Originally Published In The January 2011 Issue Of Cycle Source Magazine
Well, another year in the books and those few things that mark a proper year in motorcycling have to be remembered as well. The Indian Larry Block Party has been and will always be one of those things for the staff here at the magazine. After returning last year for their annual Brooklyn Blowout at the new Williamsburg Location at 400 Union Ave. Brooklyn, NY, they were ready to up the ante and kick it up. We were all ready to blow some steam off so we headed to the city. Our trip started with the regular slew of phone calls, one after another asking who was going and what time everyone should be on the road by. From what we could tell, Steve Peffer was bringing the Steel City Choppers’ bus, Mitch and Tom were coming in from Jersey, Diva Di was coming down from Canada and Chip was bringing Melissa up from Tennessee. This would be a hell of a collection from our guys but when combined with the rest of the Block Party traffic, I couldn’t wait to see it all.
Mark and I loaded up the company truck and headed out the evening before, rolling into New York just before midnight. I thought we had just enough time to grab a slice but not before we met up with the crew that had already been there helping. We stood in front of the shop tossing comments out at each other as every walk of life in the world went by. This is a great spot since anyone who knows Bobby can tell you, he’s the king of the one-liner. I’ve actually seen him with so much to say as freaks stroll by that he actually stays quiet, like he’s on overload. It’s the equivalent of our “Guess what I do in my real life” game that we play on Main Street in Daytona every year. Anyway, a few hours and a couple dozen barrels of Brooklyn Brewery beer, we get unloaded and are ready to head for Bobby and Elisa’s couch. We stop for the aforementioned slice at Lenny & John’s pizza, some nice greasy garlic balls, and off for a good solid three hours of sleep.
The morning comes way too early in Brooklyn but the crew that is there to help gets a full load of bagels and coffee in fine New York tradition. We were all buzzing around trying to get things set up for the day to come. All at once the street was blocked off, the stage went up and almost no one noticed the giant bus in the middle of the street. Apparently Bobby and Steve had a misunderstanding that it was a full size bus Steve was bringing but after a few minutes of rearranging, the layout all was back on track. Slick Rick and the New York Rumblers made a great showing with Rick’s ’32 Ford pick-up. It’s a killer truck with a 3 ½ inch chop and 4 ½ inch drop. These cats were nice enough to help explain to a couple of newbies that unlike some motorcycle people, it is NOT okay to just sit on someone’s hot rod. Rick has been coming to the Block Party since the beginning and his club’s cars and booth have become a staple at the event.
As the bands took the stage, one after another, Joey Ice from Ice Fantasies did an awesome sculpture of Larry riding a bike as the crowd watched in total awe. Man, this cat never missed a beat and his art was spot on. The day’s headlining act was Memphis Morticians but you can take anything away from the others including a command performance by the Great Fredini who thrilled the crowd with a Coney Island sword swallowing act. A Sinner’s Nomad named Alberto was on hand the whole way from Venice, Italy. He owns a joint there called “Gasoline” that he describes as a “Biker’s Bar.” This cat was great to talk with since he was obviously in his glory to be running the streets of New York in and around the Block Party. But this event is so much more than a street party. Oh, it’s cool enough that the good neighbors and city actually permit them to shut down a major avenue and reroute the city bus, but the collection of people that this brings to the city is a blast all in itself. People like Shane McMahon, El Pitts, Bert Baker, Roland from Spectro Oil, who signed on as a first year sponsor, and Tyson Beckford, who gets his bike serviced at Indian Larry. Tyson’s main gig has been as a male model for Ralph Lauren but a few of you might also recognize his name from the TV show “Make Me A Supermodel” that airs on Bravo. But like I said, you never seem to be surprised at the characters they draw in. In closing, Indian Larry would like to thank their sponsors for this year’s Block Party: Genuine Motorworks, Brooklyn Brewery, Spectro Oils, and Cycle Source. The date for 2011 has already been set for September 24th 2011, so mark your calendars and don’t let another year pass by without making this one. Until then, check out their new look on indianlarry. com