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It’s Rockerbox Motofest 2013, presented by Fuel Café on August 3 in Milwaukee, Wis., and that one, small concession does not appear to have dampened turnout or enthusiasm in the least.
Reveling in its tenth year, Rockerbox dubs itself the premier Wisconsin motorcycle show, and few would dispute; it is a dizzying cross section of “everything motorcycle,” in street festival format, all wrapped in a vibe of super cool. That, plus cheap beer, to boot. Discount Ramps’ Zak and John, both first-timers from our production department, went to soak it in, and, armed with their cameras, found a generous array of sights.
Covering five city blocks in Milwaukee’s happening Riverwest neighborhood, Rockerbox draws 3,000+ motorcycles of every persuasion and an estimated 6,000 – 8,000 enthusiasts (based on 2012 numbers), despite its proximity to a certain industry icon with fanatical fanatics. For this one day, bikes hailing from manufacturers of every corner of the earth mingle and flirt in a random mix of choppers, cruisers, racers, sports and sidecars to enjoy goods and merchandise, demonstrations, a ride-in bike show, delicious food, live music and some of the best, most diverse people-watching at any rally, anywhere.
One of this year’s special events was the Skid Lid Silent Auction, featuring the work of national and international helmet artists, as well as a raffle for a gorgeous custom-built Triumph 650. Proceeds went to benefit an organization called the Steel Shoe Fund, a non-profit that supports injured racers.
The bike show is a highlight of Rockerbox, with entries classified by the judges. Categories include Best Café Racer, Best Rat Bike, Best European, Best Scooter or Cool as F^#%, among others, and the judges help determine what motorcycle is best suited for which category.
More than 60 vendors display their wares at Rockerbox, both businesses and private parties, new, used, what have you, and it is a resource to behold. In fact, Zak was pretty surprised to find a guy selling carburetor jets and snagged a card for future reference.
Both Zak and John gave Rockerbox an enthusiastic thumbs up and plan to attend next year’s outing, either as spectators, or, hopefully, to show some of our own Black Widow equipment, stuff like lift jacks, wheel chocks, scissor lifts and hydraulic lift tables. They even spied some of our motorcycle service equipment on site, so it seems like it would be a good place for us to make an appearance.
The guys chronicled their day at Rockerbox with stills and video, including John’s favorite, an AC/DC cover band, so take a look to get a feel for this cool event. Hope to see you at Rockerbox Motofest 2014.