Wow!! I slipped away for a few days and did absolutely no promotional work and came home to several sales!! What a great weekend!!
Seriously, I again missed a few posts over the weekend. (This is getting to be a habit!) I’ll try to do better next weekend. (Then again, we’ve got lots planned for the holiday so, maybe not.)
Well, Friday afternoon we headed West into the Allegheny Mountains to Johnstown, PA for Thunder in the Valley 2009. In just twelve years of existence, Thunder has become one of the largest annual motorcycle rallies East of the Mississippi. For these few days each year, the population of Johnstown more than doubles with the arrival of upwards of 250,000 bikers (not to mention those of us driving in on 4 wheels!) While the event is centered in downtown Johnstown, activities have spread out to a number of locations in the general region to include events in Richland Township, Windber and Ebensburg.
Although the main thrust of the rally is Friday through Sunday, you could pretty much do something continuously from mid-day Wednesday through 5 p.m. on Sunday. There is an array of free music performances at a number of locations all day Friday, Saturday and Sunday and in the afternoon and evening on Wednesday and Thursday. (Fifty-three bands/musical acts are listed among the official events and even more play at various clubs around town as part of their regular weekend fare. Many of those performing on the sanctioned stages perform multiple times throughout the weekend.) Numerous runs, charity rides and such take place throughout the weekend. Professional wrestling matches, stunt rider performances, vendor displays, specialty parties, etc. take place in addition to three parades. The Hot Nights/Cool Lights Night Parade on Thursday evening features all makes and models of bikes but they must be decorated with LED and/or after-market lights to participate. On Saturday, there is a Children’s parade and the Grand Thunder Parade featuring the Budweiser Clydesdales, marching groups, celebrities and custom motorcycles.
This year’s attendance has not been fully tallied but it is believed they set a record. I can attest to the fact that it was extremely crowded in town. Food and souvenir vendors sold more merchandise than ever before despite this rocky economy. Other vendors of biker paraphernalia also reported fantastic sales as did local businesses. Thunder in the Valley 2009 was another great success!!! This was our third year attending this event and we plan to return again next year.
I hope you all had a great weekend, too. (If not, maybe you should plan to come to Thunder next year!!)