This was one of those awesome June Saturdays when the sky is blue with just enough clouds to moderate the heat of the sun. It was actually not hot, just the kind of warm breezy weather that would be the perfect climate all year long. Simply a gorgeous day to be alive and in the outdoors, which made it perfect for an event that blends a classic car and motorcycle ride-in show with a food festival, and they had beer too. You know of course to never drink and drive. But if you are going to walk around all day enjoying some good food, music and kicking tires, a cold brew is nice. Especially if you get to sample a hot Biker Billy recipe, or hotter yet, get to be on stage with yours truly, Biker Billy.
This event has the potential to do some serious growing if the good folks at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs decide to make it a yearly affair. I could even see a weekend mini rally growing here. It is located in northeastern Pennsylvania, an area that offers some fine riding. I used to haunt some of those roads back in the days when I lived in New Jersey. It is a short ride from large population centers but far enough away to be out in the country. The venue has great amenities and I heard they are building a new hotel on site.
So, what was Q and Chrome? The Q stands for barbeque and there were several choices of Q to be had from various vendors as well as the Casino’s excellent kitchen. I should point out that the culinary team was wonderful to work with. I have posted pictures of me with the two chefs that helped with everything I need for the shows – Chef Meagan and Chef Al – Thank you both! There was even roasted corn on the cob, and as would be expected the traditional side dishes along with both beer and a whiskey and tequila bar to wet your whistle. They used a system of BBQ bucks that you purchased at central locations and then used to purchase your victuals where you choose.
The chrome was the bike and classic car show, which I hav
e posted a few pictures from. More cars were present than bikes. Based on conversations I had with attendees I attribute that to the overwhelming success that they had with previous charity car shows.
Once the word spreads about this event among riders, I expect more parity in the chrome part of the show. It is not a competition between cars and bikes. As I see it the classic car folks and bikers share so much love of all things motor and a love for the open road. We are kin.
I had a lot of fun with the shows and there are some pictures for you to enjoy. The first show would have benefited from a larger stage but we packed in and cooked up a storm.
The second show was over the top, even in my humble opinion. In so many ways the shows are a reflection of the audience and what a great crowd you were. Thank you for playing along with me!
I would be most pleased to return to a future Q and Chrome at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs. They tell me that a similar event is several years old at the Connecticut Mohegan Sun venue.
If you see these events listed for next year, mark your calendars. I hope to see you there, till then Eat Hot & Ride Safe!
It is that time of the year when the weather forecast will have a chance of thunderstorms almost everyday. That means it’s summertime riding and rallying season. While thunder may portend rain, when you are talking about the weather it has a whole other meaning when you talk about rallies – FIRE! Yes the kind of fire that happens when you mix a bunch of fun loving motorcyclists, good food and Biker Billy along with a good supply of hot peppers.
This weekend I will be bringing the unique Biker Billy style of fire to the Thunder in the Valley Rally in Johnston, Pennsylvania. I have shows on both Friday and Saturday, June 22 & 23, 2012. Check the rally brochure for the location. This has become one of my favorite rallies to perform at over the years. The folks are just so friendly that you feel right at home. It is a good example of the regional rallies that are growing all over the country and making win/win situations for both the host communities and the riders.
If you live in western Pennsylvania, eastern Ohio or West Virginia this rally is an easy ride to reach and there are some beautiful roads to ride. And of course there are the fiery Biker Billy shows and all the other fun stuff to do when you park the bike.
In the photo above, which is from last year’s Thunder in the Valley, check out the jalapeno my assistant is holding and the massive half empty garlic jar I am holding. Yeah, we cooked some smokin’ good food last year. So come to this year’s rally and the shows where you can get a taste of the wild side as only Biker Billy Cooks with Fire delivers!
Gettysburg is a place steeped in history, much of its ground long ago soaked in the blood of a conflict that helped form our nation and its effects still ripple towards us today. I have long been interested in history and I am no stranger to these fields of battle from my many motorcycle journeys to and tours of Gettysburg. Standing as I was dressed in my usual black on that hot black pavement I could not help but think of those brave American soldiers, patriots all on both sides who strove here 149 years ago. Much can be argued, debated and discussed as to the multi-faceted factors in the body politics of those distant times, yet there is a purely human aspect that can only be appreciated by being in Gettysburg. Early June there is hot, yet not as hot as early July, the season of the high water mark of the Confederacy. While asphalt was not present a century and a half ago to stand and bake upon, I could feel a sense of what the heat must have been like for those wool clad and pack laden men of arms.
If you have not yet visited this historic town, I encourage doing so, if not this summer then next year during the 150th anniversary of the famous battle. Read some older history books before your trip. Things written closer to the event will give a richer feel for the history. Go to the new visitors center, see the film and experience the restored cyclorama. It is an experience worth having. Then I encourage you to ride your bike through the battlefield park, stop at the various key places from this massive struggle of brother against brother. Soak in the heat of the sun and the humidity of eastern Pennsylvania farmland. The experience will move you. I believe you will gain a new perspective on your American heritage and the importance of being an involved voting citizen.
So much for history and the heat, what got really hot, as the sun slid on its westerly track was the event. The evening started with a gourmet barbeque dinner created by former White House Chef Walter S. Scheib. Understand that Chef Walter served both Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, meaning his BBQ had to satisfy an Arkansas and Texas palate. I heard nothing but rave reviews and the vegetarian items I sampled were dynamite, great corn bread, a roasted sweet potato dish that was beyond words and awesome vegetarian baked beans. After the attendees had time to enjoy their meal and a few cool beverages, I took the stage and had a blast cooking with some folks from the audience. Fired them right up, but they stood strong and we had a real fun show.
After my show as the sunset lit the sky a wonderful blues singer Shemekia Copeland performed a great set. What a voice and stage presence with a band that was tight. It was a most enjoyable performance. Then we finished the evening with the drawing of a raffle bike and I had the honor of pulling the ticket. Battlefield Harley-Davidson donated a 2012 Harley-Davidson Dyna Street Bob FXDB – imagine getting such an awesome bike for buying a $10.00 charity raffle ticket. It was all in all a great event and one I will look forward to doing again at a future date.
Out of the frying pan and on to the grill, the summer is off to a scorching start. Fresh from the Gettysburg Festival with a short interlude at home to cool and tune my jets and I am off again to wild and wonderful Pennsylvania. This time it is to the greater Wilkes-Barre area for a first annual event called “Q and Chrome”, but rest assured that the Mohegan Sun folks are not new to shows or “Q”. They have been doing a “Q” event at their original venue in Connecticut (hint to my CT friends – ask them to bring me up there next year.)
For those of you who are not fluent in southern slang “Q” stands for BBQ or barbeque. As old Willy Shakespeare said a pork butt by any other name is still smokin’, or something like that. Enough of Olde English, I will be there cooking some deviously delicious dishes filled with the fire that only Biker Billy can create, including a vegetarian “Q” for those of us who don’t do the meat thing.
Along with great foods to eat, cooking shows to enjoy, and music both live and DJ’ed, also there will be the chrome. There will be a potentially massive custom and classic car show and of course a bike show big enough to fill the Pocono Downs Race Track. They tell me even though it is a first year event they expect upwards of 6000 attendees. Seems they got over 35,000 for their first Oktoberfest. Did I mention multiple beer tents, and a whiskey and Tequila bar? So if you made it to the Oktoberfest, then come on over again as the weather is forecast to be great. Need I say drink responsibly and don’t drink and drive!
Fiery foods, fun, music and cool rides; everything a summer weekend should have so please ride on over and check it out. Till then Eat Hot & Ride Safe!
Summer 2012 has officially begun and along with it comes the start of my summer touring schedule. This year I am thrilled to kick off my tour with an appearance at one of America’s hottest festivals. On Saturday June 9, 2012 I will be doing a show at the 5th Annual Gettysburg Festival, in historic Gettysburg Pennsylvania. This fabulous festival celebrates all things Americana, from arts and culture to cuisine and music. Blending history and the rising new talents of many uniquely American forms of creative expression – this is not to be missed.
My good friends at Battlefield Harley-Davidson are sponsoring my show and the great daylong event called “Blues, Beer & BBQ”. The event has been designed by former White House Chef Walter Scheib and features many food choices along with a special treat. Rising young blues star Shemekia Copeland will be performing with what has been called a blast-furnace voice that delivers timeless blues, surely she will become part of the rich tradition of blues divas. And I get to fire up the stage before her show, wow talk about a hot night, BBQ; Biker Billy Cooks with Fire and soul-drenching blues look out!
To top it all Battlefield Harley-Davidson has donated a 2012 Harley-Davidson
Dyna Street Bob FXDB for a raffle to benefit the Gettysburg Festival. Tickets are only $10.00 for a bike valued at $12,999.00, you don’t need to be present to win and you can buy tickets online here.
So I hope to see many of you at this great event, come enjoy the food, fun, laughter and great music. Please stop by and say hello and watch my website, Facebook and twitter as I may post a surprise during the event.