Category Archives: Director’s Blog

It is with great sadness . . .

. . . that I post about the passing of Budd Ray.  There is no-one who was part of this group between 2002 and 2008 whose life was not touched in a positive way by Budd and Carol Ray.  Although formidable in appearance, Budd’s heart was even larger.  His contributions to our Road Captain group have survived well beyond his tenure, as have Carol’s contributions as Activities Officer for several years.  I know that our collective hearts go out to Carol and her family during this difficult time.

Budd will be missed . . . .

Don Oldaker

Calico Ride – 2009

Halloween has come and gone and so has the Calico/Stateline run. Gary did a great job organizing this event, as usual and we had over 45 bikes show up for the ride. There must have been 60 to 70 HOG members who settled in at Peggy Sue’s for breakfast. Just after we got seated, the Pomona Valley HOG group showed up and shared a room with some of our members. Calico was decorated up for Halloween and some of the costumes were fantastic. After visiting Calico, we headed for Stateline and Buffalo Bills. From what I heard, the group had a pretty good time once they all gathered up. As for the ride home, mine was great. I decided this year to curtail the adult beverages because I wanted to watch the World Series. There was no place to sit and watch the game so I headed up early and retired for the night. I had planned a big day on Sunday and with the time change, I knew I would be pretty tired. (I had been fighting a nasty cold the week before and had not slept real well.)

Sunday morning, I woke up bright and early and treated myself to a good omlet breakfast before suiting up. I had told some HOG members of my plans but nobody met me at the 7am departure time so off I went. I didn’t head back on Hwy 15…instead, I rode into Las Vegas and took Hwy 160 over towards Pahrump. Once there, I stopped for fuel and headed for Shoshone on Hwy 352. From there, I hit Hwy 190 and rode north to Death Valley Junction. Although it was a little cool when I took off, the sun soon rose and the temperature evened out at a comfortable 80+ so I dumped my chaps and coat and rode on. I stopped at Furnace Creek in Death Valley and toured around a little before heading to Stovepipe Wells. There I bought a souvenir and had a soda before heading up the grade towards Panamint Springs. Just before Panamint Springs, I turned off on Hwy 178…yep, you guessed it, and rode towards Ridgecrest.

Another stop in Ridgecrest for lunch and fuel and up over Walker Pass and through the canyon into B-town. I got home about 4pm after a 431 mile ride on a beautiful day. The bike ran great and it was rather pleasant to be lead and sweep in my own little world. Although group riding is a blast, sometimes it’s fun to get out alone and savor the reasons we ride. This was one of those days!!!

Next year, I’m going to advertise this ride a little more and get some others to join me. It’s a great run and done right, not too awful long. Hope you can join me because this may become a yearly thing for the Calico run.

Dave Fisher

Big Stuff Happening at Chapter 1580!

It’s hard to believe that September has come and gone.  Our attendance at the monthly general meeting was a little down but the event in Reno drew some HOGs up there so it was expected.  Those who came got to enjoy some pretty good videos with the star of the show being the DVD we’re going to present at the annual California State HOG Rally next week in Roseville, Ca.  HOG needs to recognize and thank John Cleveland, the author/director, actors Mike and Wes Coble, and Producer/Video Guru, Owen Freeman.  These four guys put together a short DVD that is both informative and hilarious.  Hopefully you’ll get to see it in the near future.

Speaking of the State Rally, Stephanie and I are heading up next Wednesday so we can be there when everyone arrives.  We also want to get some pointers on setting up the rally even though we helped in Victorville.  Our presentation will be made on Saturday morning and from what I hear, there are some other chapters competing for the event.

I did finish our written proposal and sent it off to J.T. Hasley, our Regional HOG Director.  J.T.  has begun his review and let me know that we look pretty good to him. Hopefully we’ll look better than the rest.  I know one thing for sure; the other chapters will have to work pretty hard to top our DVD that will start the presentation.  If you’re making the trek to the State Rally, we’ll be camping somewhere in the fairgrounds…just look for our HOG banner!!!

Our annual Christmas party is shaping up to be another great evening.  I would like to thank John and Katie Houchin who stepped up and offered to cater our dinner.  John and Katie were at the party last year when we had the “snafu” regarding the meal and promised a better meal this year.  (The Houchin’s own a large catering business here in Bakersfield and have a lot of experience into this area.)  For dinner this year, we’ll be treated to Prime Rib and Montreal Chicken with a host of other great sounding side dishes.  We’ll be meeting at the Heritage Dante Hall on Wilson Road and once again, HOG will be buying the price down for each HOG member and their guest to $20.00.  We’ll have a short program and the same DJ will be playing music for our entertainment again this year.  He did a great job last year and kept the dance floor rockin’ so we decided to leave that part alone.

If you’re interested in doing some riding, October will be a great month.  Val and Gary Crawford will be hosting the Fun Run to Porterville.  I think we’re headed to the Black Bear Diner!!!  That’s always a great ride and good meal.  I haven’t heard where the Dinner Ride will go but Gary is also working on that.  If that isn’t enough, the Crawfords are planning the annual Calico/Stateline Run on Halloween.  HOG will depart BHD at 9:00am and head to Peggy Sue’s in Barstow for breakfast.  We’ll visit Calico Ghost Town and then make a dash for Stateline to spend the night.  This was a helluva party last year so come join us and have some fun this year.  Make your reservations at Buffalo Bill’s and spend the night laughing and doing that other part of our HOG motto…HAVING FUN!!!

Speaking of riding, HOG will also have a Hot Dog Run on October 24th.  Again, this will be an open ride so invite any of your “non-Harley” riding friends to come along.  We’re going to head over to Morro Bay and enjoy a day on the coast.  There is a small hot dog vendor on Harbor Avenue so I’m going to hold true to the run and have a hot dog.  Don’t worry, if you want to go down to the harbor and have fish and chips or clam chowder, I’m sure nobody will mind.  We’re not sure how we’re coming home but who really cares?  Hope to see you there.

We did recognize our Member(s) of the Quarter at the last meeting.  HOG felt the Crawfords had been working to make our chapter one of the best and awarded them our 3rd Quarter Member of the Quarter award.  Val and Gary really deserved our recognition and will enjoy our annual Christmas Party on us.

Lastly, I want to again let you know that we’ll be having our first ever November General Meeting.  I’m working on some special plans for this meeting as it’ll be our last meeting of 2009 and we deserve to have a great time.  HOG will be giving back to our chapter by awarding 3 gift certificates to HOG members who just show up.  Nothing to buy, just show us your current local HOG card (your annual membership must also be current and we’ll have an up to the minute list) and you’ll receive a raffle ticket.  During the meeting, we’ll draw tickets to win the gift certificates.  Oh, by the way, each gift certificate will be worth $400.00.  Mark the date on your calendar…NOVEMBER 19th…the week before Thanksgiving.

We’re quickly running out of great riding weather so get out and ride while you can.  Pretty soon you’ll be wishing it was warmer so you didn’t have to wear all the leather!!!

Gotta run…

Ride Safe…
Dave Fisher

Bakersfield HOG… Even On An Early Sunday Morning…

Today, Sunday, August 30, 2009, Bakersfield HOG scheduled an early morning picture for our State Rally presentation. We put this information out at the general meeting and hoped to get 20 or so bikes under the Bakersfield sign near the Crystal Palace to shoot a little video.

I got there about 6:15 and checked the area out with Mike Long. As we stood there, more and more bikes began pulling into the parking lot and before we knew it, we have over 55 motorcycles there for the picture. Bakersfield Police was nice enough to block the intersection and in a short ten minutes, HOG moved all 55 riders into position under the sign, filmed our presentation, and had all the bikes pull out. ALL IN UNDER 10 MINUTES.

The HOG members that came were very quick to line up, more than 3 deep, and left the gathering safely and orderly with no mishaps. Quite a feat when you have so many bikes in such a small area.

The enthusiasm of the crowd was contagious. Everyone had a great time and we didn’t hear one complaint about how early the shoot was. Some of our members came from Frazier Park to make it into the picture.

This activity is indicative of our HOG organization. We have a great group of quality people willing to take a few moments out of their morning to make our presentation to the State Rally Committee great.

I want to thank everyone who showed up for this event. I also want to thank HRC John Clevelend, HRC Wes Coble, and RC Mike Coble for creating and working on the film. From what I’ve seen, it’s great and should go over well.

See you on the road…


HOG Improvements

Well, I’ve just returned from my first vacation and we’re embarking on our 2nd vacation up north to the Redwoods. We’re hoping the weather is a little more conducive to riding as this heat here in the valley is typically stifling!

HOG has recently purchased some tables and chairs to be stored at Bakersfield Harley-Davidson. We have 6 nice tables and currently, 36 chairs. We’re shooting for 48 chairs but we want them all to match so we decided to wait on another shipment. HRC Wes Coble researched the tables and chairs and Assistant Director Don Oldaker made the purchase.

Now I’m sure some of our members are wondering why we needed chairs. Have you been to a HOG BBQ lately??? There’s generally a whole bunch of people and nowhere to sit except on the planters in the sun. (Remember that stifling heat I mentioned earlier?) We also host some events where it would be nice to have a table and some chairs for whatever we’re doing.

HOG picked up the chairs on July 11th just before our monthly BBQ. We had some volunteers set them up even before the BBQ started and within 5 minutes, two tables were full of HOG members sitting around talking with their coffee and donuts. When I saw that, I knew the tables and chairs were a good idea and doing what we’d planned.

So, if you’ve been avoiding the monthly HOG BBQ cuz there was no place to sit…come on out and sit a spell and join us. We may even set some up on Saturday mornings just to sit and chew the fat (or donuts) for a while with HOG friends.

Y’all ride safe and I’ll see you when I get back…

Dave Fisher