An artistic celebration
Hurricane Mills, Tenn., Sept. 28–Oct. 1—A perfect blend of artistry… motorcycles and music! That is how I would describe the inaugural Tennessee Motorcycle and Music Revival and BC Moto Invitational. Located at the Loretta Lynn Ranch in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee, this event is definitely worth the trip. Upon check-in, I was greeted by the friendliest staff I have dealt with in a long time. I heard this over and over throughout the weekend: “Everyone here is so nice!” The Lynn family is very involved at the ranch and was even participating in the activities. The Tennessee Motorcycle and Music Revival is everything you want in a rally… motorcycles, music and a feeling of family.
Thursday was laid back, with people just starting to arrive, which made it a great day to hang out with friends and check out the grounds. Everything was set up in a manner which made it easy to either walk or ride your bike around. The campground started getting busy on Friday and more so on Saturday. Sunday brought in over 500 additional bikes that rode in from 22 different Harley-Davidson dealers for the Mission 22 Benefit.
As I pulled into the camping area, the first thing I passed was Rhett Rhotten’s Wall of Death. If you have never seen Rhett perform, you are missing out. He is a very talented performer and you can tell he loves the thrill of riding the wall. After the performance, his crew invited the crowd inside the wall and answered any questions they had.
The Loretta Lynn Roadhouse, located in the heart of “Honky Tonk Central,” is where we found the main stage. Music started around 11:00 a.m. each day and went on nonstop. The daily line-up was incredible and each night provided a different headliner. John Anderson kicked things off on Thursday, the Kentucky Headhunters rocked the stage Friday night, with A Thousand Horses on Saturday.
Sunday, the Matt Poss Band performed for the Mission 22 Benefit and then the Lynn family showed off their talents as they took turns warming up the crowd before Loretta Lynn herself took the stage. This was Loretta’s first public appearance since her stroke five months ago, and she made it clear that it was very important to her to be there for “our boys,” referring to those who serve and those who have served. Mission 22 is a non-profit organization formed to help bring awareness to the over 20 veterans a day who commit suicide and to provide support to veterans in need of services to help lower that number.
In total there were over 45 performers who were all outstanding, and believe it or not, they were all from the surrounding area. There were no “fly-in” performers.
Just outside of Loretta’s Roadhouse was Builder’s Row. Here several of the builders from the BC Moto Invitational were set up selling T-shirts and showcasing their specialty products. It was also where you found them hanging out and catching up with each other. Across from Builder’s Row was the vendor area where you could buy just about anything from Lucas Oil Products to boots to vintage clothing and everything in between.
Across from the Roadhouse was where we found the dirt flat track, which was set up by the Mayor of Fun himself, Kevin Bean’re. It was hooligan-style racing at its best. You could have brought out your own bike to run or ridden one of the mini bikes provided by Hawk’s Cycles. This was a hit with old and young alike. Loretta Lynn’s granddaughter Tayla Lynn, who was a huge presence the entire weekend, was even seen on the track! Saturday proved to be an amazing time at the track with organized racing, a slow race and a boot race for the kids. There was even an egg toss, which was an intense competition won by Bill Dodge and his partner.
The Waterin’ Hole bar was located along the banks of the creek in the shadows of a beautiful bluff. The stage here provided music from 2:00–5:00 p.m. with various singer-songwriters and was the place to be every night after things died down at the main stage. There was a huge bonfire and lots of socializing and Mountain Sprout, a bluegrass band out of Arkansas, kept things going into the wee hours of the morning.
Also along the creek, located in the stables, was the BC Moto Invitational, and you couldn’t have asked for a better location for this collection of steel horses. Each had their own stall and you could walk completely around them to fully check them out. Bill Dodge of Bling’s Cycles hand-picked each builder to be showcased. Some built bikes for this show and others brought bikes that were specifically requested by Bill. Just weeks before the Revival, Bill’s Daytona Beach shop was flooded as a result of Hurricane Irma. Bill and his significant other, Denise, would not let that stop them from attending; being with their moto-family was most important to them. I think Bill summed up the weekend perfectly in saying that we are all family in the motorcycle community, and our family grew this weekend to include the musicians and the Lynn family. If you think about it, the builders are artists, they start a build from scratch, and pour their heart into their build until it becomes a machine that flows and is a piece of them. Musicians are the same; they too are artists who piece together a song from an idea that turns into beautiful music which is a piece of them. This weekend there was a bridge from one artist to another, and it was incredible!
Located in the center of Honky Tonk Central was the food court featuring various food trucks, each with their own unique theme. The food was delicious, and reasonably priced. My personal favorite was the tacos with shells made from fried cheese!
Across the main road from Honky Tonk Central was Stagecoach Hill which housed a general store and the Moto Art Gallery featuring artist Robert Nemeth and photographer Bryan Helm. This area is also where the cabins and large RV camping were located.
If you followed the road down through the property, you would find Western Town where the Loretta Lynn Museum and gift shops are located, across the creek from the plantation home. There was also music playing here every afternoon, and they even had pig racing at the Hogway Speedway.
Aside from the organized activities there were lots of shenanigans you could find yourself in the middle of. One afternoon started with a photo shoot of three ’49 Panheads, and ended up with everyone soaking wet in the creek. Of course, there was riding, as the twisty roads around the property and through the countryside provided beautiful scenery. Nashville, around an hour away, was a destination that many took advantage of as well.
Overall the inaugural Tennessee Motorcycle and Music Revival was a huge success and I cannot wait until next year.