Las Vegas Bikefest: Pawn Stars 5th Annual Poker Run

By Shannon “Dazzlin” Venturo

2018 Las Vegas BikeFest is once again one for the books. Each year thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts flock to Sin City to enjoy the beautiful riding weather and all that Vegas is known for around the globe.

There is so much for everyone. With the schedule of events jam packed with bike shows, poker runs, contests, biker bingo, slot tournaments, Ink Mayhem and top name entertainment, event goers have the ability to make the rally their own!

Major sponsor Russ Brown Motorcycle Attorneys had vendor space where riders could sign up for their BAM program: a community of riders who cooperate together for roadside assistance and resources for their fellow riders who need help on the road. Always nice to see these folks!

The entertainment was fantastic. I had the pleasure of attending several concerts. Puddle of Mudd had the crowd rocking out. They performed all of their best songs like “She Hates Me,” “Blurry” & “Psycho.” One woman in the crowd insisted on squeezing her way through the crowd to get close enough to the stage to flash her boobs and throw panties towards the lead singer. She begged me not to publish the picture, sorry. Her secret is safe in my camera.

One of the highlights of my annual Las Vegas BikeFest weekend was spending time with the crew at this year’s 5th Annual Pawn Stars Poker Run. Five years strong, led by Rick Harrison, the ride kicked off at the world famous Gold and Silver Pawn shop. It was followed by a great BBQ lunch at Rick’s Rolling Smoke, and festivities in Pawn Plaza. The Pawn Stars Poker Run has a giant first place prize of $2,000! And believe it or not the WORST hand, dead last, won $1,000.

We did have a critical moment during the poker run. As we separated and pulled off from the ride to get pictures of the riders coming off the freeway in Jean for the first stop at the Pioneer Saloon, our Bling Deva MC member “Blossom’s” highway peg hit a construction barrel on the highway. This sent the large orange obstacle flying backwards into the pack. It hit another Bling Deva rider’s hand, “Pixie,” and sliced through four fingers. She had to go straight to emergency. The barrel bounced right over Rick Harrison as he led the ride. Fortunately, he is an expert rider and was able to avoid what could have led to a terrible and unfortunate incident. Thankfully no one was hurt and he was a good sport about it. These are the moments that make a story even more memorable but I can sure do without.

As a child, Rick had epilepsy. Harrison is now a spokesperson for the Epilepsy Foundation and is dedicated to a mission of bringing greater attention to the need for epilepsy awareness. During our interview he said he credits having the disease as part of his success in business. He missed a lot of school due to his illness and used to read a lot of books in bed. “It is more common than people think. One in 26 Americans will be affected by it.”

Pawn Stars is an American reality TV series that originated on the History Channel and is one of the network’s highest rated shows. It is shown in 150 countries and over thirty languages. The show has had fifteen seasons with over 500 episodes! If you get a chance next time you are in Vegas, stop in and see items being sold or pawned. They have had numerous local experts on the show, a couple of whom have become stars in their own right with spin-off shows of their own. Sadly, Pawn Stars patriarch Richard “Old Man” Harrison passed away in June of this year, and will be missed by all.

Las Vegas BikeFest moved its location this year to the Las Vegas Events Center in the heart of fabulous downtown Las Vegas. I heard many locals talking about the move and how much more convenient the access was. It really put you in the best area of historic old school Sin City. Until next year LVBF! Thanks for an exciting weekend.

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