|The view from our balcony.|
Daytona Bike Week bills itself as the largest motorcycle rally which it probably is. The simple reason is that it is near densely populated areas, has plenty of motels and there are big events around Bike Week to help draw and keep crowds such as NASCAR Speed Week, the Daytona 200 motorcycle race, spring break and so on.
In 2001, my good friend Mark had a hotel room reserved for five nights, the minimum stay on Daytona Beach during Bike Week. His roommate bailed out at the last minute and I volunteered to take his place. Here is some of what went on.
|Main Street parking fills up fast.|
We left on a Saturday riding all day in the rain to Biloxi, then into Daytona on Sunday in beautiful weather which remained so all week. The hotel was old and a bit run down but well maintained. Our room had a great view of the motel pool, the beach and the Atlantic Ocean. We spent Sunday evening cleaning up our V-Maxes which were really filthy from the trip. A typical day went like this.
|You can never have too many Rhinestones.|
We would get up early and ride down to main street to get a good parking place and have breakfast at the Main Street Cafe. Walk around window shopping the local stores and the vendors that set up for the event. Check out all the cool motorcycles and biker babes.
|Budweiser Girls tease onlookers.|
Mark had warned me that I might see some outrageous outfits -- chaps and thongs for example. I did see one outfit like that, but he wasn't my type.
|Replicas of Captain America and Billy Bike from Easy Rider.|
We had some V-Max events we attended -- an impromptu birthday party at a popular restaurant for one of the members, a nice dinner at the home of a local member, a barbecue at a campground where several members were staying and of course a group ride. But the coolest thing was getting up about 3:00 a.m. one morning to meet the regional director and ride south toward Cape Canaveral where we rode up onto a bridge at dawn and parked to watch the Space Shuttle take off.
There was other neat stuff too. We visited the Iron Horse Saloon and watched the burn-outs and other craziness. We hung out at the Rice Paddy with the sport bike crowd which was a very pleasant park with stunt riders and a virtual drag race dynamometer set up.
As Mark likes to say, Daytona Bike Week is the Mecca of motorcyclists; every motorcyclist should go there once during their lifetime. I never thought I would want to go to one of the big rallies and if Mark's friend hadn't bailed out I never would have, but I went and I'm glad I did.
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