rider News.

By Friday, the party was on full swing mode when the city announced it would close all North and Southbound access to both the #17 bypass and Hwy #31, effectively forcing people to ride into Myrtle Beach through Kings Hwy.  The sudden closure of lifelines between the two ends was made to accommodate less than 2000 athletes that had come for a triathlon.  Like giant dinosaurs, the crowds ignored the mess, the politics and the city decrees.  They just wound their ways around it and went on about the business of finding one another in a celebration of communion on two wheels.  Meanwhile, on the North side of the Carolina border, in Little River, bikes roared through local bars like Rickey’s Dockside, invaded the waterway to gather at places like The Pilot House and slammed shots at Key West Crazy with no cares about what the city of Myrtle Beach had to say.  “There are two ends of this rally and we’re staying out of the middle,” said Tim Sauer who rides a 2005 Fat Boy. “We’re professionals, not teenagers, and we intend to ACT like professionals,” said Karen Coats, who rides and works as a Hospice nurse, as she sat smiling at a picnic table on the waterway at Captain Poos with her friends.  “If we did see a problem, we just went around it,” she added loudly over the noise of a full capacity crowd that stayed that way for the whole event.  Apparently, Captain Poos is no longer the best kept secret as there was hardly room to park a bike on the entire property, but everyone got along just fine, none the less.

By Saturday, massive amounts of motorcycles covered the entire beach area and while the city is not releasing any numbers or estimates, it appears that over 60,000 motorcycles showed up to prove that we are still here and we’re not going away.  “We’ve had a great time and we’re staying on though next week,” said Jana Thorton who rides with Rusty on a 2009 Big Dog motorcycle.  They were part of a group of almost 20 friends that had ridden in from the middle of North Carolina.  I heard them yelling “We’re in it ‘til the end,” when I left and I’m sure they are.  In a side note of what it’s all about, George “Catfish” Wertheimer told me that he had a problem with his chain while riding in Myrtle Beach proper.  Catfish took a chance and pulled into “Scooters” on Kings Hwy since he had no tools with him.  He said that they immediately took him into the shop and fixed the problem with no waiting and gave him a good price to boot.  When George paid him, the mechanic looked him straight in the eye, shook his hand and said, “Welcome back to Myrtle Beach and thank you for your business.”

On Sunday, most people had jobs to return to, but the feeling was good.  Two days before the event, Denise Triece from MBHD told me that suddenly vendors were ringing the phone off to get spaces, but it was too late.  The few vendors that came took in large rewards, but one rider said it best when he told me “The vendors follow us.  We don’t follow the vendors. We come to be with each other, celebrate life and the freedoms that make this country great.  We didn’t come to buy beads and trinkets.”  By the time you read this, a group of us will be gathering to plan for the Spring Rally.  A lot of innocent businesses didn’t make it through the storm, but to those of you who did, we take our hats off in gratitude.  Remember that you can help make a difference when you stop by any area merchant you see in this magazine and tell them “Thanks for wanting my business.”  I told you we’d be back and if you made it out for the rally, then I’m sure you are glad you did. We all look forward to next Spring so we can make it happen again, but feel free to come by anytime.  The beach is always here and it’s waiting just for you.


17th Trail of Tears Remembrance Ride Schedule for Sept. 18th

August 20, 2010 – WHO: Trail of Tears Remembrance Association, Inc.

WHAT: The Annual Trail of Tears Remembrance Motorcycle Ride

WHEN: The ride, Saturday, September 18, 2010 – 8 a.m. EST. Rain or Shine.

The Official TOT Kickoff Party is Friday, September 17, 2010.

WHERE: Motorcyclists will need to travel West on Martin Luther King Boulevard to Riverfront Parkway in downtown Chattanooga. Traffic directors will be present to line everyone up.

The 2010 Trail of Tears Remembrance Ride will start in Chattanooga, TN, and follow scenic highway 41/72 around Lookout Mt. To Jasper, TN. In Jasper the ride will leave the Drane Hood route and follow Highway 41 to Monteagle, TN. This route is one of the most scenic and historic routes in the state. As the ride comes off Monteagle Mt. it will pass thru Cowan, TN and on to Winchester TN. We will take highway 64 at Winchester which is the Bell Removal route. This route went from Calhoun, TN to Memphis, TN. We will remain on the Bell route to Fayetteville, TN where we will stop for lunch, gas, and restrooms. Official Trail of Tears Remembrance merchandise will be available during our stop at Fayetteville. We will depart at 11:30 or 12:00 C.S.T. (Note: West bound off bypass from Nith Grade Academy to US 64 will be “motorcycles only).

Upon departure we will follow highway 64 to Pulaski, TN, the only point at which 2 land removal routes cross; the Benge and Bell routes. This is a very historical point on the Trail of Tears. We will continue on highway 64 to Lawrenceburg, where the Trail of Tears was routed through downtown. Lawrenceburg holds a Trail of Tears reenactment each year in November. From Lawrenceburg we will head south on highway 43 to Florence, AL and the end of the main ride at McFarland Park.

The last stop for Saturday’s official ride is McFarland Park in Florence, AL, at approximately 2:30 p.m. CST.

DETAILS: There is no registration fee. The ride will be police escorted and riders will be required to obey all law enforcement orders. Riders need to remember that helmets are required; they need to keep up with the pack and always stay in the right lane.

The Official TOT Kickoff Party will be held on Friday, September 17, 2010 at Thunder Creek Harley Davidson on Lee Highway. The party will feature live entertainment, vendors, lots of great food and cold beverages. Visit www.thundercreekharley.com or call 423.892.4888 for more information.

At the finish in Florence, AL, there will be plenty of fun to welcome all riders. The three day

festivities (Sept. 17, 18, & 19) – Native American & Motorcycle vendors, a Pow Wow, storytellers, beadwork activities, flute-making opportunities, exhibition dancing and great food will be open from 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. All area schools are invited on Friday afternoon for a day of education in Native American Culture.

On Sunday Sept. 19 the “Extended Ride” will continue on to Tahlequah, Oklahoma. Please visit our website for information and details.

For more information visit www.trailoftears-remembrance.org or call toll free 1.877.TOT.TRIP (868-8747)

The Tonight Show Headed to Sturgis

Back in May, USRiderNews reported that Pee Wee Herman was heading to Sturgis enroute to Broadway and according to published reports, motorcycle enthuasist and late night talk show icon Jay Leno is making plans to be at the Chip to cover Pee Wee leading thousands of bikers in the world’s largest “tequila dance.”

Campground owner Rod Woodruff said he was unsure of exactly what the show would be covering while at the Chip, beyond the dance. He said as more information becomes available, it will be posted on buffalochip.com and the Buffalo Chip’s Facebook and Twitter pages.

“Pee-wee is going to cram a lot of activity into his two days at the Buffalo Chip,” Woodruff said.


Be Careful What You Wish For

photo courtesy of Cassidybikerun.com

Some residents in the  tiny town of Cassoday Kansas right off Interstate 335 between Topeka and Wichita say they’ve had too much of a good thing and are petitioning the city council to put an end to the Cassoday Bike Run, held the first Sunday of every month.  The critics say the event has grown too large for the area.

Cassoday is billed as the prairie chicken capitol of the word, and because of it’s location at the base of the Kansas flinthills with an abundance of good riding roads, the rally has grown from 15 participants in 1991 to over 7000 on a good Sunday.

The Wichita Eagle reported that  a group of the 120 permanent residents have petitioned the city to end the rally.  At the last council meeting, resident Brett Nelson presented a petition against the rally, telling council members he had signatures from 45 percent of the registered voters in town, who were concerned the bikes were a nuisance and invasion of privacy.

According to the event’s website, the event has it’s beginning when Jack Robinson approached the owner of the Cassoday Cafe, Norma Arsenault and with a request that she open for breakfast on Sunday for his group to ride in.   Norma agreed only to do it if he could bring in enough bikers to be worth her time and money.  The first Sunday’s turnout was 15 and the next month there were 24.  Even Robinson did not anticipate the growth from these humble beginnings.

According to the report, the only real problem is the congestion and the noise.  Local law enforcement say they’ve not had any arrests and there is no nudity, or alcohol.

One council member says the city does benefit from the influx of motorcyclists because local school groups use the event to sell tickets to earn money for new uniforms and bikers groups have offered to erect a flag pole honoring local veterans.   Money from the vendors who line the streets has been used to purchase picnic tables and portable toilets.

The council plans to meet August 9th to address the citizens concerns.

Former Front Man of Poison to Play Full Throttle

[facebook_ilike]80′s glam rocker, Brett Michaels has been booked to perform at the Full Throttle Saloon in Sturgis during the annual Sturgis Bike Week.  The Full Throttle is also the setting for its own reality show on TruTV.

The 47 year old is a walking miracle, having survived juvenile diabetes,  a wicked car crash, emergency appendectomy,a massive subarachnoid hemorrhage, and just this past May the rocker was diagnosed with having a hole in his heart.   Probably the result of having his private sex life with Pamela Anderson displayed on the internet.

Actually, that was just a lame joke, but Michaels has been through the mill, so to speak, both professionally and personally and like all good bikers, he refuses to allow life to beat him down.

Despite having a brain hemorrhage while on Donald’s Trump reality show, Celebrity Apprentice, Michaels returned and even won the competition.

The Full Throttle shows begin at 8 and are free to the public.


Artist Lineup Announced For "Miles & Music

Nationwide Event Series Has Raised $1.2 Million To Date For Children’s Hospitals in Nashville, Phoenix and Dallas

NASHVILLE, TN – May 6, 2010 – With over $1.2 million raised so far, multi-platinum country music star Dierks Bentley is continuing his nationwide “Miles & Music for Kids” celebrity motorcycle ride and concert series with a stop in Atlanta on Sun., May 23.  Presented by Nationwide Insurance, proceeds from the event will benefit Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.

Guests joining Bentley for the cause include Drivin’ N Cryin’, Josh Thompson, Cody Canada of Cross Canadian Ragweed, Chris Janson, T.J. Edmond & The Beggars’ Guild, Shotgun Lover and more to be announced soon.

The ride will depart Killer Creek Harley-Davidson (11480 Alpharetta Highway in Roswell) and travel to the picturesque Lake Lanier Islands Resort (7000 Holiday Road in Lake Lanier Islands), culminating with a special concert on the lake.

Tickets for the family-friendly event are available through Ticketmaster. Prices start at $20, with special VIP packages and combo tickets including waterpark admission also available.

Last year, Bentley joined forces with Nationwide Insurance, CMT ONE COUNTRY and the Children’s Miracle Network to expand the successful “Miles & Music for Kids” event to various cities across the country in 2009 and 2010, with all proceeds benefiting Children’s Miracle Network hospitals in those areas.
For more information visit www.dierks.com.


Eternal Combustion- 30 in the Wind By Michael Lichter

Michael Lichter's 2010 Exhibit in Sturgis

Sturgis Buffalo Chip, SD (April 20, 2010) – Michael Lichter’s internationally renowned and highly anticipated 10th Annual Motorcycles as Art exhibition is sure to be a significant highlight during Sturgis Rally Week 2010. The exhibit is scheduled for August 7-13 and will focus on the explosion of interest and the passion for custom motorcycles seen over the last thirty years. Entitled, “Eternal Combustion- 30 in the Wind”, this year’s display poses the question, “How is this passion passed on through time?”

Thirty custom motorcycles recently built by 15 pairs of builders tied together by family, respect, friendship or apprenticeship will be on display at the impressive Lichter Exhibition Hall located on the grounds of the Sturgis Buffalo Chip. Builder teams highlighted within the show include: Arlen Ness & Paul Yaffe, Carl & Matt Olsen, Dave & Jody Perewitz, Donnie Smith & Brian Klock, Eddie Trotta & Todd Silicato, Kevin Baas & his Kennedy High School Chopper Class, Gard Hollinger & Satya Kraus, James & Dave Kaye, Jerry & David Covington, Kirk Taylor & Brian Schimke, Roland Sands & Drake McElroy, Ron Finch & Gary Maurer, Ron & Hunter Simms, Sugarbear & Counts Customs, Laura Klock and Athena Ransom.

In addition, the 6,500 square foot venue constructed primarily to house the notable exhibitions Lichter has curated, will for the first time, be adorned with Michael’s photography. Celebrating his 30th bike week in Sturgis, he will be displaying the best from his archive of limited edition prints, including many images being premiered for the first time.

This exhibit has been a total labor of love for me as it has been for 9-years,” explains Lichter.

Working with these builders to pair them up, occasionally into a seemingly unlikely pairing at their own request, has been great. It will be great to watch their progress in the coming months. I love this work and I love this industry. Everyone who comes out to see this exhibit will be able to sense the passion felt by all those involved.”

Lichter has been a staple in the motorcycle community for over thirty years, with his name ingrained in the minds and collections of enthusiasts around the world. This is Lichter’s tenth year as curator for the premier Sturgis exhibition. The exhibit started back in 2001 with a display entitled ‘The Biker Generation’. Since that time he has touched on a variety of appealing themes during the yearly exhibit including titles such as “One World Choppers”, “Speed Demons” “Schools Out – Old School, New Skool” Last year’s exhibit, “Rebel Rousers- Motorcycle Icons that Inspired Us to Ride” focused on the history of iconic motorcycle imagery that inspired many of us to ride. Through a poignant review of renowned motorcycles, art and movie memorabilia, fans were reminded of what originally fueled their passion for riding.

“Last year’s exhibit was phenomenal, thousands of guests came to experience the display,” states Sturgis Buffalo Chip owner, Rod Woodruff. “We’re so enthusiastic for this year’s show. Michael Lichter is truly a gifted artist and photographer and we’re delighted to have his yearly exhibit at the Lichter Exhibition Hall here at the Sturgis Buffalo Chip.”

The most eagerly anticipated exhibition of its kind, the Motorcycles as Art exhibition provides Sturgis rally-goers with an unforgettable experience. Visit www.motorcyclesasart.com for more information. Sponsors for this year’s exhibit include Hot Leathers, Interstate Batteries, Progressive Insurance and Spectro Oil.

Motorcycle Rally In Georgia’s little Germany

USRiderNews announces that JB Walker and the Cheap Whiskey Band will headline the 2010 Reunion Run in Helen Georgia Friday June 4th at the Festhalle.  The rally now in its 10th year is held in the Bavarian re-created town in north Georgia and is free and open to all motorcyclists.  Riders can pre-register for a package which includes a t-shirt, poker chip run entry, bike show entry and entry into the party Friday night at the Festhalle.  The fee is $35 per person until May 1st.  Couples get a discount for $55.00 for the pair.

Sylvia Cochran, President of USRiderNews said, “What started out with just a few vendors and a few hundred attendees has turned into a four day event with a park full of vendors and every hotel in Helen Georgia and most of the campgrounds filling up!”

Held on the same weekend as the Balloon festival, the USRiderNews Reunion Run features vendors, a poker run, bike show, live music and a battle of the bands on Friday and Saturday.  ”When the weather is good, the balloons going up are certainly something to see” said Cochran.  She added, “Helen is a typical tourist town with plenty of distractions for everyone in the family, and the riding is some of the best in the south!”

Cochran said there were still some rooms available and anyone interested can contact her at 478-237-3761 (x 11) and check availability.

Maryland Terps MC Underwear Ride Nets $100

photo by Steven Overly

On Firday April 2nd the University of Maryland motorcycle club, The Terps, raise $100 for breast cancer research during their hour long  ”underwear” parade through campus.  I wonder if this wasn’t more about riding through school half nekkid than raising money for the charity.  $100?  C’mon guys, man boobs on the bike?  Seriously.  If that’s the best you can do, next time try a bake sale.

Dierks Bentley Ride Begins at Killer Creek Harley-Davidson

Roswell, Georgia— Multi-platinum country music star Dierks Bentley is continuing his nationwide “Miles & Music for Kids” celebrity motorcycle ride and concert series with a stop in Roswell on Sunday, May 23.

The ride will depart Killer Creek Harley-Davidson and travel to the picturesque Lake Lanier Islands Resort, culminating with a special concert on the beach.   Proceeds from the event will benefit Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.

Details of the ride will be announced soon at www.killercreekharley.com.  Tickets for the family-friendly event went on sale April 10 through Ticketmaster. Prices start at $20, with special VIP packages and combo tickets including water park admission also available.

Last year, Bentley joined forces with Nationwide Insurance, CMT ONE COUNTRY and the Children’s Miracle Network to expand the successful “Miles & Music for Kids” event to six cities across the country in 2009 and 2010, with all proceeds benefiting Children’s Miracle Network hospitals in those areas.  Since it began in 2006, “Miles & Music for Kids” has raised over $1 million.  Other cities already announced for this year include Dallas (April 25) and Seattle (Sept. 18).