Sunday, November 15, 2009

Toy Run

November 1, 2009 Our local scooter club, now known as the "Wichita Twisters" held its monthly ride. It was decided that we participate in the local Marine Corps Toys for Tots Ride. So in a manner of speaking we decided to join the Harleys and other bikers in this annual event. It was something different. I had never done anything like this before. I didn't have a clue what to expect. I really did not expect to see 3,200 motorcycles participate. Yeah, you saw that right! 3,200 motorcycles Various shapes sizes and types. I would guess about 90% Harleys. But 18 of that total was from the local scooter club. Actually one of our largest turnouts for a scooter club ride. Here is Max with a present safely stored on the purse hook.
The scooter club met at a parking lot across the street from the baseball stadium where the line up for the main ride was to be happening. We wanted to ride in together and line up together.
We had some new faces this month to join us on the ride.
Here's a few riding up to join us. A couple of new scoots joined us as well. This one is a Kymco Xciting 250 if I remember correctly.
Now you have to look carefully at the scooter on the left.
This little guy gets to ride up front on his scooter and has a great view of the surroundings.
The first canine member of the club.
Then, Gary, who manages our website, tried to spoil the fun by carrying the Grinch with him. Just kidding Gary, that Grinch came in very handy later that morning.
The line up for the ride started about 10:00. As people rolled in, they were directed to park their motorcycles in lines throughout the parking lot of the baseball stadium. I thought we were way back in line when we got there, but as it turned out we were only probably 20% back from the starters. I had no idea how many bikes there would be. A proverbial sea of motorcycles.
And here is where we lined up.
There was a group of marines chatting with some of the riders. They help sponsor the event. The event helps out various local charitable groups such as the Salvation Army and the local FoodBank. It really is a good cause. Something that some of us in the scooter club hoped to get involved with.
This lady was helping people to get parked and in line. They had us really close together. I just liked her colorful outfit. The organizers had the procedures well thought out and did their jobs efficiently.
There are a lot of pictures in this post. Some unusual bikes, some more ordinary, some Trikes and other custom bikes. It was actually a bit difficult to get good pictures because everybody was parked so close together. But I tried. I attempted to get pictures of some of the more unusual bikes. As soon as we got parked, we had a lot of time to walk around and take pictures. There were food and drink vendors. Lots of people seemed to have a good time visiting with other people
I grabbed the camera and headed around the area to take some pictures. After being gone from the location where Max was lined up, I realized that I hadn't made myself a very good mental note of where we ended up. Had a little trouble finding where we were, but eventually saw the Grinch on Gary's Burgman and knew I wasn't far away.
A Yamaha, I think. Very nice.
A dirt bike. Didn't see too many of these, but there were a few.
A Goldwing with a pretty fancy paint job. (and a trailer hitch)
And here is the reason for the trailer hitch. Some new bicycles to be delivered to some needy and hopefully appreciative kids.
A very unusual trike. I like the smiley face.
A Chopper
Another trike. I think those rear tires are bigger than the ones on my car.
Another view of the "ocean" of bikes. It was a beautiful day. Temps in the low 60's. A pretty good south breeze, but not bad. We were to ride north.
Another trike with a rather bored looking woman. Lots of storage though.
A very nice set of toys strapped to this bike.
There were some sport bikes as well.
And then there are the Masons that seem to have an opinion about proper attire while riding.
Another nice Yamaha, apparently modified a bit.
A Harley with sawed off pipes. I didn't stick around to see how loud it was.
And there is always stuffed animals.
Another fancy GoldWing with an albino tiger.
And here is Max amidst the sea of bikes. I was standing a few feet away when I heard a passerby say, "Look, A Moped!
Well I have to admit taking a bit of an offense to that. In my opinion a true Moped would have pedals. But no matter, just another example of the misuse of the English language.
A Honda trike
This chopper is made here in Wichita by a company called "Big Dog Motorcycles" I know a couple of people that work there. They produce mostly high end luxury type bikes, very expensive, in various configurations. They are struggling a bit recently with the state of the economy and have laid off some people, but still trying to hang in there.
For Conch and Lance, a very nice Triumph America.
The plan was to ride out to a sports arena just north of town to drop off the presents. Only about a 10 mile ride to the arena.
Here's a Victory. The Triumph dealer here sells these. Very unusual but nice looking bike.
I admit my knowledge of different types of bikes is wanting a bit. But I learned a lot today. This is the only bike I saw with a sidecar. Sorry, Dom, didn't see any Urals.
For that matter I didn't see any BMW's either. Maybe BMW riders are just a bit too snotty to take part in a charity event like this. Just kidding though. I bet there were some BMW's there, I just never found one. With 3,200 bikes in attendance, I am sure I didn't see them all.
Here's a Can Am trike. Two front wheels, one rear. The Ford dealer here in town sells these. I have seen a few around on occasion.
This beast garnered a lot of attention from onlookers. Has a V6 Chevy engine in it. Someone spent a lot of time on this one.
A view from the south end of the parking lot. The bikes were literally lined up clear to the buildings you can see in the background. An awesome sight.
The parade finally took off amidst a lot of loud engines, cigarette and cigar smoke and stereos blasting.
For many miles along the parade route people were at the side of the street waving us on. Was a bit unusual to take the streets we took and not have to stop at red lights. The police had closed all of the intersections along the way. Riders generally rode very carefully and politely. One lady at the side of the road tried to hand me a dollar bill for a donation. I was going a bit fast to try and do it on the run, plus I wasn't sure how to take it with my right hand. I am sure someone else stopped and accepted her donation.
The first bikes reached the arena north of town before all of the bikes had even left the original parking lot.
Bikers came from all over the local area. Many made a day of it by having breakfast first with friends, joining the ride, and then meeting up again later in the afternoon. A couple of local restaurants were giving out coupons for free hamburgers redeemable later that day.
Ahhh, people do some funny things for a good cause.
It was definately certainly something different to do.


  1. That would have been so awesome! Ride proud!

    Be careful about insulting BMW riders. Remember, that group includes people like Riepe!

  2. Dan,
    It really was not my intent to take a jab at BMW riders, but then again, maybe it was, too.
    I just was surprised not to see one that day. But then again, this is Harley country. There is a huge Harley dealer here in Wichita.
    There were a lot of bikes I didn't see that day, but our scooters were there, and I am proud of that.
    Thanks for commenting and take care.

  3. cpa3485:

    Maybe there aren't any BMW riders in your area, or perhaps they are all broken down, or they needed cinderblocks to get on or off their bikes and none were available.

    You could hardly find yourself in that sea of bikes

    bobskoot: wet coast scootin

  4. Bobskoot,
    I know there are some BMW's around here, but all manufacturers are far outnumbered by the Harleys. I have a client that has an R-1100 or something like that. It is an amazing looking bike.
    Thanks for stopping by.