The South’s Premier Motorcycle Convention
Phil and I joined motorcyclists from across the southeast for the Great American Motorcycle Show at the Cobb Galleria Convention Center in North Atlanta January 25-26, for the chance to browse the latest bikes, gear, accessories, and miscellaneous sparkles & farkles for motorcycling. Dealerships, bike shops and vendors from across the country debuted the latest in two & three-wheeled wonders from Harley-Davidson, Indian, Slingshot, the Japanese “Big Four”, as well as Euro brands BMW, Ducati, KTM, MV Augusta, Moto Guzzi, Husqvarna, and one of the oldest moto companies in the world, Royal Enfield– among the largest manufacturers on the planet outside of the U.S, now making inroads here stateside (future story on this coming soon).
Every genre of motorcycling was represented- cruisers, tourers, sport bikes, standards, vintage/classics, motocross, even trials. Also seen- Zero Motorcycles, all-electric bikes, offering a glimpse into one possible future of motorcycling. The show featured numerous leather and riding gear companies, and multiple motorcycle RV and camping resources. A great variety of offerings for those of us who love the “Ride Life”.
This year’s show saw several internationally known custom bike builders in attendance- Paul Yaffe of Bagger Nation, Kory Souza of Kory Souza Originals, Georgia’s own Kevin Baxter of Pro Twin Performance, and Johnny Lange of Strip Club Choppers, to name a few. And one of the greatest custom motorcycle painters in America, JDaar Customs was displaying his latest mind-blowing creations as well. Several well-known builders use JDaar for their custom paint needs. We find it very interesting to follow the American custom trends across the years, and preview via builders and creators like these, what motorcycling’s future might look like.
There were several vintage/classic restoration shops present, specializing in many of the legendary British marquees- Old Triumphs, Nortons, BSAs, and even a rare Rickman. A bike show demonstrated the wide world of motorcycling, from radical performance baggers and choppers, to old chopped/bobbed/ratted oldies. We even beheld a fully restored Spanish Bultaco 370 early motocross, a rare find indeed.
Wonderful rides, rallies, and destinations were present as well, with representatives from Copperhead Lodge, the Cherokee Blue Ridge Run, among others, and riding lawyers like Chuck Watwood (lawbike.com) Steve Murrin (AmericanBikerLawyer.com) helping sponsor the weekend with tote bags, prizes, etc. So many fantastic biker people, across the spectrum of motorcycling. This weekend’s show was the largest attended event in recent years, both in participating vendors and in patrons, according to the GAMS organizers. A good harbinger?
With the departure several years ago of the Progressive International Motorcycle Show from Atlanta (or the entire southeast, for that matter), the Great American Motorcycle Show fills that gap left behind for us here in the Deep South. Men and women, young and old, from across the spectrum of our great land, came together to share and enjoy our common passion- all things 2-wheels (and sometimes 3) and a motor.
*photos and video by Phil