By T.J. and Stephanie Thompson
From the Daytona International Speedway to the Atlantic beach boardwalks, Daytona Bike Week brought the bike shows, custom builds, and the epic parties for the 78th Anniversary Bike Week Festival March 8-17, 2019. The ten-day event included live music, food vendors, custom bike builds, demo rides, bike shows, concerts, a bike parade, motorcycle vendors, and unforgettable good times. Daytona Bike Week has been identified as the Sturgis contender bringing in an estimated 500,000 riders. However, coming to Daytona Bike Week is not just the historic Main Street to Midtown ride. Do not get me wrong, it is a must see part of the event; but riding scenic A1A Highway along the Atlantic coast up to the oldest city in America, St. Augustine, is essential!
Steph and I rode down to Daytona, Florida from Arkansas over two days stopping in Atlanta, Georgia for the night. Once we arrived in Daytona, we spent the day at the International Speedway which in itself is a one-of-a-kind experience. There is no way that you can visit all of the vendor booths and soak everything in with one visit… plus it is worth going back the next day. With over one hundred vendors and install tents for wheels, LED lights, grips, bars, accessories and more. The vendors at the Speedway parking lots were not the only action, the track was happening as well and you can catch Supercross, Amateur Supercross, Flat Track TT and the Daytona 200 all during the rally.
If you are like us, we are always searching for the best deals and ways to save money! Sopotnick’s Cabbage Patch is always hopping and they feature $10 camping right across the road at the Cabbage Patch Campground. We also caught the “World Famous” Coleslaw Wrestling on Wednesday & Saturday. If you have not had the chance to watch the double-elimination tumbling competition with flying coleslaw and strong smell of vinegar, you need to make the trip to the Patch to catch the show! Make sure you watch for the dates as the Coleslaw Wrestling is a special event that does not happen daily and you want to make sure you have a good spot to watch the competition. The patch hosted the preliminaries on Wednesday and then the finale on Saturday. The winner, “Cookie,” took home the title and the CASH prizes of $2,600 for the week.
What bike rally event is complete without a bike show or two? There were countless bike shows during Bike Week like Willie’s Tropical Tattoo Bike show, Daytona Beach Boardwalk bike show, Bikes N’ Bass, & KSO No-Class Bike show at the Hard Rock. Each of these bike shows brought the best of the best! Make sure you tune in to our YouTube and catch some of the highlights of these shows.
One of our favorite bike shows had to be Willie’s Tropical Tattoo “Old School Chopper” Bike show where they featured twenty different classes for their ride-in style bike show. They had girls, beer, bands, and some amazing bikes with custom artwork. All of this was packed into a five-hour slot from 11am-4pm. One of the coolest choppers that we spotted was a custom build S&S 124 EVO with a 37 degree rake and a paint job that just so happens to match my head tattoo! The owner, Jesse Srpan, of Raw Iron Choppers, told us a little history of the bike “Trepidation” which ultimately took home the “Best Evo” award from the show.
The party is not just in one place! Cabbage Patch, Iron Horse Saloon, International Speedway, Main Street, and we cannot forget about Destination Daytona at Bruce Rossmeyer’s Harley-Davidson: where there is always a good time to be had. Each morning of the ten-day rally Bruce Rossmeyer’s features FREE KEGS & EGGS where they provide a free breakfast and beer at 9am. We had planned on heading over to their event on Friday but our bike was stolen Thursday night from Main Street. Follow our social media for more details on that and how it all played out. Overall, Daytona Bike Week knows how to throw a party, and they delivered!
The Ornery One
TJ & Stephanie Thompson