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Hi Gang;
Well, since there were only 5 Scoots there, counting me, you can guess it wasn't great being a vendor <G>. Bill came by. He has a Burg 650 and a 400 with over 20,000 miles. He came by the booth and I installed a signal beeper, and a lady with a 400 Burg came by for the same thing. That was pretty much all there was business wise for Scoots. I sold about a dozen O-Ring cruise controls. (Thanks Pauljo!) but at $3 each, it wasn't even a dent in the $300 booth space or the $360 RV gas bill. Live and learn. But, the event itself... Thousands of bikes, as you might expect.. I guessing 65% Harley, 30% Goldwings, 4.5% others, (V-8;s, trikes, custom choppers, even a V-6 Ricshaw!) Great for seeing what folks can dream up and then even construct.
The roads around the area were in terrific shape and the state was adding an additional set of lanes to the main highway from Roswell to Ruidoso. Nice touch, when the rally was over, the highway construction company reconfiguered the lighted construction signs to say "BIKERS CAUTION!! WATCH FOR POTHOLES". There weren't any, but it was a nice thought on thier part.
The weather was great. Mon-Sat the weather was high 70's-low 80's during the day, very few clouds.... (8-10 degrees cooler in the shade) and high 40's to mid 50's at night. There was a few very brief sprinkle showers but nothing held around long.
Budweiser pulled in with a 4 semi trailer setup to have a "Experience" thing, with shows every 30 minutes. It seemed to be good but as a vendor we weren't allowed in without a Rally pass.
The main gathering point during the day was the Cowboy Stables Theather area. an 80,000 sq ft covered pavilion. Big food court , complete with an open air Karioke (SP?) session from 10:00 am - 6:00 every day. Ya'd be surprised how quick some of those HD riders can have a few too many to drink and then proceed to convince themselves that they're as good as Tom Jones. Not that I mind a good time, but tipsy by 11:00 am? hmmm
We stayed at a nice homey little RV park right downtown and so had the V-
Twin concert till about 3:00 am every night. I don't remember a night without sirens... Never heard about any accidents, but it was bound to happen. For those that haven't been to Ruidoso, it's a horse racing town, with Skiing being the main draw in the Winter. There are two M/C rallys each year. One in May, called the "A$penCa$h motorcycle Rally"... the "$" are their idea, not mine. It's supposed to draw 20-30 thousand.. Wonder why the call it the aspenCA$H rally? Then of course in Sept, the Golden Aspen rally. 35-38 thousand registered folks. <G> so One is the "Cash" rally and the other is the "Golden" rally. The town folks went out of thier way to make folks comfortable. Discounts everywhere for showing a pass, 2 for 1 hamburgers at a few places etc etc. Great , really nice rides around the area. elevation in the 6000-9000 range so, out of the direct sun, it was cool, and at night quickly chilled, but during the day was perfect.
If I go again, I'll just grab one of the benches downtown and watch the show. I arrived early Tuesday morning, and folks were trickling in, but by Thursday night, you KNEW there was a gathering. By Sat afternoon, locals had surrendered and the tourist area downtown was wall to wall bikes.
Everyday there were bike judgings for something. I got tired of checking in so don't have info about that stuff. Saw lots of $ 30,000 + two wheelers. Lots of V-8 two wheelers, lots of $25,000 + trikes. But.... at the show, my 650 Burgman was a show stopper. If I had a dollar for everyone that asked questions, or wanted to sit on it, I'd have made a profit. In fact, I almost sold mine to a "wanna get one right away" fella. I wish I could bill Suzuki and Honda for all the time I spent doings product overviews for them. I had my 650 in the booth as a product base, and most folks thought I was there promoting the bike and they were more than a little interested. A few of them "knew" about the 650's and lauded the bike. Stating that most of the time all they saw was the back of them as they were pulling away from the pack <G>.
I packed up Sunday morning, pulled out about 11:00 and arrived back in Austin before midnight. Throughly disappointed with the lack of brother riders.. That's led to my decision to start a Centex Scooter gathering. More to come...
Jac
http://www.rvtoys.net
 

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Thanks Jac. I'm pretty sure that you'd find the same lack of scooters at Sturgis, or Laconia, or Daytona - any of the traditional Harley based motorcycle rallys. This will probably change, but slowly.

One thing I liked about Scootercade was the absence of alcohol. Drinking and riding are a bad mix, but you always find it at the big bike rallys - particularly where the Harley crowd gathers. The other rally I've attended that was real nice was Americade, at Lake George, NY. Primarily a touring crowd - and I'd bet that the bigger scooters probably do have some presence there, but not enough to justify a trip up from Texas for a vendor. I'm also wondering if some wouldn't be at the "Honda Hoot" rally, since Honda does make the Silver Wing.

But there will be more scooter-specific rallys. Scootercade has been around for a long time. There is also a similar rally held in Washington State. Some folks got a small rally going in Pennsylvania just recently. You are talking about doing one in Texas. We've got a US magazine devoted to scooters now "Scooter Rider Magazine". That's another place you could advertise your new rally (and your products). BJ Strauss, the editor, was at Scootercade - you may have met him. Anyway, I think we'll have more than enough rallys to attend soon, without doing the 85% Harley scenes.
 
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