Well, it is definitely riding season in the Southwest. Last weekend, except for a few patches of rain in some places was great riding weather. Mrs. C. and I took off early Saturday morning for a quick ride to Las Vegas to see the Beatles "Love" show performed by Cirque du Soleil and back on Sunday morning. Coming home was the first time in months it was actually pleasant to drop back into the valley at 85 degrees. It was a fantastic 580 mile, 24 hour turnaround ride that I am excited to tell you about next week.
But for now, this is the time of year that there are several rides showing up on the calendar for various different things. One ride in particular coming up this weekend caught my eye and I decided to take a closer look. It is the Phoenix Zoo Ride to benefit the Bornean Orangutans. As you know I love events that have to do with our troops, kids and also animals. I will admit to always being a sucker for a good Chimp or Orangutan show. So when Bill Hewitt at the Phoenix Zoo asked me to come down to visit the Orangutans and see what they were doing with the habitat, I jumped at the chance to get a closer look at these curious creatures. The Zoo currently has 4 of these red headed primates named Duchess, Bess, Michael and the ornery little baby Kasih.
The orangutans are two species of great apes known for their intelligence, long arms and reddish-brown hair. Here is a little fun fact that you might not know. Orangutans arms are twice as long as their legs. They are particularly fun to watch as they are widely recognized as the world's most intelligent animal other than humans, with higher learning and problem solving ability than chimpanzees, which were previously considered to have greater abilities. A study of orangutans by Carel van Schaik, a Dutch primatologist at Duke University, found them capable of tasks well beyond chimpanzees’ abilities — such as using leaves to make rain hats and leakproof roofs over their sleeping nests. He also found that, in some food-rich areas, the creatures had developed a complex culture in which adults would teach youngsters how to make tools and find food.
I met Bill at the Zoo around 9am to get my first look at this family of cerebral primates. They had apparently already had their morning feed and were settling in for the day. But it was interesting to immediately see evidence of what I read above as Duchess had taken a large palm trimming and was using it as a cover to shield her from the sun, bringing it with her wherever she went. The adults were fairly subdued, but little Kasih was more than enough to keep everyone entertained. As you would expect any 2 year old to be early in the morning, this little girl was into everything as was hilarious to watch as she would try to get her mother to play. But when that didn't work, she decided to make some fun on her own with a large feed sack. She was absolutely showing off for us as she would get inside the sack, walk around with it on her body, lay down and peek out each end to make sure we were still watching. That alone was worth the visit. Here is a funny video that I took of Kasih "showing out". Click Here to View.
I'm not sure what it is, but I could sit for hours and watch these guys explore their surroundings. And substandard surroundings is exactly why the zoo is having this fund raiser. In an effort to keep this severely endangered species multiplying, the zoo is in the midst of a $5 million construction of a new Orangutan habitat at the Phoenix Zoo that will be among the best in the United States.
Bornean orangutans have been a cornerstone of the Zoo's animal collection since its opening, when a young female orangutan named Duchess made her debut. Duchess is now a grandmother and matriarch of a unique family that includes her daughter, Bess, baby granddaughter, Kasih and Kasih's father, Michael. Their home at the Zoo was built in the early 1 970's and while it was considered state-of-the-art then, it has now aged and is not capable of supporting our current standards for animal care, welfare and exhibition. A significant investment is required to not only bring this exhibit up to ideal standards, but to create sufficient size and space that would simulate or model natural conditions found in the wild. Additions include a new and larger nighthouse, and two-story climbing exhibit, which will bring the audience up into the tree tops along side the orangutans. Without this renovation, the zoo will be extremely challenged to continue to house orangutans in the future.
Bert Castro, President/CEO of the Phoenix Zoo, who also happens to be an avid motorcycle rider, said, "There are some scientists who believe that the orangutan may be the first species of great ape to go extinct in the wild. That makes our efforts to improve our facility all the more important, not only for the Phoenix Zoo and our orangutan family group, but for the entire species, as our animals are participants in the American Zoo Association's Species Survival Plan. We are currently in motion to build the finest orangutan facility in the United States."
It is a little known fact, at least it was to me, that most of the operating funds to keep our zoo open is raised from private donations by large corporations and individuals. This Sunday, October 12th the Phoenix Zoo is hosting a fundraiser called the "Zoo Ride Poker Run", inviting motorcycle riders to help raise money for the orangutan habitat. So shine up your bike and join in for the 1st ZooRide, presented by the Wildest Club in Town. All proceeds benefit the Bornean Orangutans at the Phoenix Zoo.
The ride begins at 9am Sunday, October 12th at Arrowhead Harley-Davidson in the NW Valley and Chandler HD in the SE Valley. Join in on the fun for $25 per individual or $40 per couple. Includes Poker Run, Admission to the Phoenix Zoo, a special Lunch, Live Music, Raffle and of course, your chance to see the resident Orangutans, Duchess, Bess, Michael and the always entertaining baby Kasih. After party will be at The Billet at 3pm.
While you are there, take a look at some of the other animals around the zoo. I got a picture of this elephant entertaining himself. I call the photo, "It's Five O'Clock Somewhere".
Click Here for Some Great Photos of the Orangutans in their current habitat.
Click Here for the Video of Kasih. It is entertaining.
Bike Nights This Week
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.
Chandler 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 11th
Rock N Ride Poker Run. A full day of fun filled events and "Poker Run" motorcycle ride at Desert Ridge Mall. With Military and Packages From Home representation. There will be a rock climbing wall, food, music, family entertainment and other activities to entertain and inform people about Packages From Home and our Military. All donations and proceeds are in support of Packages From Home. Poker run entry is $20 for each rider and $10 per passenger. Registration at Desert Ridge Marketplace, NE Corner of Loop 101 and Tatum Rd. from 8-10am. First bike out at 9am. Last bike in at 1pm. Live entertainment, prizes and food will be available from 11am - 2pm. Poker run prizes will be given at 2:15pm at Rock Bottom. more information call Jeff at 602-689-0393.
Sunday, October 12th
1st Annual Zoo Ride. Rev up your engines and join us for the 1st ZooRide, presented by the Wildest Club in Town. This inaugural "wild ride" poker run begins Sunday, October 12, 2008, at 9 a.m., and all proceeds benefit the Bornean Orangutans at the Phoenix Zoo. Join in on the fun for only $25 per individual or $40 per couple with pre-registration. Day of ride is $30/$45. Riders with all types of two wheelers are welcome! Pre-registration will begin on the Phoenix Zoo's website, and walk-ins the day of are also welcome! End your ride at the wildest place in town – the Phoenix Zoo, where you can enjoy a special lunch, live entertainment, raffle and much more! Please note: The ZooRide Poker Run does NOT begin at the Zoo. Choose from one of the following start locations: Arrowhead Harley Davidson, 16130 N. Arrowhead Fountain Center Drive, Peoria, 623.247.5542 or Chandler Harley Davidson, 6895 W. Chandler Blvd., Chandler, AZ. 480.496.6800. Click Here to Register Online.
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.
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.
Readers Rides 2008 Photo Gallery: I know
there are several of you that have taken trips this Summer and would like to share your photo. I would like to see pictures with you and/or your bike next to a Sign, a well known part of
Americana or a Famous Landscape of where you have ridden. Be sure and tell where the photo was taken. I will add
them to the Readers Rides 2008 Photo Gallery. Just email me a picture of you or your bike next to a sign or landmark
to share with everyone. Email to email@example.com. Click Here to View photos already sent in.
Women Who Ride Photo Gallery. Ladies! Send in your photos on your bike to be added to the Women Who Ride Gallery. Click Here to View photos already submitted.
In light of the subject matter today. Here
is a Root Beer commercial that is pretty funny. Click Here to View.
Here is a guy who might want to find another sport that he is a little bit more proficient at. Click Here to View.
Remember last week when I talked about safety and being careful who you ride with. I'll bet the guy in front on this video wished he would have thought about that. Click Here to View.
In case you missed it in the editorial above, here is the orangutan video. Click Here to View.