• Fundamentals for Fun at Fifty-Five

    1. Dare to try new things

    2. Say yes to opportunities

    3. Relax, smile, dance away your worries

    4. If not now, when?

    5. Just do it (you can analyze later)

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    Sandman Hotels - 25% off room rates
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A Roaring Success!

# 49 – Be in Port Dover for a Friday the 13th biker gathering

Bikes and tractor shuttle on Highway 6 coming into Port Dover in the morning of Friday, July 13, 2012

Every Friday the 13th since 1981, motorcyclists have roared into the tiny beach community of Port Dover, Ontario for a one-day gathering. Some years, there are three such Fridays in a calendar year. Other years, only one. Sometimes the weather is cold and miserable, but for last Friday’s event, it was a perfect day – blue sky and sunshine all day long.

As one t-shirt claimed, “All roads lead to Dover”, and every Friday the 13th, those roads are closed to vehicles other than motorcycles.

Main Street, Port Dover

We went down the day before to ensure we could reach the marina and our sailboat which would be our home for the next few days. On Thursday evening, we walked into town and already there were stages with bands playing, tents for vendors, and crowds of people wandering around.

Early Friday morning, the steady roar of motorcycles began before 6 a.m. as bikers began to arrive to enjoy the day. We wandered over mid-morning and there were bikes as far as the eye could see in all directions .

Steady stream (and hum) of bikes

Line-up on the bridge

Downtown streets were lined with parked motorcycles and pedestrians. The aroma of fried food filled the air. T-shirt vendors shouted out above the sounds of live music. It was organized chaos. Well organized, with police at every corner directing foot and bike traffic, signs indicating where bikes could be parked and the direction of the flow of traffic on side streets. The traffic lights had been turned off for the day, and the lift bridge over the river was not operational.

I saw bikes from the Yukon in northern Canada to Florida in the southern U.S., as well as from a wide range of Canadian provinces and U.S. states. There was also one bike with a European plate that we didn’t recognize. Bikers in their leathers, helmets with decorations that matched the designs on the bikes, all-body tattoos, and stuffed animals tucked into bike bags. There was even a small dog wagging its tail happily in a sidecar.

A Canadian beaver along for the ride!

Noisy? Yes. Friendly too.

And by the next morning, Port Dover had returned to normal, with the exception of one or two tents in the school grounds, some portable toilets that hadn’t been picked up yet, and a few Friday the 13th t-shirt vendors trying to sell the last of their stock.

The next one won’t be until September 2013, so I’m glad I made it out to this one!

For more photos of the day, check out my Photos and Quotes page.

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  • Julie Wise is …

    a writer, author (Dream BIGGER: Reclaiming a Life of Joy and Ease), life/relationship coach and an intuitive healer by day. By night, she dances flamenco, thrives on chocolate and good red wine (shiraz will do!) She secretly plots to change the world, one dream at a time.
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