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Thread: Bike Week in Florida

  1. #1
    Kawa Afterthought weschmann's Avatar
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    Bike Week in Florida

    Bike week is coming up just around the corner in Daytona, and I am wondering if this is mostly a Harley event, or if any BMW clubs in the area sponsor any events for beemers? I've never gone to bike week, but have done the Sturgis experience (once was enough), and if I recall, at the October bike week there was a coast to coast off road ride for adventure riders. Any one going? Any additional information would be welcome!

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    Registered User greenwald's Avatar
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    Cool

    I spent 5 days at Bike Week in 2004. Enjoyed the experience, but have not gone back - trust me, back then already, it was primarily a Harley experience, and has grown even more since, after speaking to fellow Motor Officers who did make return visits.

    If you hadn't done Sturgis, I'd would have advised going, just for the grins and giggles.

    But if you didn't enjoy Sturgis, Daytona Bike Week may very well disappoint you.

    Sorry.
    Kevin Greenwald - MSF RiderCoach # 121656 (BRC,SBRC,IS,IME,SMARTrainer)
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    George K1200RS GeorgeR1200RT's Avatar
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    Are you interested in going to the races or to experience the cultural dynamics of Bike Week.

    I rode to Bike Week from where I lived in Michigan, Illinois and Ohio. The rides to Daytona were interesting and could be challenging at that time of the year.

    I camped at the site hosted back then by the local BMW club. The campsite was an enjoyable experience, but became very noisy when the bars closed.

    I found the culture interesting, but not my thing and normally departed after a day for the Florida Keys. I am not in to the races.

    The first time down, I rode my R75/5 of the sandy beach. that is not allowed anymore. The vendors have lots of interesting things to sell...virtually none that I would compare to the safe equipment sold at a BMWMOA International Rally.

    I was never given a bad time as a BMW rather than Harley rider. My perception was most people were there with friends and I was largely ignored.

    I have not been back for many years.

    On the other hand, a good friend and BMW rider regularly goes to the races and seems to have a great experience.
    George
    R1200RT, K1200RS. Previous K1200LT, R80RT, R100R, R75/5

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    Not to step on any toes but there is some misinformation in these 3 posts.

    Sturgis and Daytona Bike Week don't really compare. Sturgis is a much more "focused" event. Main Street and the various biker bars in the Daytona area are the main comparison.

    Bike Week is not just Daytona. There are motorcycle activities from South Georgia to Cape Canaveral and Daytona to Orlando. Every form of motorcycle competition is available within this area. Every segment of motorcycling is represented somewhere within this area.

    You can still ride on the beach just not the Daytona beach you have to go south to New Smyrna Beach.

    Our typical trip to Bike Week includes; historic sight seeing, St. Augustine, Cape Canaveral, state parks; a couple of hours on Main Street (people watching mostly); buying helmets and gear at reduced prices (not just at the Speedway but at various shopping centers taken over for the week); we like flat track racing and always attend 1 of the 2 races that begin the flat track season; riding the Daytona loop (Google it); visiting the major motorcycle brands for test rides (including BMW); take in the antique motorcycle scene in Deland; and eating copious quantities of seafood.

    The biggest problem is that with so much going on during the 10 days of Bike Week there's no one source of information. I've heard rumors of motorcycle demolition derbies but haven't found them. Have seen coleslaw wrestling but don't recommend it.

    Plus the weather is usually nice.

  5. #5
    Registered User greenwald's Avatar
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    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by 59312 View Post
    Not to step on any toes but there is some misinformation in these 3 posts.

    Sturgis and Daytona Bike Week don't really compare. Sturgis is a much more "focused" event. Main Street and the various biker bars in the Daytona area are the main comparison.

    Bike Week is not just Daytona. There are motorcycle activities from South Georgia to Cape Canaveral and Daytona to Orlando. Every form of motorcycle competition is available within this area. Every segment of motorcycling is represented somewhere within this area.

    You can still ride on the beach just not the Daytona beach you have to go south to New Smyrna Beach.

    Our typical trip to Bike Week includes; historic sight seeing, St. Augustine, Cape Canaveral, state parks; a couple of hours on Main Street (people watching mostly); buying helmets and gear at reduced prices (not just at the Speedway but at various shopping centers taken over for the week); we like flat track racing and always attend 1 of the 2 races that begin the flat track season; riding the Daytona loop (Google it); visiting the major motorcycle brands for test rides (including BMW); take in the antique motorcycle scene in Deland; and eating copious quantities of seafood.

    The biggest problem is that with so much going on during the 10 days of Bike Week there's no one source of information. I've heard rumors of motorcycle demolition derbies but haven't found them. Have seen coleslaw wrestling but don't recommend it.

    Plus the weather is usually nice.
    And you didn't step on any toes (at least not mine, though with size 12 1/2 wides, I don't know how you missed them!).

    While I love Florida and plan to re-locate there soon, what you describe is not a week in Daytona, but rather a scenic trip all over southern Georgia and north-central Florida. While visits to our nation's oldest city (St. Augustine), the Space Coast, perhaps lunch in Orlando and running down to New Smyrna all have touring value, you're expanding the boundaries of "Bike Week" to the stretching point.

    The OP inquired specifically about Daytona, and little has changed since 2004. I too witnessed the 'slaw wrestling,' and though I saw no 'demolition derbies,' I did view the 'Honda Drop,' a daily ritual where a Honda motorcycle is raised high on a crane, and then to the cheers of the predominantly Harley crowd, dropped to smash into pieces when it impacts the cement below. A tad juvenile, but an enduring tradition.

    If he's been to Sturgis, Daytona will seem tame, but hardly present much new unless you score tickets to the races (demo's from most manufacturers {including BMW} originate on the raceway property to the north).

    We agree that there is much to see and do in the Sunshine State - just thought you were a bit liberal with your geography of "Bike Week."
    Kevin Greenwald - MSF RiderCoach # 121656 (BRC,SBRC,IS,IME,SMARTrainer)
    Nationally Certified Law Enforcement Motor Officer (Ret.) / IBA Member #34281
    Motorcycle & High Performance Driving Instructor - ROAD AMERICA Race Track

  6. #6
    Registered User flyhi2cfar's Avatar
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    Its entertainment & relaxation....

    ....and some pretty good shopping. You could skip the main street scene... but for a couple hours, if you've never been there... I wouldn't! Flat track, moto X, AND speedway racing... wow!
    Swap meets beyond belief... though mostly V twin parts. If your not from Florida, the riding outside of Daytona itself can be really enjoyable. Try US 1 south of New Smyrna to/across the Space Center.. or A1A most anywhere North & South on day rides. The loop and a trip out North & West... Mt Dora, Astor Park... nice. The week can go by quickly... lots to do.
    The FLAirheads (FL Airhead club) and Poverty Riders still coordinate a weekly camp at Holiday Travel Park near Bunell. And that offers a fine choice of riding to the BMW Shop. If the roadsign says Riverside Drive anywhere in FL... take it for a slow, scenic meander. Just like the Black Hills Rally... Daytona, like Sturgis itself... is only a certain element of the event.
    Quiet camping & quaint main street... New Smyrna.

    "travel'n" john

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    Boxer n Cruiser jfmoore430's Avatar
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    Went last year and going again this year to see the races!

    Quote Originally Posted by weschmann View Post
    Bike week is coming up just around the corner in Daytona, and I am wondering if this is mostly a Harley event, or if any BMW clubs in the area sponsor any events for beemers? I've never gone to bike week, but have done the Sturgis experience (once was enough), and if I recall, at the October bike week there was a coast to coast off road ride for adventure riders. Any one going? Any additional information would be welcome!
    Probably 90% HD but everyone greeted the various makes with respect. I enjoyed it last year and the weather was great as a break from the NC winter, not to tough. lots to do if you are not focused on HD and Daytona. Don't ride after 9PM, too many drunks! BMW didn't have demo rides or a tent last year but I rode a number of other bikes and had a great time. Even considering buying one of them. Hope to demo a Honda CTX this year. Some of the regional BMW clubs have tied up campgrounds for their groups but I don't know how to find them maybe under the trip reports for the SE. Go, have fun!
    John

    2011 BMW R1200 GSA
    2009 BMW G650 GS

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    Lots of information here - and the one thing I am curious about is this idea of: COLESLAW WRESTLING?

    Like, people wrestle in a vat of coleslaw? Or is Coleslaw a code word for something else.

    Whoa...

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    Quote Originally Posted by sapphireblue View Post
    Lots of information here - and the one thing I am curious about is this idea of: COLESLAW WRESTLING?

    Like, people wrestle in a vat of coleslaw? Or is Coleslaw a code word for something else.

    Whoa...
    There is a place called the Cabbage Patch west of New Smyrna Beach. Used to be a cabbage farm and still smells like one. Now it's a has several bars, food, leather, chrome, and t-shirt vendors and a pit that they fill with coleslaw and have women wrestle.

  10. #10
    Kawa Afterthought weschmann's Avatar
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    Thanks to everyone for the response. I had planned on going down to Texas Hill Country in February, but that didn't work out, so Florida looks like the next best possibility. I've got to get on the scoreboard for this year soon, or I'm going to go nuts. I just signed up for a GS training session through Gateway BMW in St. Louis, but that's not until the latter part of April.... so we'll see what shakes out!

  11. #11
    MOA,RA,ABC,AMA,TT,MOAL brownie's Avatar
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    Unhappy Trailer Week

    Days are gone when there was a large BMW campground area + an excellent Airhead campout....suspect none of it remains.....99% "biker" showboats & wannabes....it's mostly about black leather "uniforms,tats, and bare women"......little for motorcyclists.......track is excellent...always loved the vintage races!!! My $0.02.....
    Heed NEAD: No Egos, Attitudes, Distractions!!!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by weschmann View Post
    Bike week is coming up just around the corner in Daytona, and I am wondering if this is mostly a Harley event, or if any BMW clubs in the area sponsor any events for beemers? I've never gone to bike week, but have done the Sturgis experience (once was enough), and if I recall, at the October bike week there was a coast to coast off road ride for adventure riders. Any one going? Any additional information would be welcome!
    Weschmann, here is the info on the coast to coast off road ride for adventure riders, I believe you should just add your name to the list of attending so that they know how many roll charts to make. I think the coast to coast adv ride is only in March, but I could be wrong.

    http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1031663

    I am a BMW Motorcyclist NOT a biker and my buddy and I take the kids ages 11,10,9 and 7 to the event every year. We drive up and go mostly to the speedway and the kids ohh and ahh at the crazy custom bikes, collect hats and stickers from the vendors and we eat some junk food since the wives are not there and looking over our shoulders (LOL)

    Every other year we go to main street and hang out a bit or visit the BMW shop in Daytona just to stop in and see what is going on.

    I passed a few miles from Sturgis a few years ago on one of my trips during bike week and was about 15 miles away and had not interest in stopping in. Not that I am against that crowed, I just did not feel like I would fit in. Plus I had to make it to Seattle and was limited on time. (That's my story and I am sticking to it )

    Paul

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    Quote Originally Posted by brownie View Post
    Days are gone when there was a large BMW campground area + an excellent Airhead campout....suspect none of it remains.....99% "biker" showboats & wannabes....it's mostly about black leather "uniforms,tats, and bare women"......little for motorcyclists.......track is excellent...always loved the vintage races!!! My $0.02.....
    Bummer the campground thing no longer happens.... in was thinking of going this year. Have only been to Laconia years ago on my klr650.

  14. #14
    Registered User kz1000ken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pauleknight View Post
    I am a BMW Motorcyclist NOT a biker
    I ride a BMW

    I wear a full face helmet, and ATTGAT.

    I am a biker, I ride a bike. Sometimes I pedal it, sometimes I throttle it.

    The tattooed , helmetless fat guy on a croozer is not the only flavor of Biker. :-)
    1978 R100RS , 1983 R80RT, 1998 R1100RT, 2000 ZRX1100, 2013 FLHRC
    I don't need an intervention, I need a bigger garage.

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