Alabama enjoyed a rather warm winter, and because of that, there wasn’t a lot of down time for the bikers, but when we go to kick off bike nights, we start getting snow, freeze warnings, and rain! Go figure--we’re talking end of March and into April. Regardless, we got started as planned at the beginning of April, but it took a little longer for most of the rest of them and the weather to come around.
The Burly Earl was our first to kick off, and in the first few weeks we had a somewhat intimate crowd, but that can be nice too at times. Russell has done a very nice job of bringing in some good bands that have provided us with some really good tunes to listen to while we enjoy one of many great beer specials to go along with the great food that Burly Earl’s has been known for since “forever.” I get tickled by some of the people that have been around for “awhile.” (OK, so I know that we are part of that group.) But anyway, it’s still funny to hear people say, “Burly Earl’s? I remember them from YEARS ago. They had the best food.” Well, they still do. A lot of it is made right there, it is not frozen bar food, so it’s very fresh and oh so good! The prices can’t be beat, and for Bike Night, if we have at least 20 people show up any week, we will draw for a free dinner for two. Not bad!
I have to give the bands a shout out: “Dan & the Duster’s” (4/3) “Leonard Watkins” (4/10) & “65 South” (4/17). Now if you missed these guys (and most of you did), it was your loss, but hopefully you’ll be there when they come back! And Ms Joyce, well she just might end up a “Biker Chick” before everything is said and done!
Next on the hit parade was the Birmingham Greyhound Race Course. We started this year off with a built-in back-up date. We are doing Friday and Saturday night. What are the chances of the weather screwing up both nights in a row? Well, for us the chances were 100%. But we don’t get rained out at the track, we get rained in! With Club Quincy just inside, along with everything else, we have several options.
The Friday night bike night is supposed to have the band outside in the new band area under the front steps giving them a constant covered area. It just wasn’t happening that first Friday out, so the band set up and played inside at Club Quincy. Our first band for the 2008 season was “Chrome Rooster.” While everyone enjoyed the band, we were all still anxious to be outside and try out the new tiki bar that Scott had built for us. It’s so cool. But it was a little hard to get out there and check it out during the storms and rain that we experienced off and on that day. We were even wondering if it would hold up long enough for us to get the chance to play with our new toy!
We thought maybe Saturday we could get the band outside, but no, it wasn’t to be once again. “4th & One” was our second band of the new season, and most of us said to hell with the rain, we’ll drive up and party inside anyway. We had a nice little crowd in there, and thoroughly enjoyed the music, drinks and the company.
We ended up rescheduling the bike show that was planned for the opening weekend, to Saturday April 26, when we would have the Miller Lite car, along with the Miller Lite girls, and possibly the “Wild Turkey” girls.
The weather screwed us again the second weekend out, as we had to bring the band, “Cooter Brown” inside when they were supposed to be outside. And once again, we weren’t able to have any of our vendors around. The band was pretty good, and it’s just a good thing that they have them booked to come back, because there was hardly anyone there to hear them this time around. Bennie does a very good job lining up bands for Bike Night and Club Quincy, along with all of her other duties.
The second Saturday we were able to have the band outside on their newly created stage area. Thanks Chris, you did a great job! So “Cowboy Up” was the first band to initiate the stage. We had a handful to brave the cold and hang out with them a while. The Miller Lite girls had shown up as well and they were freezing!
The next band out (Chaser) was to be the first to get a crack at Friday night, but their luck wouldn’t fare much better than the two before them. They got set up and even played for a handful of songs before it started to rain accompanied by lightning! So, needless to say, everyone just vanished. We offered our apologies to the band, even though we can’t control the weather, we felt bad for them, and they were really pretty good, but they will be back. It was funny though, after all of that, they said “screw it” we’re going to just keep playing anyway. It was also the first night for one of our radio stations (Rock-99), to come hang out with us. They were left in the dust as well (well, in the rain) but they at least had the band still there playing for them, kind of like their own private concert!
Saturday, we came back with around 150 bikes, showed our first movie outside, “Wild Hogs,” offered a $5 dinner special, gave away a bunch of freebies from Pepsi, like the Talladega tickets, shirts and hats, and Club Quincy held their first “Fight” of the 2008 season. The Miller girls were also on hand to give away a bunch of goodies. And from Barber’s Motorsports AMA Races, we have had 3-day passes with a Paddock pass to give away for the last three weeks at all of the bike nights that Cycle Connections sponsors, thanks to John Place. Thanks buddy; you made a whole lot of folks very happy!
And our vendors are starting to trickle back in; we had the pleasure of having the Leather Lady (Judy) back amongst us both nights!
Thankfully, we retained the bikers’ favorite bartenders from last year, Steve, “Little Dan,” Pam, and one of my personal favorites, who I owe an apology to because of our last article. You see, I’m not used to having to make retractions, mostly because our editor, Mike, who usually covers our ass, and I don’t screw up that often. I thought I was wrong once, but I was mistaken! And even though I tried to tell Ms. RUTH that I had called her Ruby because she was like a rare gem, like a ruby, she didn’t buy it, and said, “And the white girl can bullshit too.” What can I say---Busted! I am very sorry, Ruth you’re still top “Bitch” in my book! Love ya, girlfriend!
I need to add a shout out to a couple of other hard-working people that take very good care of us all each weekend: Ms Sherri Rose, best damn waitress in the place, and to Vanessa for cooking us up some killer breakfast; $1.99 breakfast from 11:30 p.m. to 1 a.m., best damn price as well! And thanks to you Joe (and of course, Milton McGregor) for giving us the best place possible to have a bike night; actually it’s more like a mini rally each week that is only going to get bigger and better with time.
For those who have not yet discovered Bike Night with “Hawgs & Dawgs,” all I can say is you’re missing one of the best parties, with some of the best people you’ll ever run across. And as if all of that, along with all of the games, isn’t enough of an enticement, we are giving away a trip a month; all you have to do is sign up! Don’t you think you owe it to yourself to come see what all the talk is about at any one, or all of these bike nights? Well come on, we’ll save a cold one for you!
Write-On and Ride-On
Story and photos by Lynn Reynolds and
Leigh Lilly - Birmingham, Alabama