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Archive for the 'Sanford' Category

Patriot Guard Riders a security risk?

Posted in Editorial, Florida, Internet Video, Journalism, Military, Motorcycle Events, Motorcycle News, Motorcycles, National, Opinion, Politics, Rants and Raves, Sanford, Titusville on August 28th, 2010

I try to stay away from political commentary on this blog, but I am making this post for a few reasons.

  1. I recently read a news article that is still eating at me (to be discussed below)
  2. I have not made a post in a long time. I have been busy.
  3. There are a lot of things going on in this country that can’t continually be overlooked.
  4. This post is about dignity, dying , veterans and a motorcycle organization of honor.

Recently I stumbled across an post entitled Obama Tells Patriot Guard Get Lost. Yes, it is kind of an old article, April of this year, but not old enough to raise a valid concern over it. First off, the title of the post is a little misleading as no one apparently no for sure who called off the Patriot Guard Riders from being allowed. One thing was for sure the families of the 29 miners killed in a West Virginia mine accident asked for and welcomed the riders. Evidently so did the Governor of the state. So to set the scene a little better, on April 5, 2010 there was a huge coal mine disaster that took the lives of 29 miners. A memorial was planed for late April and the families of the miners asked the Patriot Guard Riders to attend and escort with honor their loved ones. Somewhere along the line a message was sent that the Patriot Guard were to “stand down” for this mission as Obama and Bidden were to attend. Again, no one has come forward with who actually issued the order, but I am sure it was relayed through the secret service.

Whoever made the decision is under a huge misconception on what this group of people stand for and exactly what it is that they do. They certainly would not have posed any type of a security risk for Obama, if anything security would have been tighter. They are a nationwide organization many of which are law enforcement officers and veterans. What possible threat could they have posed. Did they see them as a motorcycle gang, just because they ride motorcycles? Was there some sort of paranoia fear that some rival gang might ride in and have a big shootout? By far, the Patriot Riders are not a gang, they are motorcycle riders period. It is the mode of transportation that they choose and I speak from experience when I say that they add a great deal of honor and dignity to a funeral procession and memorial. My brother died on the streets a homeless vet in July of 2005. I asked the Sanford Chapter of Rolling Thunder if they would give my brother Lonny one last ride before I scattered his ashes in the water at the Veterans Memorial Park in Titusville. My brother loved and respected the grounds of this park and spent a lot of time there. On the day of his last ride along with Rolling Thunder there were also members of the Patriot Guard riders. I have the deepest respect for what they did that day and how they honored my Brother. I have some pictures of that day that I would like to share with you, this is what the Patriot Guard is

These people took the time out of their life to honor my brother and asked for nothing in return

over 30 motorcycles lined up for the memorial service

A short service was given before I set my brother free

 This is what the Patriot Guard Riders mean for me. They brought honor and dignity to the last ride and memorial service for my brother Lonny Odom. For the families of the 29 miners to be denied the same honor and respect was wrong. Whoever made the decision not to allow these people their rights were very wrong. My heart goes out to the 29 men who lost their lives and the loved ones they left behind. Now I share with you a documentary on the Patriot Guard Riders, who they are and what they stand for. How could these men and women have been considered a threat?

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So now those who did not know may be a little wiser as to not only the Patriot Guard Riders and groups like Rolling Thunder, but the entire biker community in general. Respect is always given were respect is due. One more video of a funeral escorted by the Patriot Guard below. This video brings chills to me, just to see the endless line of motorcycles following in honor of a fallen military hero that has paid the ultimate sacrifice. 

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Thanks again to those who came out to honor my brother, this post has been a long time coming. You don’t have to support the war folks, but always support our troops!

Dedicated to my dearly loved brother Marvin Lonny Odom

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Catch The Mob in Sanford at Wolfy’s

Posted in Boating, Dinning, Entertainment, Florida, Internet, Links, Local, Music, News, Sanford on January 31st, 2008

The Mob Band

Here is a tip for my local readers. Head on over to Wolfy’s river deck bar and grill in Sanford, Florida on Saturday February 2nd and hear The Mob. The Mob Band does classic rock and blues, you can hear a little taste of what this band sounds like at The Mob Band web site.

The Mob


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Sanford Bikefest over on to Daytona for Biketoberfest

Posted in Bikefest, Biketoberfest, Daytona Beach, Entertainment, Florida, Local, Motorcycle Events, Motorcycles, News, Rides, Sanford, State, Volusia County on October 15th, 2007

Welcome to Sanford, Florida

We hit Sanford early morning for bikefest, not sure why we left so early, but we did. We hit the local McDonalds for breakfast and I am really not sure why we did, but we did. After killing time in town with breakfast and stopping to get some super 8 tape, we rolled back into the event area close to 9:00 am.

ride quiet signs now in Sanford

With fall here, which we do not experience in Florida, the days are getting shorter so the early morning lighting sucks for taking pictures. The back neighborhood streets are beginning to remind me of Daytona Beach with the ride quiet signs as WESH channel 2 news reports complaints about the noise.

Sanford Bikefest tattoo vendor

Local news reports an expected growth for the Sanford motorcycle event, but if there was it seemed minimal to me. There did seem to be a larger amount of biker event vendors. There were more tattoo vendors then the previous year and more parts and accessory vendors made the walk down East Seminole a little more interesting.

Custom Airbrush by Redz

One truly notable vendor we came across was Redz Custom Airbrush where their motto is “boring paint should be a crime”. The custom airbrush paint work on this bike was anything but boring. The amount of work spent on the detail of this paint shows right down to the rivets.

Cam-Am Spyder

The Can-Am Spyder demo rides were a big hit. You could see trails of these things buzzing around the area all day.

Rear view of the Spyder 3 wheel roadster

A pretty unique 3 wheel vehicle called the Spyder Roadster powered by the Rotax V990 engine. I listened as most of the comments of the demo riders were positive.

Sanford Bikefest stunt rider show

This year the Bikefest visitor’s were treated to two stunt rider shows. About every hour and a half there was a street bike stunt show followed up by motocross jumpers.

stunt rider on one wheel

These riders were good, performing 3 at a time doing wheelies, stoppies and burnouts. They had a pretty awesome finish to the show were all 3 bikes would slide in together and the rider would dismount. The kind of stuff you do not do on the open roads.

Bike show motorcycle

They moved the bike show out to the main event area this year which was kind of nice, but from a photographer’s view the grass could have been cut deeper before opening day.

Purple custom motorcycle by JZ Riders

I needed to find a nice looking purple motorcycle to submit to the Flickr Lupus Awareness group purple photos and I found this sharp looking custom built by JZ Riders of Sanford. I looked through most of the pictures that had been submitted to help create Lupus awareness and I had not seen any motorcycles, so I think I was able to send in something unique with this motorcycle picture.

Pie Eating contest

I guess these pie eating contests are going to come back into style at motorcycle events. I shot the contest this year at Leesburg and Sanford now too. If Daytona decides to have an eating contest, I am hoping they will do Krystal hamburgers. I can eat a sack load of those little guys.

Daytona Biketoberfest is coming up this weekend!

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Sanford Bikefest this weekend

Posted in Bikefest, Camping, Entertainment, Florida, Local, Motorcycle Events, Motorcycles, Music, News, Sanford, State, Travel, Volusia County on October 12th, 2007

riding into Sanford Florida bikefest

Well its time for the end of the year wrap of of motorcycle events in Florida. With Biketoberfest only a week away, many locals will be heading out to Sanford Bikefest for a warm-up weekend.

Hooter girls are always a welcome site at any biker event

Looking back on last year this time, I posted about the upcoming Bikefest, but I failed to post a followup on what happened at the weekend 2006 Florida motorcycle event.

Sanford Tent Camping 

Last year we stayed for all 3 days of the event and as we do for all motorcycle events we took along the tent to enjoy some camping. There is not a whole lot of camping areas around the Sanford area, which is surprising being there are many miles of undeveloped true Florida land.

Lake Mills Park suggested for Bikefest tent camping

A little search on Google netted us one of the nicest camping areas around. Lake Mills Park is a great place to pitch a tent and spend the weekend and is fairly close to Fort Mellon Park in Sanford where Bikefest is held.

Sanford Bikefest sites

This year we will only be visiting Sanford Bikefest on Saturday. The event is rather small and most of what there is to do and see can be done in one day.

Motorcycle for two?

We caught up with a few unusual motorcycles and modes of transportation last year. Notice anything unusual about this bike? Yep, you got it. This motorcycle has not one, but two kickstands!

self propelled surfboard

This guy was demonstrating how to get to Sanford by water riding on a self propelled surfboard.

Dog riding in motorcycle side car

East Seminole Blvd. runs adjacent to Lake Monroe and is closed to motorcycle traffic only during Bikefest. You can catch some good motorcycle pictures along this road and a few more at the bike show early morning.

Sanford Motorcycle cops on parade all riding Saxon motorcycles

The Sanford Police motorcycle division had a little fun when JZ Riders Customs let them all take a spin around the block on the new line of Saxon motorcycles they had on display in the main Bikefest area.

Shannon Burke on the Real Bike during Sanford Bikefest 2006

Orlando radio station personality Shannon Burke rides the 104.1 “Real Bike” along with the parade of custom motorcycles.

Deep South on stage during Sanford Bikefest

One good thing about a smaller venue like the Sanford Bikefest is when its concert time, you can get right up close to the bands. Last year it was a treat to kick back and listen to Deep South. Check out the members of this band :

Artimus Pyle (formerly of Lynyrd Skynyrd), Robert Nix (formerly of Atlanta Rhythm Section), Jimmy Hall (formerly of Wet Willie), Hal McCormack, Dean Daughtry (formerly of Atlanta Rhythm Section), Chris Hicks (formerly of Marshall Tucker Band)

Hal McCormack at Sanford Bikefest

While Deep South was on stage, I got the special treat of chatting with Gene Odom who was Ronnie Van Zant’s personal bodyguard, security for the Lynyrd Skynyrd band. Gene was on hand promoting his books and selling autographed copies.

Sanford Bikefest is small, but big enough to enjoy a day or two checking out some of the local custom motorcycle builder’s new creations, meet up with friends and enjoy the free concerts.

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Bike Night Review – Bar Out Back Sanford, Florida

Posted in Bike Night, Entertainment, Florida, Local, Motorcycle Pictures, Motorcycles, News, Opinion, Sanford on February 19th, 2007

This post will be first in a series, as I begin to bring you reviews of my Bike Night visits.

Sanford Bike Night @ Jonny Rotton’s Bar Out Back

Back about a month ago we took a ride out to Sanford, Florida to check out Jonny Rotton’s Bar Out Back for bike night. Thursday nights in Sanford the normally dark and quiet road that winds along Lake Monroe is lit up as groups of motorcycles roll in for bike night. Located a couple of miles off of I-4 and just behind the St. John’s Bar and Grille lies Jonny Rotton’s Bar Out Back where every Thursday between 7 and 10 they have a party under the stars.

Bar Out Back crowded with bikers for bike night in Sanford

We arrived about 7:30 and even though the temperature was a bit low that night, along with dense patches of fog, the place still draws a large crowd. The Bar Out Back is a perfect place to have a bike night with a large area for motorcycle parking, covered tables, several bars and beer tubs and a burnout pit.

Shannon Burke host at Sanford Bike Night

Real Radio 104.1 talk show host Shannon Burke rides his chopper that was recently built by Pit Bull Motorcycles and joins the crowd.

Bar Out Back Burnout Pit

The motorcycle burnout pits were open and smokin for the weekly contest as the crowds cheered in pleasure to watch as bikers burn their rear tire to the rim.

Ground Zero Harley Drag Racing Team Motorcycle

The all Harley drag racing team of Ground Zro had their Harley drag bike on display and are usually on hand during the Thursday night biker event to answer questions.

I found the bike night at Jonny Rotton’s to be a lot of fun with plenty of outdoor space to roam and meet new friends. There are only a few vendors that were set up, so you do not feel like you are at a shopping mall. The combination of the St John’s Bar and Grille with the Bar Out Back works out real well and the drink prices are very reasonable. This is a bike night that I will return to and recommend it to those who are in the Sanford Orlando area.

Remember to drink responsibly, please.

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Sanford Bikefest

Posted in Bikefest, Entertainment, Florida, Motorcycle Events, Motorcycles, News, Sanford, Upcoming events on October 10th, 2006

When I walked outside this morning, I felt something different. There was a slight feel of coolness in the air. This is not rare weather for most places in the United States this time of year, but for Florida, well its uncommon. Especially when the expected high for the day was in the 80s.  It is a little frightening to feel the chill of a low 60 degree morning in Florida. Here we do not have a true four season year. We just have hot and warm with a few days that may total 3 weeks of cold dropping to the 40s at night.

With Biketoberfest only 10 days away, I don’t want to see the weather start chilling off too much. Biketoberfest is one of the last big bike events of the year. Most certainly, it is for Florida. Looking forward to this event, I found that there is great way to get warmed up and ready to go.

Digging for some of the events planned in Daytona Beach for the Biketober weekend, I came across Sanford Bike Fest that is held this coming weekend in Sanford, Florida.

Looking over the events posted for the weekend in Sanford, I found they have quite a lineup of entertainment. With most the bands that are scheduled to play leaning more towards southern rock to scattered with a few country solo artist on two separate stages, the music should be pretty steady.

The opening act, however, is neither southern nor country and by the looks of the bands bio and play list, I look forward to seeing Dreams the Band a tribute to the living legend Stevie Nicks. This band performs songs like Gypsy and duets like one Stevie did with Tom Petty called “stop draggin my heart around”, this should be a good show. Their web site does not have any demo music, but the band looks as they have keyed in the feeling for a good tribute band.

Later in the day and all throughout the weekend, Team-X-Treem will be performing their street bike stunt show. I had the pleasure of experiencing and photographing this stunt show during this year’s Leesburg Bikefest. I can tell you, if you have not seen these guys, you are in for a treat. Wheelies, stopies, burnouts and stunts that will keep your eyes glued to the three riders. Adam Chumita, Chris Nichols and Todd Colbert put on a show to see. The photo gallery of the pictures that I took during Leesburg are at American Biker Lifestyle.

Of course, what Bikefest could be complete without a custom bike show? Touted as the “Bikes In the Wind Show” the custom bike show starts off at noon with 8 divisions to be judged. The Florida sun will be reflecting off of all the chrome and custom paint. I will be there with camera in hand. This will be a training shoot for my wife Cindi to use the new camera that I bought for here, so look forward to me posting some of the shots she takes during the show.

Saturday, October 14 promises to be exciting day with more live music all day and a remote broadcast from Orlando radio station 104.1 Real Radio. Added to all the vendors, bike show and music, there is going to be a live karate demonstration by High Stepper’s Karate Studio. The precision drill team will crank up their engines at 1:30 displaying timed drill motorcycle riding in the streets of downtown Sanford.

If you like Skynard, you are going to like Deep South. This band hits the main stage at 9:30 p.m. Friday night. I have not yet heard the band perform, but if you visit their web site, they have a few demo songs for you to hear. I look forward to hearing this band play “Sweet Home Alabama”.

This is only the second year for this bike fest and I did not attend the first one. It looks like it should be a good time for anyone that lives in the area, or feels like take a ride. I will report on how the 2nd annual Sanford Bike Fest turned out next week.

Watch for the article!

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