Rude Bikers NOT Welcome

You know, I’ve been trying to remain positive among all the noise dealing with the “biker” mentality. I know they bring a lot of money into our area and they are great for local businesses, no matter what you say. I talked to a friend that has his hands in several resorts and said that over this weekend, many of his properties are rented 100% and the others are in the 80’s and 90’s. But I digress.

I just want to share an experience with everyone and hopefully a few bikers will read it and share it with their friends.  This experience was not pleasant, and unfortunately (or thankfully for the bikers) I was not present when it happened, but it really hit close to home and severely affected my tone and attitude towards the “biker-crowd” this weekend. As my wife recounted her experience, almost being brought to tears, my blood boiled.  I grew angrier than I had been in a long time, and I angered more at the fact that there was nothing I could do about it.  Being a follower of Christ, I do pretty good at turning the other cheek when it’s just me involved, but bring my family into it?  And the story changes.

As my wife was traveling down Back Beach Road Friday, after going through the intersection of the newly renamed R Jackson Blvd, she had passed through the intersection in the far right “passing” lane.  With her turn-signal on, she patiently waited for an open spot in the center lane as her lane was quickly ending.  I emphasize the word patient, because she is patient, I am not.  She found a hole, (or so she’d thought) and merged in.  Of course, being Thunder Beach, there were bikers everywhere, and she happened to have pulled in front of several that were non-to-happy about it.

At this point, she being in the right lane, one of the bikers went up the right side of her mini-van and another sped past her on her left side.  They pulled in front of her and slammed on their brakes.  “I thought I was going to hit them,” she said, “two bikers with no helmets slammed on their brakes in front of me, I thought I was going to hit them.”  They slowed her and the traffic behind her to 20 mph on Back Beach Road.

After a few minutes, she changed lanes to go around them, and they cut her off, preventing her from passing.  Of course, at this point, she honked only to be rebutted with the middle finger the two bikers in front of her.  They then slowed even more, went to the side of her mini-van and began yelling profanities, with MY kids in the car.

Of course, at this time in the story, she’s almost crying.  “I was scared, I had my kids in the car, it was like I was in the movies, I couldn’t believe this was happening, they were yelling at me, saying bad words, my kids could here it and were scared, I’m a mom in a mini-van, how big could this make them feel?”  Good question, how big could this make them feel, yelling at a mom in a mini-van with three kids in the car traveling down Back Beach Road.

Could she had made a better decision in her merging into traffic?  Sure, we can always find fault in what we do in order to have a different outcome.  But, what gave the right to those bikers to harass a mom in a mini-van with kids. So someone pulls in front of  you, and you don’t like it, do you pull up next to her and yell profanities to her and her children?  Does that make you feel all big and tough?  If you read this, if you are the one that did this and you read this, you are a coward.  You are not welcome in Panama City Beach again.  You can keep your money.  Rude bikers are not welcome here.

When you come to Panama City Beach, we don’t owe you anything because you pump life into our economy for 3 lousy days.  This is our town, we live here.  You can’ t expect everyone to make sacrifices because of you.  Everyone is watching you, and if you don’t play nice, you’re going to hack off the wrong people, and at some point, you won’t be welcome here anymore either.

We can have a pieceful coexistence.  We do enjoy the business and the money you bring our area, but if you are going to act like a bunch of jerks while you’re here, then don’t come back.

61 thoughts on “Rude Bikers NOT Welcome

  1. Jason,

    Here is what is on the HD Website for HD of Myrtle Beach
    about the Rally.

    Every One that thinks that the people don’t want the Rally in Myrtle Beach needs to read this. I copied and pasted this from the HD Website.

    From Harley Davidson of Myrtle Beach and Horry County Residents:

    We look forward to seeing all bikers for the 69th Annual Spring Bike Week (May 8-17) in Horry County (everywhere but the City of Myrtle Beach) in 2009.

    The City of Myrtle Beach has initiated a media campaign designed to deter the good, law abiding motorcycle riders from coming to our area. The information being disseminated by the Grand Strand Chamber of Commerce and City of Myrtle Beach does not accurately portray the views of the people of Horry County. The majority of people and businesses look forward to you visiting and desperately rely on your visiting to make it through the year.

    Furthermore, the City of Myrtle Beach has never played a role in bike week and has made it clear they don’t want to play a role. In years past, over 90% of the events taking place were outside the limits of the City of Myrtle Beach. The new rules and regulations really WILL NOT affect your visit or any of the activities and events.

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  2. Walter,

    Please don’t get me wrong and not intending to be negative.

    If Panama City Beach is wanting to become a Family Vacation Spot, should it not have things for the kids of all ages to do after the sun goes down. When I was a child, my parents had a place at PCB and the fun part as a kid was getting to go to either Petticoat Junction or Miracle Strip Amusement Park at night with friends and ride the rides, etc… The only things to do now are putt-putt, shopping, go carts, and Ship Wreck Island (and it has not changed for years) that is affordable. Wave runners, para-sailing is not cheap and only last about 30 minutes.

    I was one of those bikers that came down for Thunder Beach, I am retired military and I bring my family down to PCB during the summer now only for the weekend becuase my son gets bored when it gets dark because there is nothing for him to do. Does Panama City Beach plan on building another Amusement Park that will attract families with older children.

    We now go down to Orlando for extended vacations because of all the Amusement/Theme Parks (ie.. Disney/Universal Studios/Sea World). If PCB is to truly become a Family Vacation Spot it will need to be able to provide entertainment for children of all ages, not just pre-school (age 3 thru 10).

    Please don’t get me wrong, I beleive that visitors should respect the places that they visit as guest, but without the right things and the money to make it happen, how is PCB going to get to that point that you would like to see.

    I went to PCB as a Spring breaker in the early 80’s, so PCB was welcoming Spring Breakers in the 80’s and my brother, who is 60 went down to PCB in the late 60’s for Spring Break. It has always been a place for Spring Breakers, not something that has only been going on for the past 10-15 years.

    I have asked the same question on this blog to thoses that keep throwing out that they want PCB to be a Family Vacation Spot Only and get rid of Bike Week/Spring Break. But when I ask the question about Amusement Parks to attract families with older kids I get no response. Why is this. I would really love to know if PCB is in talks with anyone to bring/build an Amusement Park.

    I do not believe that PCB will be able to make the change to A Family Only Vacation Spot until it has things for children/kids of all ages to enjoy.

    I may be wrong, but I been going to PCB since I was 5 yrs old and nothing has changed except that you can no longer see the beach because of all the new High Rise Condo’s.

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  3. Those of us who would like our destination to be “Family Friendly” do not necessarily want it to be “A Family Only Vacation Spot”. There are many tourists without children who prefer to visit destinations that are “Family Friendly”.

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  4. I better clarify my post above:
    I am not advocating against Thunder Beach. In fact, the organizers of Thunder Beach try very hard to keep the event “Family Friendly”. Unfortunately, some of the participants(both tourists and businesses) do not conform.

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  5. Unfortunately, bikers don’t look or sound the part of the happy tourist on vacation, and are easy prey for criticism. Whether it’s spring break, hordes of people on bicycles, marathon participants or bikers…incidents happen…it’s all part of the package of being a resident of Bay County.

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  6. To begin I am a local – lived here all my life. Last year a biker pulled out in front of me, mind you I drive a heavy SUV – This biker almost caused me to flip because I had to take evasive action, I was actually driving on two wheels for a brief second. Next time I am not so sure I will risk my life to save someone whom was not paying attention to the roadway. Just want to remind those of you who ride your motorcycles, pay attention to the roadways! Its not only my duty to pay attention but you the bikers as-well.

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  7. There is no excuse for any driver to behave poorly whether in a car or on a motorcycle. I have seen horrific driving habits from both type drivers. This particular rally seemed to have more participants than any other I’ve attended over the past six years. I came with family and bike club members, stayed at the Edgewater Beach Resort, toured many of the stores, parks, and establishments, and ate at some of the best restaurants. With the good there will always be bad and unfortunately one family had a bad experience with a biker. As many have said before…you don’t judge all by an individuals actions. Yes…many of the bikers are young, immature, love to rev the motors, get drunk, and carry on in a manner which I’ve seen immediately handled in most cases by the Panama City Beach Police. One must, however, assume that most participants in the rally are good people. It’s sad that you should feel so disgruntled because of one individuals rudeness. We all know as well that two wrongs don’t make a right. On a positive note I thoroughly enjoyed visiting PC as I do every rally and appreciate the hospitality. I enjoy the security with the presence of the PCB Police Department. The community is one of which provides beautiful beaches and entertainment. For the record, however, I am one of those bikers that spends a lot of my own hard earned money which does help with your economic needs in the community. The beach is a public land of which both visitors and residents can enjoy. No matter what you say or do…it will not change the fact that twice a year Panama City will host the bike rally just as it will the Spring Break. Panama City enjoys the tourism dollars just as the condo owners, hotel and motel owners, restaurant owners, service station and convenience store owners, and every other business type owner does. Instead of branding the entire biker community as “evil doers,” chalk the experience up to that of one that could happen in any city or town in the US. Do that and I won’t brand all Floridians as disgruntled short tempered people who don’t know how to express themselves better.

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