A year ago I posted about Myrtle Beach’s bike week, which quickly devolved in the comments to an interesting but orthogonal discussion of class and gated communities. This year was fairly uneventful. The Harley week seemed to be the mellowest one since I’ve lived in the area. For big portions of the week it would be possible on my daily commute to not realize the bike week was happening. Even hot spots like the area around Suck Bang Blow had a fraction of the traffic I was prepared for. I don’t know why this is, but if I had to hazard a guess it would involve the price of gas.
This week is the Atlantic Beach Bike Rally aka “The Sports Bike Rally” aka “Black Bike Week.” I just dropped the dog off this morning for a bath and went to the beach to kill some time while that went on. Again, there was a little insanity on Ocean Boulevard but not as much as I was prepared for. I misunderstood when they were undoing the one-way traffic pattern. I thought it ended at 8 AM today but it was still on when I got there at 9:30 AM. One thing I like about spending some of my lunch hours driving randomly in the beach area is that now I know ways to avoid traffic better. I was able to get from the south end of Ocean up around Bummz with only a few blocks on Kings Highway, and then from Bummz to the mall seeing hardly any bikes whatsoever.
I live 15 miles inland so the bike rallies don’t cause me much consternation and I have the option of mostly avoiding them if I want to. For me the only real downside of lower turnouts is that I don’t want businesses I frequent to close if they don’t get enough busy seeing dollars to see them through the winter. That’s party of the life of a full-time resident of a tourist town – trying to dole out your business to keep joints open that you want to eat at or shop at in November or February.