The 2013 show season is quickly shifting into gear, and Motorcycle Classics is getting ready early as we add another show to our already packed schedule with the addition of The Meet Vintage Motorcycle Festival at the incredible LeMay museum in Tacoma, Wash., Aug. 24-25, 2013.
This will be the second vintage motorcycle event held at the LeMay, which bills itself as “America’s Car Museum” — think Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum, but with vintage cars (some 350) taking center stage. But the LeMay isn’t just about cars, because while the museum puts the focus on vintage four-wheelers, LeMay actively promotes the classic bike scene, with The Meet touted as one of its signature events.
Last year’s inaugural show, co-produced with Mark and Linda Wilsmore/Ace Café London, drew 200-plus vintage bikes and some 2,000 vintage bike fans under a picture-perfect blue sky to enjoy an outstanding display of vintage Italian, Japanese, British, European and American motorcycles. The quality of machines was fantastic, and the next day some 125 attendees — including Motorcycle Classics editor Richard Backus — saddled up for a ride that took participants to the tiny town of Elbe in the shadow of Mt. Rainier.
This year the spotlight shines on BMW, celebrating that marque’s 90th anniversary, and the event expands with a swap meet and a used bike corral. Motorcycle Classics will set up shop on the museum’s 3.5-acre show field; look for Motorcycle Classics-hosted seminars and keep an eye out for editor Backus, who will help judge the assembled bikes for best in class in 15 categories.
LeMay has designated Riders for Health, an international aid organization that manages more than 1,400 motorcycles and other vehicles to deliver health care to 12 million people across Africa, as an official show charity. “It’s the most benevolent use of motorcycles I have ever heard of anywhere,” says show chairman Burt Richmond. We’d second that. A portion of the proceeds from Sunday’s Coastal Twisties ride will benefit Riders for Health.