Rides, Rallies and Events Recap

8th Annual Gailapalooza - Grandview, Missouri

Written by  May 1, 2014

The party that annually marks the beginning of the prime riding season in the Midwest is Gailapalooza. The 2014 event was the 8th hosted by Gail’s Harley-Davidson in Grandview, Missouri and took place on Saturday, April 12.

The first activity on the day’s busy schedule was an all-adult Easter egg hunt sponsored by 101 The Fox. Many of the participants qualified by calling in during radio broadcasts. Others were drawn from entries submitted at Gail’s. Hundreds of brightly colored plastic eggs were scattered (not hidden) on the lawn next to the parking lot. Each one contained a slip of paper identifying which of the many nice prizes had been won by the finder. When the signal to start was given, a mad scramble ensued with each hunter trying to gather as many eggs as possible. Next came opening the eggs and standing in line to claim prizes.


Vendor booths filled the parking lot in front of the dealership. A wide variety of products and services were available including jewelry, hearing protection devices for motorcyclists, personal protection products, home remodeling, just to name a few. Charity volunteers promoted upcoming rides such as the Bikers with a Mission Ride for the homeless, the Bikers for Babies® RIDE, and Bug Ride for Jadon’s Hope. Food vendors offered a widely varied selection from burgers to Cajun to barbeque. Musical entertainment was provided by Teacher’z Pet and Troubadour Retrievers. A masseuse was on hand to provide relaxing chair massages in exchange for donations to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital.

A fire-breathing demonstration by Ali Allen began at 1:00 p.m. The weather was very nice all day with the exception of a strong, gusty south wind that made Ali’s demonstration a difficult and risky challenge. After making sure the audience was a safe distance away, she began by twirling a burning staff and flaming whips. Her fire-breathing demonstration was impressive, featuring several gigantic plumes of flame generated by breathing fuel over a torch. At one point a gust of wind resulted in the flame reversing direction and flashing back at Ali’s face. It happened in an instant, and Ali was fortunate to avoid injury. Wisely, the demonstration was cut short at that point in the interest of safety.

Another new attraction at the 2014 Gailapalooza was a pin-up girl contest sponsored by Monkey Wrench Clothing . The eleven contestants were judged based on the authenticity of clothing, hair, and makeup; stage presence; and answers to questions asked by the M.C. During the first round of competition at noon, the ladies wore casual pin-up style attire, and for the second round their clothing was more formal. When not on stage, the pin-up girls enjoyed posing for photos with attendees and/or their motorcycles. Several did not shy away from posing with a ball python that its owner had brought to the event. Judges for the contest were Lea Sixx, Dawn Torres, and Rachelle Split-Lip. Congrats go to the winner, Casey Belano. Monkey Wrench Clothing has been in business since 2007 and specializes in fashions for customers who are involved in the steampunk movement and/or the pin-up look. According to store owner and seamstress par excellence Celene Collins, this was only the second competition sponsored by Monkey Wrench Clothing. She said, “We plan on making this a regular event at car and bike shows as it not only offers marketing opportunities for Monkey Wrench, but also allows local pin-up models the chance to spread the word about their world!” It was definitely an interesting and enjoyable change of pace.

Between the two rounds of pin-up competition, there was a tattoo contest with some great ink on display. The winner, determined by audience applause, was Toni Opella. Her prize was a $100 Gail’s Harley-Davidson gift card.

As always, Gailapalooza was a fun event and a great cure for cabin fever experienced by Kansas City riders during the winter months. Thanks go to Gail and her staff for hosting another great event!


Photojournalist/Account Representative - Kansas City, MO

Dave Baxter, a.k.a. Stripe joined our staff in December, 2003, as a photojournalist. If that road name sounds familiar, you may have seen his photos on the pages of such publications as American Iron, V Twin, VQ, In the Wind, and Easyriders. Stripe attends as many rallies, bike shows, and charity runs as he can and is a major contributor of photos and articles to our magazine. His first assignment was our January, 2004, cover photo, where he snapped the awesome photo of a 1958 Harley-Davidson Duo Glide. A rider since the age of 14, he loves to help and encourage new riders. Stripe enjoys meeting new people and looks forward to catching many of our readers in the viewfinder of his digital camera. Contact Stripe at stripe@cycleconnections.com