Record breaking crowds, sizzling entertainment and thousands of dollars raised for local charities marked Laconia Bike Week 2009 at The Lobster Pound. Visitors from across the globe converged on The Lobster Pound and the newly remodeled Laconia Roadhouse for the 86th Annual Laconia Bike Week.
The Roadhouse, a 15,000 square foot entertainment complex together with its recent 7000 square foot full service restaurant addition complete with a roof deck bar and dining area, was at the center of the action and saw as many as 40,000 visitors during the nine day event. Blues Legend, James Montgomery packed the complex along with the Tom Dixon Country Band every night.
Visitors enjoyed a number of giveaways from sponsor Wild Turkey and their famous Turkey Girls. All State Insurance also set up shop complete with models and famous custom bike builder, Dave Perewitz. The crowd-pleasing Jack 94 Rum Custom Bike Build Off boasted four custom bike builders who built four choppers from scratch while competing for a grand prize of $5000. The entertainment culminated with Una and her motorcycle dare devil show. Complete with mid-air flips and twirls, at one point her assistant hung from the bottom of the bike while 60 feet in the air.
Bike Week also boasted a jump in philanthropic activity this year, raising over $10,000 for the Have A Heart Children's Cancer Fund. USA Lock and Load also raised $2,500 for Operation Home Front with funds going to assist veterans returning from combat with Russ from Wild Turkey getting the crowd to dig into their pockets and buy raffle tickets.
The 86th Anniversary of Laconia Bike Week proved itself true to its roots. Nine days of food, incredible entertainment and custom choppers confirmed that Laconia Bike Week is well-deserving as one of the longest lasting and largest events of its kind. Ultimately leaving visitors counting down the days to next years' festivities.
The Weirs Beach Lobster Pound property was originally the site of one of the first Howard Johnsons in the country. A fire destroyed the Howard Johnson and Gandy Dancer Saloon 37 years ago. The Lobster Pound was then built and is in its 36th year of operation, The Lobster Pound has been a participant in the Laconia Rally for 27 years. The property was purchased from Lou Gaynor and Harvey Chernin by the Ray family three years ago. Major improvements were made when the Ray family purchased the property including a new 7000 square foot restaurant, an improved 15,000 square foot Roadhouse entertainment complex and becoming a corporate sponsor of the Laconia Race and Rally Association.