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Easyriders® Bike Show Tour 2004

Written by  May 2, 2004

The Easyriders© Bike Show is without a doubt, the best annual bike show in Kansas City, drawing visitors from all over the country. This year's show was held on Saturday, April 3rd at Bartle Hall in downtown Kansas City, Missouri, and was the 10th stop on the tour.

We had a booth at this year's show, which gave us the opportunity to meet many of our local readers. Cycle Connections cover girls, Angie (February) and Jayme, (April), were on hand to greet visitors and sign autographs. Visitors were invited to test their skills by throwing darts at our electronic dartboard for a chance to win Cycle Connections t-shirts, coozies, and leather gloves, and everyone was encouraged to fill out an entry form for a chance to win an awesome tribal designed leather jacket donated by Valerie Dutro of Kansas City, Missouri was the lucky winner of the leather jacket. Congratulations Valerie!

We were lucky enough to have a booth next to The Broken Spoke Saloon, which gave us the opportunity to meet Jody Wyse, who happened to be working their booth. Jody is in the process of selling his interest in the Broken Spoke Saloons in Daytona, Myrtle Beach, Sturgis, and Laconia to give himself more time to pursue his love of art. Jody has his own art business called Sturgis Artwork, and is such a talented artist that his work will be featured on this year's Sturgis Beer cans. Stripe also secured a camping spot in Jody's back yard in Sturgis, so he can be right in the middle of the action. We plan to feature some of Jody's art in an upcoming issue, so keep your eye out if your are in the market for some great biker art.

As usual, there were wall-to-wall custom bikes, hundreds of vendors with lots of new products, live bands, and the Purrfect Angelz stage show certainly kept the crowds entertained.

In additional to many talented local bike builders, the show promoters also invited master builders, Billy Lane, Paul Yaffee, Eddie Trotta, Kim Suter, Kendall Johnson and Tom Langton to show off some of their latest creations. Their bikers were incredible works of art, plus, if you were willing to stand in line, you could get an autograph and have your photo taken with Billy Lane. Doug Plowman, one of our readers from St. Joseph, Missouri sent me a few photos of Billy posing with him, his wife, Cheri, and their good friend Cecil Searcy. Apparently, Doug, Cheri and Cecil were in the right place at the right time when they caught Billy trying to sneak away to the bathroom or to replenish his signature bottle of whiskey.

This year's show included a Discovery Channel bike build off between master builders, Kendall Johnson and Mitch Bergeron, with Mitch taking home the trophy. The show also included more than 200 custom top-of-the-line bikes that were divided into two classifications, a Judged class and a Spectator class. The Judged class is for the top-end bikes from the best builders in the area, and was judged by the editors of Easyriders, V-Twin, Biker magazine, as well as some of the master bike builders who are part of the Easyriders® tour. The Spectator class is more for the backyard builders, who build their own custom bike and want to compete. When guests entered the show they were handed a ballot, which they used to vote for their favorite bikes, so the winners of the Spectator class was determined by popular vote.

There were 35 trophies awarded at this year's show, and the top three winners in each class advanced to the $25,000 Invitational in Columbus, Ohio where they collected a $1,000 and a chance to compete for top honors.

Click on the following photos for a close-up look at some of this year's bikes and other interesting happenings from the show, and don't forget to check out the list of this year's bike show winners.

By Mike Schweder:
Mike Schweder

Photos by Stripe