There was so much going on at the Indiana Motorcycle Show this last weekend, held at the Indiana Fair Grounds, off 38th St. Between exhibits, accessories for sale and speakers, this event could easily tie up your day-or two. My colleague and I made the rounds in about 45 minutes, then went back around again. We also quickly wandered through the adjacent RV, fishing, boat show that was tremendous. We kept remarking how much work these vendors have setting up displays.
As expected, there is a lot of information disseminated at the Motorcycle Show, between local vendors, experts and famous personalties in the motorcyle world, it's a must-attend event if you're a motorcyle fanatic. Even if you're just someone with an avid interest and appreciation for all things motorcyle, you'll get a lot for your money at the Indiana Motorcycle Show.
The show took place in the Champions Pavilion area (far end) this past Saturday and Sunday, at the Indiana Fair Grounds. Some of the events and demos available were 2018 Biker's Showcase Cruisers: Indiana and Beyond, Pioneers of Hoosier Motorcycling, Abate Motorcycle Classes, and Barn Finds to Forgotten Treasures.
We found the Barn Finds fascinating and really enjoyed checking out all the oldies from years past that someone found somewhere. Every so often, you'll hear of another fantastic 'barn find.' Just recently, I watched a YouTube video about a find of an unusual 1960s Corvette Stingray, up on blocks, and covered by a fallen barn roof. Luckily, the person who stored it 40+ years ago had taken every precaution: Removed the engine, removed the tires and put the car on blocks, and stored the parts in a vault-like container!
Jeff Leveridge, owner of Leveridge Motorcycle Salvage, is one of the most successful collectors of barn finds in Indiana. His display included authentic barn finds just as he found them at sites all across Indiana. Jeff was on hand to answer questions for show goers.
Anyone who is an aficionado, enjoys these 'finds,' and wishes to one day come across one herself. Of course, you have to know what you're looking for, be able to pay for it (and know what to offer), as well as have a trailer to tow it.
Some of the famous folks in motorcyling who were on hand at the largest indoor event in Indy were Tim Weaver, one of the millions of baby boomers who drove the explosion of motorcycle popularity. As a part-time mechanic, Tim achieved his goal of a national hillclimb championship at the 500+ foot hill at Bay city, Wisconsin in 1986.
Other notables included Duane Begley, Bob Schulteti, Larry Roberts and Russ Vanderveen. My intention was to return to the show on Sunday to spend some time speaking with some of the members of HOG (Harley Owner's Group). This I would have enjoyed, as the Harley Owner's Group is the largest factory-sponsored motorcycle club in the world with over 1 million members. Created in 1983, the group fosters riding and the making of lasting friendships.
We were on hand to see the Tiny Tots Riding Experience. Future Harley riders out there on their look-alike motorcycles with training wheels was a hoot.
Of course, when attending the Indiana Motorcyle Show, you wouldn't want to miss the gear and accessories. You name it, they make it. Also enjoyed were the displays of many of the infamous motorcycle trails and roads all across the U.S.
When it comes to motorcycle brands, the one that stands out above all, of course, is Harley Davidson. Although they don't have a monopoly on the market, they have dominated the motorcycle market since 2008. And, although sales have fallen since 2007, with the exception of 2013 (up 4.4 percent), their demographic remains the baby boomers. Sales are expected to decline (for several reasons) with maturing Gen Xer's and millenials in the coming decades.
California alone has over 800,000 registered motorcycle users. Caucasian women above the age of 35 are nine times more likely to purchase a Harley; African Americans are five times more likely, and Hispanics, six times more likely. Projected motorcycle sales in North America for 2018 are 1,930,000! And, Harley gear outsells motorcycles.
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