Daytona Bike Week – A Brief History
If you are a motorcycle enthusiast in North America, you’ve no doubt heard about one of the biggest biker rallies and parties in the United States and the entire world. Daytona Bike Week is an amazing motorcycle event that brings together approximately a half million like minded bikers each and every year.
What started in 1937 as the Daytona 200, a motorcycle race ran over both sandy beaches and pavement, has turned into an unbelievable 10 day festival held in March of each year. For thousands of North American motorcycle enthusiasts who are bombarded by winter including the cold temperatures and snow that accompanies it, Daytona Bike Week arrives just in time to transition out of hibernation and into biker party mode.
The success of the popular 10 day motorcycle related event can partially be attributed to the beautiful location holding Daytona Bike Week. Volusia County is located on the east coast of Florida and is home to some of the nicest beach vacation destinations in Florida and the United States. During Daytona Bike Week, the population of this ocean side county can swell to twice its size, doubling it’s population for 10 days from 500,000 to 1 million.
As the popularity of the original Daytona 200 race grew, more and more motorcycle enthusiasts began flocking to Daytona Beach to watch and take in the excitement of the rally… and to enjoy the sunshine and beaches of Daytona Beach and Volusia County. Only for a few consecutive years during the second world war in the forties was the Daytona 200 cancelled as all resources and interest were focused on the allied forces defeating Germany in the European conflict.
Fast forwarding to present times, the small Daytona 200 race has evolved into something that can only be described as the biggest biker party/festival on the planet with local and corporate businesses sponsoring and holding so many events during the 10 days that it would be simply impossible to attend them all. From bike shows to beer gardens from poker runs to biker-themed concerts… Daytona Bike Week is to an adult what Disneyworld is to a young girl or boy. Nowhere else will you see this many leather clad, bad ass looking bikers having so much fun, each one seeming to have that wide eyed excitement with a hint of amazement and wonderment. All brought on by the sights, sounds and overall experience of the Daytona Bike Week.
To say that it should be on every bikers’ bucket list is so 2009, but I’m going to say it anyway. This year’s Daytona Bike Week will be held on March 9 – 18. So if you’re into motorcycles, having fun, lots of sunshine and great people to party and share this experience with, I strongly urge you to attend.
Author: Kurt Laschuk