By Chris Oggerino
June 30th, 2018, I had the opportunity to take a cruise to California to check out the 2nd anniversary celebration of Yuba City Harley-Davidson. In case you’re not familiar, Yuba City is about a 45-minute drive directly north of Sacramento.
I didn’t really know what to expect at an event like this, because my usual coverage is of much larger events like Street Vibrations in Reno, Nevada. I did know that I was going to talk with Matt Ensor, the sales manager, and there were going to be bands and food. I arrive about ten minutes early, and was somewhat surprised. You see, there were a lot of motorcycles parked in front of the shop, on the street, around the side of the shop and so forth. The main parking lot was blocked off and there was a stage at one end of the parking lot. So, I drove around the back and found there was a bunch of parking right nearby and I could see the service entrance from there. So, I walked in and was greeted by a nice young lady named Trish. And, this is where my pleasant day started.
I explained to Trish that I was here to check out their event for Quick Throttle Magazine, take some pictures, and that I was looking for Matt. She was very nice and friendly and, in a display of really good customer service, didn’t just point me “down that hallway.”” Instead, she brought me through the building and made sure I found Matt. As a customer service oriented kind of person, I really appreciated that. Thanks Trish!
Matt Ensor is a charismatic guy, who had some interesting things to say and which I hope, by the end of this little article, you appreciate like I do. As you read this, I hope you look at the pictures and see some of the things that confirm what Matt told me. Those three things were around family, community and a huge selection of inventory. And, all three of those things were well proven throughout the day.
First and foremost, Yuba City Harley-Davidson is a family place. And I don’t mean, you can bring your kids there and they won’t be mean to them. I mean, they really support the youth both at the dealership and in the community. First, it was a pleasure to see a bunch of kids playing corn hole using the Harley-Davidson corn hole games. But, that was just the beginning.
Right in the middle of everything, and very much a part of the day, was the local youth football and cheer team, “The East Nicolas Jr. Spartans.” It turns out that Yuba City H-D does a fair bit to support both the football players and cheerleaders. Now, I have to say, both of my kids were involved with this: my son played football and my daughter cheered. So, maybe I’m biased, but the fact that they support youth sports and help out these kids makes them pretty awesome in my book. I think both of my kids learned a lot from the years they participated in youth football/cheer and it’s really only possible with support from the local community – from folks like Matt and his team at YCHD.
There’s more. I’m not just going to talk about the kids and call it a family place. There were kids of all ages present. I want to introduce you to another person I had the pleasure of meeting. Having spent some time taking pictures and walking around observing the activities, I thought it might be nice to sit down for a bit.
In the service department lounge, I saw that there were a couple extra chairs at a table where a man was sitting with a “Vietnam Veteran” hat on. I figured I would see if this patriot would let me join him. His goes by the name “Doc,” and was happy to have some company. His son and grandkids wouldn’t show up until a little later in the day. We had a nice talk about various experiences he has had as a veteran and, of course, motorcycling. He was clearly a regular there at the shop. As it turns out, Doc is one of those guys who puts a lot miles on his motorcycle. My guess is that he’s a regular at the shop for tune-ups. At one point, there were three generations sitting at that table in the service area and everybody was having a great time.
The third thing that Matt talked to me about was selection. YBHD has over 200 bikes in stock. And, they are business-connected to two other locations, which brings their total bike count to well over 500 bikes. If you can’t find a bike at this place, you’re not really interested! They had bikes that look like flat-trackers. They had limited edition cruisers (If only I had the money!). And they had everything in between. If you stop by and don’t think there are a lot of bikes in front of and in the store, ask for a quick trip back to the warehouse. There’s an entire large building filled with rows and rows of motorcycles. It’s actually pretty darned amazing.
OK, so before I end up using all my space about the dealership and its attributes, I better talk a little bit about the celebration events. So, band, raffles, food, and fun.
There were two bands. The Swankmasters and Mudstone. Both bands played a variety of classic rock songs. And, interestingly enough, the guitar player for both bands was Justin, who just happens to be a totally rocking tech in their shop – according to the management. So, not only can you get some great work done by Justin, you can hear some good guitar playing if you’re in the right place at the right time.
The Swankmasters kicked things off around 11:30. And, the next big event was lunch. And let me just tell you, YBHD knows how to serve lunch! Two roasted pigs, chicken, ribs, fixings and more. I didn’t jump right in line because I wanted to take a couple pictures of folks getting food. Everybody was walking away with a large plate of food. The kids had big eyes and were in second heaven going after all the great eats. After a while, I jumped in and piled my own plate with an assortment of goodies. It was one of the highlights of the day. If you see they’re doing a free BBQ, my advice is to stop by, eat and check out some bikes.
After a while The Swankmasters yielded the stage to Mudstone and the fun continued. Somewhere around 2:30 or so, the raffle started. I don’t have a full list of stuff. But, there were at least three or four nice guns, five or so baskets from YBHD and grand prize was a backyard patio set. The couple that won the backyard set was so happy I thought she was going to cry. They must have done something nice recently. Because, only good karma makes that kind of thing happen; where the people who really want it win it.
So, as I close up this article, let me just summarize what I saw at Yuba City Harley-Davidson. The staff is friendly. The location is clean, large and customer friendly. They have the biggest selection of motorcycles I’ve even seen. They know how to throw a party for the whole family. If you get the chance, you should stop by and pay them a visit. Tell them Quick Throttle Magazine sent you and ask for a tour of the warehouse.
Be sure to check out Yuba City Harley’s sister stores too– Redwood Harley-Davidson in Eureka, California, and the newly-acquired Reno Harley-Davidson in Reno, Nevada.