Friday, August 20, 2010

Mods vs. Rockers bike rally


By Kimberlee Love via :

When Larry Fletcher organized Chicago's first Mods vs. Rockers bike and scooter rally in 2005 he had a wealth of experience from which to draw. Mr. Fletcher, a beer importer and vintage bike enthusiast, had organized The Brighton Bash, a vintage bike event, at his Ace Cafe Chicago in 1997, and he continued to organize vintage bike shows and ride-ins with the 59 Club Chicago throughout the next several years.

When Laura Pliskin, a freelance art department coordinator from Pittsburgh, decided to organize Pittsburgh's first Rockers vs. Mods event (Mods vs. Rockers and Rockers vs. Mods are used somewhat interchangeably) she had no experience whatsoever. What she did have was enthusiasm for the vintage bike scene -- and for Mods and Rockers culture.

Ms. Pliskin was first exposed to British Mods and Rockers online -- Mods being tidy skinny-tie, suit-jacketed scooter riders, and Rockers being rather less tidy leather-jacketed motorcyclists, so named for their love of American rock 'n' roll. Reaching their heyday in 1960s Britain, Mods and Rockers gained notoriety after several well-publicized -- some say well-exploited -- brawls were reported by the hungry British press. Ms. Pliskin devoured everything she could read about them on the Web and remembers thinking, "How amazing to have been alive during that time, when two of motorcycling's subcultures were so dedicated to their passions."

After finding that Mods vs. Rockers events were cropping up around the country, she wondered, "Pittsburgh has the vintage bike culture, so why not have an event here?" She was already a legend in her social circle for organizing outrageous theme parties, but she knew it would take more than the idea to make an event happen. Fate stepped in when a co-worker remarked that his girlfriend, Nicole White, was starting a party planning business. The two women met and bonded instantly.

Ms. Pliskin is a motorcyclist -- she rides a 1969 Honda CB350 -- and is the self-described "idea man" of the duo. Ms. White doesn't ride, and is the more grounded of the two. Ms. Pliskin says Ms. White has been instrumental in organizing the nuts and bolts of Rockers vs. Mods Pittsburgh, securing such necessities as insurance coverage... Read more

Rockers vs. Mods

Where: SouthSide Works parking lot.

When: 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday.



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