Monday, November 30, 2009

Turkey Rod Run 2009

It's that time of year. Time to kill Turkeys, fight with families and time to drive to Daytona Beach for the Turkey Rod Run. (now just called the Turkey Run) Daytona Beach is known the world over for Bike Week. Most folks think of Bike Week as a continuous party of wild bikers mixed with Doctors and Lawyers pretending to be wild bikers. They seldom realize that a legitimate motorcycle racing event is happening at the most famous racetrack in the world just up the road. These AMA races were the original reason bikers would converge on Daytona. The late night parties and social events were what happened when the track closed, and eventually Bike Week would become just as much about making friends and exchanging ideas as the races themselves. The Turkey Run, for us, seems to be following a similar path.

So we ride out bright and early and show up to the track at 10:00 A.M. on Saturday. Riding through the gate our timing could have not been any better. Just as we all get in, along come a bunch of like minded folks from Miami, headed up by our friend and Florida custom car magician, Yaril of Yarils Customs. We all cruise in together making our way through the ocean of cars and pedestrians, low to the ground like hunting sharks. Greg Pellicer did a great job with H.A.M.B. parking and we easily settled into the chaos.

The weather is perfect and a day of meeting people, talking shit, and buying parts ensues. The Turkey run is nothing less than an ocean of automotive everything. Seeing everything in a day is impossible and a shaded home base is necessary for a good experience. Going back and forth from the swapmeet to the camp we see a lot of old friends. Guys from the Rumblers, Poorboys, Draglinks, Savages, ect... all stop by for a laugh and to discuss after plans. Tired from a day of driving and walking, we're just getting started. Time to get to the Hotel and regroup.

Originally the Turkey Rod Run was based at a hotel on the Beach called the LaPlaya; and the hotel, and the Plaza parking lot across the street, is still the place to be when the track closes. We head over to the plaza and the crowd is overwhelming. The cars are the same as they where at the track (less in numbers due to space) but the vibe is more about cruising than showing and the mood is more party than business. Inevitably we see a lot of friends at the Plaza and the shit talking and partying pick up a notch. Night time, the crowd, revving motors, parking lot pinstriping and music all add to the circus like atmosphere, and the controlled chaos is exciting. When we feel the energy peek, we decide it's time to move on and cruise A1A and then out to old friend, Draglink and Daytona legend, Fizzy's house for the annual after party. At this point it's time for the cars to stay in the driveway. The scene is more about hanging out with old friends and enjoying the warmth of the bonfire. The hosts are more than welcoming and there reputations,as good as they are, still don't do them justice. Thank you again for your awesome hospitality.

Feeling total success, it's time to wrap it up. It's time to head back to the hotel, get some sleep, wake up and reflect on the weekend during the pleasant ride home. The Turkey Run is more than just a big swap meet. It's an event that draws like minded car enthusiasts together, and a backdrop for the memories you'll be telling for years to come. See you at the Rumblers show Feb. 6 at Cowboys in Orlando.

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