Pics By Pastor Z and Ken Tice
Daytona Bike Week is always an opportunity to hang out with a few hundred thousand of your closest friends. This year was no different. It was awesome an awesome rally. I’ve been going every year since 2007! Although my flights got waaaay delayed – and I arrived later than planned, I finally got settled in at about midnight.
The next morning we hopped on the bikes and headed out to the “Horse Backstreet Chopper Show” sponsored by Willie’s Tropical Tattoo’s in Ormand Beach. They had great bands, lots of tattooed folks, and it was definitely “the place to be” !
There were some really incredible bike builds there. I love seeing the crazy creations that some people come up with. Some of them are really amazing – others are just bizarre, some were totally out of control ! Art in Iron, paint & chrome.
Local BFC Chapter Leader Bobby C. entered two Panheads. One was a very clean stock build, the other (my favorite) was an older school Bobber type.
All in all – it was an absolutely incredible show. Next on our list was cruising Main Street – downtown Daytona, and again we are talking “ABSOLUTE MAYHEM”… people partying everywhere, no place to park, but lots of cool sights to see. Lots of non-bikers, more like the Spring Break types gathered to watch all the crazy and loud bikes blasting by… It was a lot of fun – blasting down the boulevard as we were entertaining the crowds, and again every style of bike, and creations of madness – just to get the reactions.
We visited “Destination Daytona” – one of the world’s largest Harley extravaganza’s… But at 100,000 square feet – my buddy New York Myke’s shop still kills “their building” by an extra 10,000 feet. But it is a sight – with 3 floors (elevators, and escalators) and bikes everywhere. They also have JP Cycles, restaurants, bars, and even condo’s on the property.
Riding around Daytona and the beaches in the vicinity during the day is a beautiful site. We put on quite a few miles, and really enjoy the sights, sounds, and smells that you experience on two wheels. We also visited the “Music for the Soul” stage that my friend Don Overby travels with & sets up at most of the bike rallies in the USA. We watched some music by Mark Mason an amazing Christian guitarist, who was joined by, Eddie Big-un Day, Pontus Back from Finland, and some other awesome musicians. Don and his unique stage has been at Daytona every year that I’ve been there.
On Saturday the local Confederation of Clubs hosted an awesome “Biker Rights” rally. The problems in Daytona are like most areas. Our BFC brother Bobby C. is the secretary of the COC, heavily involved in ABATE, and is a real freedom-fighting machine in the state of Florida. We are all proud of him and his work. He serves BFC as our East Central Florida chapter elder, and serves the motorcycle community as the North Florida Confederation of Clubs Secretary with a passion!
Here’s a few words from Bobby C. “Since the rally, several other bars have been forced to put up no colors signs, one bar went bankrupt, and the event coordinator (me) has been contacted by the police saying that next year’s rally, if we so chose to do one, will have to be assessed by the police due to placing the public’s safety in jeopardy. As you know, here in Daytona Beach and Volusia County and in Florida in general, the clubs and bar owners have been getting harassed and shutdown for many years (nothing new, I know). It’s to the point where the bar owners just comply with the police chief ’s “request” and put the No Colors signs up out of fear of loosing their permits, or getting harassed to the point of running the customers off and bankrupting the businesses (one of the tactics is they like to park their hostage negotiations vehicle with their lights on in front of the bars that don’t comply). The Daytona PD Chief uses words continuously like “domestic terrorists” and “criminals” when talking to the public with regards to Clubs in general.
The Chief of police continually threatens that their liquor licenses will be revoked if they serve the undesirables of his community– the M/C’s. Which means that basically any motorcycle organizations that wear back patches (colors) are not welcome. These tactics continue as an assault on all motorcycle organizations that wear back patches – to cripple them, and disband them… which again violates their 1st Amendment Constitutional rights. And again the reason that the clubs are banding together is the idea, that if one M/C falls, it’ll just be a matter of time – that we all will face the same consequences.”
Bobby C. took the lead organizing the event, and the Florida COC set-up the “peaceful protest” in a downtown park. The Bikers Rights Rally was a huge success as literally hundreds of patch holders (with lots of visitors from many states) made a very loud, visual statement of solidarity that they will stand fight these unlawful decisions together until the laws are changed. And it is basically one for all, and all for one.
Throughout the entire weekend – it was all about all of the different types of bikers – the people who make the motorcycle world so exciting, basically everyone who rides two or three wheels. Daytona 2015 had an estimated 300,000 bikes in town – and continues to be one of the coolest rallies in the USA to attend.
The sounds, the sites, and the scene continues to draw people in from all over America, and from overseas. I met people from quite a few different countries, and they all have one thing in common: The excitement of riding chrome horses everywhere and meeting new friends, and hanging out with old friends. I hope to be back for Daytona Bike Week every year – as it really rocks!
And it has always been a huge blessing. I’d like to thank my family in Bikers For Christ Florida – for helping me get there each year, for giving me a safe place to stay, and also for always hooking me up with a cool bike to ride. I really love and appreciate you guys and gals.
Until next time, Your Roving Reporter & Sharp-shooter, Pastor Z.