Well, we have finally reached that time of year that we will start using the "L" word when preparing for a ride. That word is "Layer". You know, when you start out with a sweatshirt over a long sleeve shirt and then retire that as it warms up. Nothing like the last 5 months when you start out hot, go to blazing hot and then back to hot again all while wearing the exact minimal amount of clothing. Those of you that were out on your bike early in the morning this week or heading up North this weekend will definitely be practicing the layering method, and we all welcome the opportunity to do that after 5 long months of hot to blazing hot.
As I mentioned a few weeks ago, the riding bug has really bitten me over the last few weeks as evidenced by the 4,000 miles that have been rolled up in the last 7 weeks since my bike got out of the shop with the new motor. A trip to Ouray, Colorado, several trips up North on the weekends and a week ago an overnighter to Las Vegas. When you think about it, where can you get that kind of entertainment for such a cheap price? You could go for a 240 mile leisurely ride that might take you 6 hours in some twisties with some stops. At 40 miles per gallon you would burn approximately 6 gallons at $3 per gallon for a total of $18. Where in the world can you get that kind of entertainment for only $3 an hour?? Certainly not Disneyland. And if you are riding 2 up, it is only $1.50 an hour. Now that is recession type of entertainment.
One thing we have learned over the years is that a riding destination is really a lot about the perception of how far the destination is more so than the actual miles. For example, I mentioned to Mrs. C. that I wanted to go to Las Vegas a week ago Saturday to see the Beatles "Love" Show at the Mirage. It appears that Las Vegas would be too far to ride just to see a show and then come back the next morning. But I looked on the map and found that it was only 280 miles away. No big deal, that could easily be done in a morning ride, but the perception is, it seemed like a long trip. So I sat down at the computer Friday night about 10pm and made the reservations for the show and the hotel. At 6:45am Saturday morning with the sun peeking over the mountains to the East, we were on our way to Las Vegas to see the much anticipated Cirque Du Soleil "Love" performance to classic Beatles music.
Our first leg took us out through Wickenburg and then on Hwy. 93 through the Joshua Forest for 160 miles to almost Kingman for our first gas stop. Unfortunately it was also a time to put on our rain jackets as the next 20+ miles greeted us with a light rain and cold. (See layering comments above). We actually froze for those miles as it is always colder and windy on I-40 from 93 to Kingman. But a few miles North of Kingman we broke back into partly cloudy blue skies and warmth for the next 60 miles to Hoover Dam. It had been several years since we had crossed Hoover Dam so it was exciting to see this engineering marvel once again and get a few photo ops. If you have never been to the Dam, I would highly encourage you to take some time to stop and do the tour and watch the movie of the making of the Dam. It is fascinating and will change the way you think of it as you ride over it the next time.
After a 20 minute stop on the South side of the dam to take in the view, we crossed this historic structure from Arizona to Nevada and made our way up the hill, through Boulder City and Henderson when got our first look at the Las Vegas skyline in the distance. Rolling into town at 11am capping our 280 mile, 4 hour and 15 minute journey to Sin City, we decided to go directly to the Mirage for early check in to freshen up and drop the bag in the room before going to the Cashman Center to see the vendors at the Bike Fest. While looking at the vendor selection was mildly interesting at best, my mind was really on seeing the Beatles Love show that I had been hearing so much about.
We got back to the room at about 4 to rest and get ready for dinner and the show. I wanted to take some great early evening pics of the strip so we got on the bike, hit the strip and started heading toward the MGM to get some pics along the way. But we forgot 2 important things. Number One is that gridlock on the strip in Vegas in the early evening makes I-17 in rush hour look like the Autobahn. It is the worst traffic jam you can imagine. It can literally take you 30 minutes to go 3 miles.
Number Two is that Nevada is a helmet state. We were in the middle of this grid lock and a guy on a bike in the other lane from California said, "Hey, I thought Nevada was a helmet state". Oops! It is. And Mrs. C. and I were sitting in the middle of the strip on my bike with no helmets on and no where to go. Since we were only a couple of blocks from the Mirage, I decided to take the next right and swing back around real quick, no harm no foul. Wrong again! There was no way directly back to the hotel. We ended up having to get onto the freeway and go 3 miles in the opposite direction. So here we are cruising down the freeway with no helmets on before finally getting an exit to take some side streets back. It was a bit stressful to say the least. But after a few zig zags we made it back to our motorcycle corral at the Mirage without incident. Parking the bike for good at that point, we went back into the hotel to eat dinner and kill some time before the 10pm show. Here is the view from our room at night.
It was now finally time for us to take the walk under the neon British flag to the auditorium that was built specifically for this show. Being a Beatles fan from the time that I was 6 years old and watching the Fab 4 live on the Ed Sullivan show, my excitement was sky high in anticipation of whether this show could possibly live up to the hype that it had gotten. The theater is in the round with presumably not a bad seat in the house. There are 6 walkways to center stage, so you are never far from the action of the over 60 performers in the show. George Martin and his son Giles, used all of the available Beatles recordings from the Abbey Road Studios to re-master and re-produce 26 existing Beatles songs in essence bringing them into the 21st century. All of the music that you hear played, sung and spoke was taken from hours of Beatles recording sessions that have been stored away for over 40 years and brought back to life for this show. George and Giles mixed and matched riffs from guitars, drums and voice from different recordings in digital 5.1 surround sound to update the Beatles original songs without losing the classic sound of the group. In a word, the result is FANTASTIC! It is almost like getting a new Beatles CD with fresh material.
Combine this updated Beatles music with the imagination and talent of Cirque Du Soleil and you have what is one of the best shows that I have ever seen. It was 90 minutes of performers being raised out of the floor, flying through the air and multiple prop changes constantly flowing on and off the stage. All of this action is choreographed to 26 enhanced tracks of Beatles music coming at you from over 4000 speakers above behind and below. The audio in this theater is so good, that there was one time in the show that John Lennon was talking and it sounded like he was directly behind me speaking into my ear. Kind of eerie, but definitely added to the experience. Along with impromptu dialog of John, Paul, George and Ringo you will hear classics such as Get Back, Eleanor Rigby, Lady Madonna and Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds. It was hard to choose, but two of my favorite performances were to Octopus's Garden and Something.
The evening closes with a reprise of "Sgt. Pepper" and of course "All You Need is Love". With the multitude of costumes, props and action going on for 90 straight minutes, it is almost impossible to consume it all in one show. Half way through you are already on sensory overload trying to remember what you have just seen. Finally you just set back and let these cosmic mind bending performances by the Cirque Du Soleil cast entertain you while taking a musical walk down memory lane with one classic Beatles song after the other.
It is hard to even come close to describing this show except to say that we are already planning our next trip to see it again. There is no way to consume this show in just one viewing. The best way to get a glimpse of what you will see is to go to the Cirque Du Soleil site for Love and click on "Preview From The Show" in High Res on the front page. This is the best little 2 min clip I have seen. CLICK HERE To View. You can also learn more about the show on this page. The Beatles Page also has a lot of great information on the Love show including clips from the music list and several video clips with interviews of Paul, Ringo and George Martin. You could spend some quality time on this site. CLICK HERE To View. For an excellent review from Variety, CLICK HERE. I give "Love" a 10 out 10 rating. I really don't know how it could have been much better. The show is pretty pricey but more than worth it. There are 3 prices of tickets ranging from $99, $125 and $150 with shows at 7 and 10pm. We got the $125 seats in the last row of section 201 which were perfect. This is the perfect level to see all the action above and below. This is the stage from our seats. Maybe a good birthday or Christmas present. Link to Tickets.
Overall, this was one of the most fun impromptu short rides we have taken. If you are looking to be spontaneous and take off for a ride this weekend or any other weekend, you can easily do it 2 days. It is a great ride of only 280 miles from the NW Valley and of course a great time while you are there with multitudes of activities to partake in. With the high level of exceptional visual and a totally satisfying audio stimulation, I rate the Beatles "Love" show as one of the best live performances of any type that I have ever seen. If you make a weekend of it, the Danny Gans show is great and Jay Leno is there most weekends. Let me know how you like it. Click Here for Google Map of the Ride.
Click Here for over 100 Photos from the ride.
Click Here for Cirque Du Soleil Love Page.
Click Here for Beatles Love Page.
Click Here for Variety review of the show.
Click Here for Tickets.
Click Here for the Mirage.
Southwest Diner: Good Breakfast stop in Boulder City, NV.
Saturday, October 18th
RoctoberFast 2 at Arrowhead Harley-Davidson.
Don't miss this annual ONE DAY ONLY Blow Out Party from 10am - 6pm at
Arrowhead Harley-Davidson featuring 2 Live Bands.
Wednesday, October 22nd
Chester's Harley-Davidson Garage Party 3. Ladies! Ever wanted to ride your own bike?
Well now is your chance to familiarize and experience for yourself, what the Harley-Davidson lifestyle is really all about.
Vito & Nick's II Thursday Bike Night. Starting Again in the SOUTHEAST VALLEY. After a long hot summer, Vito & Nick's II is putting their great outdoor patio to good use on Thursday nights with an all new bike night. This is a brand new location that features an outdoor patio, a comfortable dining area and bar. Bike night specials include $1.00 Off All Beer, $2.00 Off All Appetizers, $2.00 Off All Shots, $2.00 Off All Large Pizzas, Raffle Prizes. Get your raffle ticket when you ride in. Plenty of outside seating and dining inside. Stop by this Thursday for some Great Food and Fun! Vito & Nick's is located at 3321 E. Queen Creek Rd. (SE Corner of Queen Creek and Higley Rd.) 480-279-4482. Click Here to see Vito & Nicks.
Harley-Davidson Bike Night at Tilted Kilt Mesa. Stop by the brand new Tilted
Kilt in Mesa for Thursday Bike Night sponsored by Chandler Harley-Davidson. Sit
out on the spacious patio or the cool inside. No matter where you are there will be the Tilted Kilt girls there
to wait on you. Enjoy great food and drink, Door Prize Drawings, Music and 15% off your entire ticket on Bike Night.
The NEW Tilted Kilt is located at 1910 S. Gilbert Rd. in Mesa. 480-507-5458.
Chester's Harley-Davidson Bike Night at Dos Gringos Mesa. Ride by the New Dos Gringos Mesa located on the northwest corner of Greenfield and Baseline in Mesa. Dos is sure to make an impact and add some flare to the east valley. Enormous patio, complete with its own outdoor bar and separate dining areas on each side. Dos is a casual neighborhood hangout with great food and cold cervezas. Feel free to dine at one of our four tops, relax at one of the booths lining the edge or just belly up to the bar. Click Here to View. There will be drink and food specials and Raffles and Fun from Chester's Harley-Davidson. Ride with Chester's from the dealership at 5:30pm every Thursday located at 922 S. Country Club Dr. in Mesa. 480-894-0404.
Hooter's Thursday Bike Night at Peoria location. The parking lot will be blocked off and it will be a night for MOTORCYCLES. Ride by Hooters in Peoria every Thursday night for Prizes, Giveaways every 1/2 Hour, Specials and of course great service by the Hooter's Girls. Enjoy $2.00 Bud and Bud Light Pints and $5.00 Bombers as well as those tasty Hooter's Wings. Sit on the huge outdoor patio and watch your favorite sporting event or inside with TV's every where you look. Enjoy this perfect riding weather with a ride to Hooter's this Thursday. Plan to check out the first night. 16550 N. 83rd Ave. just South of Bell Rd. 623-776-0123.
The Bike Night At The Billet Bar. Voted "BEST BIKER BAR IN PHOENIX" by New Times. There is no better place to watch all the Bikes ride down Scottsdale road than from The Billet Bar Patio. The Billet is ALWAYS packed with bikes Every Day. Stop by and take a look at the New Flamed Booths on the Paradise Patio. The new bars front and rear provide spacious seating, fresh air atmosphere, perfect temperature and courteous staff. The food is amazing and always the latest in cold libations await. You can sit at the back bar and watch your favorite TV on any of the seven big inch televisions. Play pool, listen to the latest music and socialize. The front patio seats over 75 people and is perfect for people watching on Scottsdale Rd. The Billet Bar is located on 3752 N. Scottsdale Rd. Check it out this Thursday night and all weekend long. Info: at 480-941-1876. Click Here for the New Billet Bar Page with pictures.
Saturday, October 18th
RoctoberFast 2 at Arrowhead Harley-Davidson. Don't miss this annual ONE DAY ONLY Blow Out Party from 10am - 6pm at Arrowhead Harley-Davidson featuring 2 Live Bands. Prankster will be entertaining from 11am - 1pm and Presence from 2pm - 4pm. Enjoy FREE Brauts & Hot Dogs courtesy of the HOG Chapter 83 from 11am - 3pm. FREE 4th Gear Dyno Pulls available from 9am - 5pm. Ridenow Girls and NOS Girls from 11am - 3pm. ONE DAY ONLY SPECIALS: Genuine Harley-Davidson Motor Parts & Accessories and Service Specials! Don't miss one of the biggest parties of the year at Arrowhead Harley-Davidson located 16130 N. Arrowhead Fountain Center Dr., Peoria. 623-247-5542.
Saturday, October 18th
Charity Ride N Drive for Domestic Abuse Shelters. This event is for bikes, cars, trucks or whatever will get you there. All proceeds will be donated to local domestic abuse shelters. Ride starts at Chester's Harley-Davidson, 922 S. Country Club in Mesa. Registration from 8:30am - 10am. Ride ends at Roadrunner Saloon in New River. 50/50 and door prizes. Entry is $20 per bike and $20 per vehicle. For information contact Joan at 480-818-0831.
Sunday, October 19th
8th Annual Foothills Stampede Road Rally and Share-The-Wealth Raffle. Join the Foothills H.O.G. Chapter 76 for a day of riding, food and festivities. This ride is to raise money for the Chandler Compadres (www.chandlercompadres.org) to benefit youth academic and development programs. 1st Road Rally Map issued 8:30am - 10am. $25 Registration per Person/$45 per Couple includes: 150-Mile Ride through Scenic Arizona. Ride Patch (for first 500 registrants). Pancake Breakfast at CHD for registered participants while supplies last, Entrance to Ft. McDowell Casino and Lunch. Music provided at Ft. McDowell, both outside and inside the casino. Share-the-Wealth Raffle, Fabulous Door Prizes, Vendors/Shopping. 15% Discount on Parts and Motorclothes At Chandler Harley Davidson till 10:00 am. Chandler Harley-Davidson is located at 6895 W. Chandler Blvd., in Chandler. 480-496-6800.
Sunday, October 19th
Grub Run One. Run presented by United Christian Riders to raise money for St. Stephen's Food Bank. Registration from 7:30am - 9am at St. Stephen's Episcopal Church located at 2310 N. 56th St. in Phoenix. Ride is to Salty Senorita located at 8011 W. Paradise Lane in Peoria. Prize drawing at 9am. $10 per person with all proceeds to St. Stephen's Food Bank. For more information call 623-210-1504.
Wednesday, October 22nd
Chester's Harley-Davidson Garage Party 3. Ladies! Ever wanted to ride your own bike? Well now is your chance to familiarize and experience for yourself, what the Harley-Davidson lifestyle is really all about. This event is meant to engage women into taking the first step to freedom on the road. This is a way to address some of the barriers women face from deciding to ride, to learning how to ride, to planning and experiencing the ride. Features include: *Learning to Ride with Rider's Edge, *Gearing Up To Ride, *Motorcycle Safety, *Fitting Your Motorcycle, *Facility Tour, *Photo Op on a Harley, Wine, Cheese and Raffles. Event time from 6pm - 8pm. Call 480-894-0404 and register today!! Chester's Harley-Davidson is located at 922 S. Country Club Dr. in Mesa.
Saturday, October 25th
Renegade Classics Fall Open House Party and Sale. If you haven't been to the new Renegade Classics store yet, now is the time to go. I am really impressed with the comfortable feel and quality product in this store. Renegade is a great store full of all of the Gear and Accessories that you will need for the upcoming Riding Season. Renegade is full of new fall merchandise. You can take advantage of this sale that includes a top selection of:
Leather Jackets, Chaps and Vests all at 10% OFF.
Huge selection of Harley-Davidson Boots all at 15% OFF.
A whole wall full of Helmets at 20% Off.
Fantastic selection of Gloves, Doo Rags and Headwear at 25% Off.
30% OFF Renegade Full Color Shirts.
Need patches?? A large selection of patches are in stock and can be sewn on your jacket or vest for FREE from 9am - 11am Saturday. There will be FOOD, Girls, and LIVE Music and a Bikini Bike Wash from 11am - 2pm. This is the perfect time to stop by and see the Renegade Classics store that everyone is talking about and Gear Up For Fall. Renegade Classics is located at 3102 E. Cactus Rd. in Phoenix. Call now to see if they have what you are looking for. If not, they will get it. 602-595-9597. CLICK HERE for pictures of the store and merchandise inside the store. Check out the new Riggs Touring Bag that I just bought at Renegade.
Saturday, October 25th
Arrowhead Harley-Davidson Free Appreciation Breakfast. Taking a ride Saturday morning? Stop by Arrowhead HD for a free breakfast on your way out of town. Arrowhead Harley-Davidson wants to invite EVERYONE to a customer appreciation breakfast on the last Saturday of every month from 8:30am till 10:00 am. Join us for a FREE pancake, sausage and egg breakfast. Thank you for all your support and business! Ride by Arrowhead Harley-Davidson the last Saturday of Every Month for a free breakfast. Arrowhead Harley-Davidson is located at 16130 N. Arrowhead Fountain Center Dr. in Peoria. 623-247-5542.
Saturday, October 25th
Hacienda Harley-Davidson Afternoon Free Ice Cream Sundaes. Need something to satisfy your sweet tooth in the middle of the afternoon?? Ride by Hacienda Harley-Davidson the last Saturday of every month to celebrate 30 Years with 30 toppings for your FREE Ice Cream Sundae. Ride by Hacienda Harley from 2pm - 4pm this Saturday and make your own Sundae from 30 toppings. While you are there, take a look at the new 2009 Harley-Davidson's and the latest in Motorclothes. Put this on your calendar for the last Saturday of every month. Hacienda is located at 15600 N. Hayden Rd. in Scottsdale. 480-905-1903.
Saturday, October 25th
2nd Annual Officer Holly Memorial Ride. 150 Mile ride to benefit the Anthony Holly Foundation. Anthony Holly was a Glendale police officer killed in the line of duty February 2007. The ride starts in Sun City at Care From the Heart, 10032 W. Bell Rd., goes to the Rancher Bar in Wickenburg, then to the The Tin Top in Tonopah, on to the Moose Lodge in Avondale, Iron Horse V-Twin in Peoria and ends at Pullano's Pizza and Wings in 13848 N. 51st Avenue, Glendale. Price is $25 for single rider and $40 for double. Price includes t-shirt, ride patch, and lunch for the first 400 paid riders. There will be a entertainment at the final stop, a 50-50 raffle and a poker draw at each stop with the winning hand winning a TV. www.anthonyhollyfoundation.org
Saturday, October 25th
Hideaway 10 Yr. Anniversary Concert featuring the Phunk Junkeez. $10 admission at the door. Concert is from 5pm - 9pm to be held at Buddy Stubbs Harley-Davidson. Food and Drink will be available at the concert. While you are there, take a look at the new 2009 Harley-Davidson's and the Fall Motorclothes. Buddy Stubbs Harley-Davidson is located at located at 13850 N. Cave Creek Rd. in Phoenix.
Saturday, October 25th
2008 Ridin' For A Reason. Sponsored by Superstition Harley Davidson and Superstition HOG Chapter to benefit the Child Crisis Center. Registration 10 AM - Noon. Starts at Superstition Harley-Davidson, 2910 W. Apache Trail, Apache Junction, AZ. Final Destination at Child Crisis Center 817 N. Country Club, Mesa. $30 rider with passenger-includes run shirt(s) for the first 400 registered. 5 stop Carnival game ride with grand prize of $500 SHD gift card Games (adults and kids), Live Band, Raffle All Proceeds to Benefit the Child Crisis Center, a 501(C)(3) organization.
Sunday, October 26th
Arizona Rip's B.A.D. Ride IV. American Diabetes Association presents "Arizona Ripís B.A.D. Ride IV, Bikers Against Diabetes. Start sites throughout Arizona (Click Here for Start Locations) with registration at 8:00am and escorted rides going to the festival site: Pinal County Fairgrounds (512 E. Eleven Mile Corner Road) in Casa Grande. Activities include: Bike Show, Bike Games, Vendors, Live Concert by Canned Heat. ALL participants also receive: complimentary BBQ Lunch and water/sodas, ride pin. Minimum donation to participate: $30 pre-registration for rider/$20 for passenger after Wednesday, October 22nd: $35 rider/$20 passenger. Raise more and receive "Thank You gifts" (BAD Ride T shirt, hat, jacket, etc.). For more information: 888-342-2383 x7112. ALL Bikes are welcome! Ripís B.A.D. Ride is an important fundraising event of the American Diabetes Association. The B.A.D. Ride is personally supported by legends, Willie G. and Bill Davidson, of Harley-Davidson®, based on their personal commitment to the fight against diabetes.
Rider and driver beware! Our Governor is trying to balance the State budget with
your driving indiscretions. At least 9 new Photo Radar locations have
popped up around the valley that will be operational in the next couple of weeks. The sites are as follows:
Eastbound I-10 @ 287th Ave, Eastbound I-10 @ Miller, Eastbound I-10 @ Watson
Southbound SR-101 @ McDowell Rd., Southbound SR-101 @ Indian School, Southbound SR-101 @ Bethany Home
Eastbound SR-101 @ 75th Ave, Eastbound SR-101 @ 59th Ave, Eastbound SR-101 @ 35th Ave
Cyclerides.com Classifieds are now FREE! List your Motorcycles, ATV's, Parts, etc. Just put 1234 in the credit card blanks and add your Bikes or Parts today. Click Here to add or view the current list of items for sale.
Here is another clip from America's Got Talent. Those
kids in the Olympics have nothing on this girl. She is fantastic. Click Here to View.
Commercial's from across the pond are always pushing the envelope. Here is a creative one from Nando Chips. Click Here to View.
The Fruitcake Lady always has some entertaining comments from questions asked of her. Here are some new questions as well as some old that she tackles with her own non politically correct wit. Click Here to View.