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Nov Florida Events 2017

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Gulf Coast Ladies Motorcycle Rally

By Marta Rose-Thorpe

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The 2017 Gulf Coast Ladies Motorcycle Rally was pure fun-in-the-sun during April Fool’s Weekend in Panama City Beach, Florida. Attendees rode into “The World’s Most Beautiful Beaches” south from Atlanta and came up north from Ft. Myers… and Florida cities in between. Hosted by Harley-Davidson of Panama City Beach, the Thunder Angels and volunteers, this event kicked off springtime with beautiful weather, live music, great vendors and a clan of happy women doing what they love to do: RIDE!

On Friday, March 31 the rally kicked off with a “Final Friday Bike Night” party featuring old country greats Tex & the South Forty, an Outpost favorite. The cold beer was flowing, served up by American Legion Post 402 & VFW Post 10555, with free Craft Beer Tastings by local brewery Nivol Brewing Co.

Saturday morning started with a beautiful North Florida sunrise, coffee and camaraderie. At 10 AM the Thunder Angels lead a Guided Scenic Ride that headed west to three points: the nature-packed Conservation Park; the stunningly beautiful Eden Gardens in South Walton County; and the biker-favorite Outpost off Highway 20. Attendees returned to Harley in the early afternoon and were treated to a free bike wash, a tasty lunch donated by Chicken Salad Chick, a ladies-themed vendor village packed with apparel, jewelry, health products, pin striping, sunglasses and more. The Don Pedigo Band headed down from Nashville for two Saturday afternoon concerts, and Barbara Jones of the Thunder Angels lead a Storytelling Hour on the Chill Deck, where rally-goers gathered ‘round and swapped riding tales. A five-class bike competition took place in the late afternoon with home-made trophies by BC Custom Metalworks. That evening the fun progressed to Newby’s for live music by everyone’s favorite local reggae band, Heritage.

On Sunday morning, the sunshine continued to sparkle while Night Al Productions supplied karaoke on the Harley Stage, and Rally volunteers served up mimosas and breakfast burritos on the Big Deck. By 12 noon most riders hit the road via one of four routes: Highways 231, 77, 79 or Old 98. On the way home ladies were asked to take a few selfie photos to later post onto the Gulf Coast Ladies Motorcycle Rally Facebook page with fun captions.

Throughout the weekend, a photo competition was taking place behind the scenes. Ladies were asked to take photos all weekend and post to the Facebook page. The photos could be submitted into one of four classes of photos, and the best in each class won a prize. Most Scenic won a wine basket donated by Triple H Dustless Blasting. Sportiest won a 4-team Golf Basket from Holiday Golf Club in Panama City Beach. Goofiest won a one-hour massage donated by local PCB masseuse Tom Nummy; and Most Unique won a two-night stay at Copperhead Lodge in Blairsville, GA, donated by Michelle Evans. To view winners as well as all rally photos, go to Facebook/sandandsass.

Harley-Davidson is one of the most evocative and recognizable lifestyle brands in the world. The company has wholly embraced its identity as the vehicular embodiment of freedom, individualism, rebellion and the American way. Come visit Harley-Davidson of Panama City Beach, “The World’s Friendliest Harley Dealership,” at 14700 Panama City Beach Parkway, one mile east of Pier Park, and visit us online for event updates at PCBHarley.com.

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