Monday, June 15, 2009

June Scooter Club Rally & Our First Brush With The Law!

You gotta crawl before you walk. But we are starting to scoot along very nicely. We started a local Scooter club here in Wichita. We had our first get-together in May and had 14 riders. We rode around town a bit and then met up at a local coffee house for socializing. We had a good time and agreed to meet up again for another "rally" on June 7. We asked for a volunteer to maybe help set up a web site and Gary said he would do it for us. He did a wonderful job and if you care to see, here'e the link: As June 7th approached, lots of people had entered ideas about where to go, what to do, etc. We finally decided to go out to a local lake and have a "pot luck" picnic. The weather forecast was for HOT and sunny weather. Our gathering place is centrally located in town at the parking lot of the local baseball stadium. We parked the scooters in the shade and socialized a bit before heading out. The website designer is Gary, on the right in this picture.
Another gathering picture. We had 14 riders show up again, and 2 more met us out at the lake later. Had some new faces, too which was nice.
We have an interesting combination of scooters, some small, others pretty good size.
After a brief meeting we headed out in two groups. The plan was to go out west and hit some back roads and stay off the highways. Speeds mostly in the 40's.
Here's Kansas in June. The wheat is beginning to ripen. A lot of us are not very experienced in group riding. The people were very careful however, and there were no incidents. We even met up with a guy and his girlfriend on a KYMCO at a stop light and they rode with us for awhile. Didn't take a lot of pictures on the way out. Was having too much fun riding.
It is about 25 miles to the lake, not a long ride, but was nice.
We arrive at the lake. That's Max loaded down with a cooler in front of the topcase and other provisions hanging from the purse hook.
We were told by a phone call earlier in the week that even though this was a State Park, since we were just going out for a picnic, maybe a couple of hours or so, that we didn't need a permit for our vehicles.
Arriving at the picnic area
More arrivals. It was 94 degrees and sunny.
Then it was time to get down to the business of eating. People generally brought their own drinks and were asked to bring something else for the group. We had plenty of good food.
Eating and socializing
Scooters at the lake
Ah Yes, filling out the dreaded membership form. One thing we all agree on is No Dues and No Rules! The membership form is for contact information only.
Some clouds showed up, but was sort of a welcome relief. At least the sun wasn't beating down on us for part of the time.
Some people on the lake
A very nice Genuine Buddy Italia
This lady brought an Aprilla Mojito. It's about 5 years old, but she was able to get it with less than 1,000 miles on it. A very nice Scoot.
A Yamaha Morpheus
A Honda Reflex
A SYM RV 250
We had some pretty good size scooters on display.
We had some smaller ones also.
A Genuine Stella
Another Genuine Stella. These have a clutch and gears
A SYM HD 200. Just like mine except for color.
And a Vespa GTS (very nice) Now for the trouble with the authorities. I wasn't paying much attention when the Park Ranger showed up in his pickup truck. He, of course was looking for our permits ($3 per vehicle). We told him that we had called earlier in the week and was told that the permit would not be required if we were only to be there a very short time. He thought otherwise.
So two of our people booked it over to the park office and purchased permits for everybody. Not even sure who paid for them, but some good samaritan did.
Here's Lloyd displaying the new permits for us. And here's mine proudly displayed on my handlebar. It flew off on the way home.
We survived our brush with the authorities.
I decided to ride home by myself later that afternoon. Most of my riding is by myself, but sure have enjoyed the ability to ride with other people as well. We have an interesting group of people in the scooter club and there is much interest and ideas for future rides. We will probably start meeting for some weekly rides also.
For a scooter club that is only about 30 days old, we have come a very long way in a short period of time.
The ride home, even though it was solo, was very enjoyable also. We rode out at a pace of 35-45 mph most of the way, mainly to keep the group together. But on the ride home I was able to crank up the speed a bit and did well over 60 mph in a few spots. It was fun. My wife was going to call me on my cell phone if she saw that threatening weather might be headed our way. My blackberry can get to radar weather sites on the web, but I wasn't sure if I could get a good connection to the internet from the lake. Turned out it was no problem. As I rode home going east, I didn't notice an approaching storm behind me and by the time I got home, the clouds in the west were looking a bit ominous. As I pulled into the driveway, my cell phone rang. It was my wife warning me that I better get home. I was already there.


  1. Sounds like a nice gathering and a great day for building community!

    My motorcycle shop recently told me that if they ever have to keep my bike overnight, they would supply me with a scooter! I smiled. Never been on a scooter but it sounds like fun.

  2. Jim, sounds like a great bunch of riders in your club, although as your post shows, you're all a bunch of outlaws!!! :-)

  3. Sharon,
    There's no comparison between a scooter and the bike that you have. You could not do on a scooter what you do with your BMW. That said, you might surprise yourself by taking a ride sometime. Most of my travel is in town commuting to and from work. The scooter is an ideal way to get around for me. And they are a blast to drive.
    Thanks for the comments and take care,

  4. Lance,
    We actually were trying to be law abiding by calling ahead. We apparently just didn't talk with the right person. Since we are in the process of deciding on a final name for the club, I like your idea of the "Outlaws". Has a nice ring to it.
    Thanks for writing in,

  5. Dear CPA3485 (Jim);

    Congratulations on putting together a viable concern as a scooter club, getting up a website, and floating an interesting agenda -- all in 30 days! I am mazed at the diversity of scooters on the streets Wichita, which I would not think was a big scooter environment.

    I must confess that some of your future events sounded great to me. The camp-out sounds like a real good time but the night at the drive-in has incredible story potential. I can't image the reception a couple o dozen scooter riders would get pulling up at a drive-in theatre.

    I suggest you guys start looking into Kermit Chairs... These are easy to carry on your bike, or scooter, and are the height of camping or picnicing luxury.

    Once again, congratulations on making all of this work so well.

    Fondest regards,
    Jack "r"
    Twisted Roads

  6. Jack r, (toad?),
    I wished I had one of those chairs at the lake. After such a glowing report by you earlier this year, I know I should have picked one up. The drive in movie would be a hoot. One gal wasn't sure about it because she said she had never ridden at night. We tried to assure her that riding at night is a blast and relatively safe. Ideas are literally abounding about future rides some with a great deal of ambition to them.

    To me it is really an indication that scooterists here were sort of starving for a club. I had no idea it would take off like it has. Gary did a great job with a free website. We are still searching for a final name for the club and don't seem to be making much progress on that , yet.

    All I did was help get a few things and ideas going on the front end, and now various people are really taking off and running with the show.

    We are not where your group is yet, but it's starting to be a lot of fun and has fulfilled my desire to ride with some other people on occasion.

    Thanks for popping by, it's always appreciated.


  7. I can't get the scooter club page to load. Any idea if it's just me?


  8. Joe,
    Sometimes you get what you pay for. I tell people I don't know that ask me tax questions that free advice is worth what you pay for it.
    We have noticed intermittent problems with the site as well. Yesterday I couldn't get it to load in the morning, but it was fine in the afternoon.
    But it is free, so we are living with it for now.
    Thanks for popping by and keep trying.

  9. Sounds like a great outing to me! Great pics of some of the scooters....