If there is one thing that transcends race, ethnicity, gender, age and social status it’s a passion for motorcycles. On Sunday, January 17, several dozen bike enthusiasts gathered on Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard in Brooksville for a day of fun, food, music, and showing off their prized possessions. Bikers from the area and those from other parts of the state, including Orlando and Tampa, gathered to swap stories and show off their shiny bikes with their awesome sound systems. Prizes were awarded in various categories. To the sound of roaring bikes and ear-splitting music, the crowd enjoyed the festivities. The event was organized by Ann Williams, a local motorcyclist who has been riding since she was fifteen years old.
Vendors showed up to sell motorcycle accessories, jewelry, and other items, as well as food. One of the food vendors, Regina Ferguson, who owns Regina’s Catering was busy cooking up and serving fish, French fries, and boiled peanuts. Pee Wee’s Barbeque & More served up delicious helpings of ribs and other BBQ. Niecy Williams, who specializes in catering, parties, and special events sold beverages of all flavors, while Chantel Johnson offered other treats. Melisa Jones, displayed jewelry and other items for sale through her home-based arts and crafts business, S & S Designs, specializing in unique home and office décor.
Of course, I can’t neglect to mention the folks whose primary reason for being at the event was their passion for motorcycles. Gio Carbello from Orlando was there with his candy apple red Victory Cross Country bike. Carbello has been riding since he was a child. On the other hand, “newbie” Veronique Sims from Bradenton has only been riding since August. You could tell she was proud of her Harley, “Lili.” Mike Johnson from Ruskin has been riding his Ryker BRP bike for eight months, while Mike McCoy from Tampa on his aptly-named bike “Big Mike” has had six years’ experience. He’s a member of a 100-member motorcycle club called the Venom Riders.
As long as there are motorcycle riders there will be bike rallies – large and small. The rally held this past weekend showed that people, in general, have more in common than you would think.