TACOMA, WA — This past April saw the 18th staging of what has become “THE” indoor show to attend in western Washington. It was also the last one for its long time creator, owner and promoter, Chas Marten. He retired the day after the show ended. Not to worry as he sold the show to a long time employee and friend, and it will be back in 2009 and for years to come.
Our very own Arlin Harmon built a special Elvis Tribute bike for the show in honor of Chas’ last year. The cool thing is that it was done out of all spare parts and a traded in motor that he had hanging around his shop! Check it out, its mind bogglingly gorgeous and harkens back to the 50’s influence that brought us Elvis, Marilyn, rock & roll and a host of other good things. The amazing paint and murals were done by Illusions Custom Paint in Tacoma. Dubbed “The Rebel”, it only takes one look to see why This year as in the past few years, Mild to Wild has been combined with “The World of Motorcycles” to create a huge double show of some 200,000 square feet of vendors, cars, bikes, bands and people. Great idea and a great show although I think I would prefer more inter action between cars and bikes being mixed on the show floor versis being separated into 2 different areas. More flow that way and it breaks up the sea of eye candy. Just a thought. Admission was a great deal particularly if you used the $3.00 discount coupon courtesy of Quick Throttle magazine and found conveniently in our April issue.
Parking for motorcycles was free on Saturday but if you drove in the nearby lots were up to $8.00 bucks a pop which for the Tacoma area is bull! I will not mention the concessions which continue to raise prices at an alarming rate especially for warmed up crap! Sadly despite bitching by one and all including the promoter this along with the parking will not change.
Now here is what I really didn’t like: Whose idea was it to take $2.00 out of every ticket sold as a donation to the New LeMay Auto Museum and not say anything to the ticket buying public? Since a large portion of the attendees were riders I think this behind the scenes deal will not set very well at all. I sure didn’t like it! We are looking into this back room deal and will keep you posted. Sadly this as well as the concession prices, parking, and the rising gas prices certainly took their toll and attendance was down this year although not dramatically. We feel that the “Dome,” Qwest Field Exhibition Hall and other similar venues need to be more aware of the changing economic times not only of their attendees but of the promoters who use their facilities and give us all a break! $5.00 pretzels, $8.00 parking and $4.00 a gallon gas don’t go together in these tough times!