December is upon us and with that, I’m sure everyone has already started their Christmas wish lists. Part of mine has already been answered when the government decided to go back to work and, in the process, reopen the National Parks. Why am I so happy about that? My ol’ man is taking off for Big Bend National Park in a few days for two weeks of R&R (Riding & Recharging). If the Park was still closed, he might decide to hang around the house instead—and completely screw up my plans. Now if my elected officials could only fix all the other stuff wrong with the country… It was a busy weekend on September 20–22 with events being held across the state. Up north the Boozefighters MC Chapter 64 held their annual Pig Party at Old Bowie Lake in Stoneburg. It was an “adult” party with live music, plenty of food, biker games and primitive camping… At the same time, not too far distant, another porcine-themed event was being held in Wills Point, the 18th annual Pig Sty Pasture Party. Presented by Pig Sty Vintage MC Shop, this old-fashioned bike rally included games, a bike show, wet T-shirt contest, four bands and shaded camping all for the old-fashioned price of $15… And then out west, Biker Rallies of Texas held their Rumble on the River at Mansfield Park in Bandera. Calling itself the “Cowboy Capital of the World,” Bandera offers a great backdrop to this rally that featured two concerts, an AMA-sanctioned ride to Texas’s noted Twisted Sisters, a poker run, bike show, tattoo contest, games and the event’s semi-famous Naughty Nightie Contest. Yep, 21 and older only, once again… The 21st annual Johnson City Pig Roast had the pits a-blazing at the town’s Blanco County Fairgrounds on October 11–13. Sponsored by the Hill Country Toy Run Association, this is always a great time and is well attended by bikers from across the state. As always there was a poker run, bike show and motorcycle field events. The $25 gate fee included live music, a delicious pig dinner Saturday night, free tent camping and Sunday morning services by the Tribe of Judah MM. Monies collected go to support the needs of the Cherokee Home for Children… During the same weekend on October 12–13, long-standing friend and racer-renown Red Roberts held the Texas Harley Racers Reunion Gathering & Drags at the Little River Dragway in Holland. This event takes the place of Red’s Labor Day All Harley Party Drags that had been held for 30 years but, due to the excessive heat during that time, has been dropped from the schedule. This replacement continues to offer top fuel, alcohol and vintage H-D dragsters and more than 30 Sportsman Trophy Classes. And of course, one hell of a party Saturday night… Also on the 13th, the 10th annual Alvin Blue Santa Motorcycle Ride and Bike Show were held at National Oak Park in Alvin. The police-escorted ride covered 65 miles while the bike show included eight divisions with winners being chosen by people’s choice. The day also included food, vendors, music and two auctions. All proceeds raised go to benefit Alvin-area kids… For those not able to make Biketoberfest in Daytona this year, you always have the Biketober Fest in Eagle Pass sponsored by the Eagle Riders MC. Held at the Maverick County Fairgrounds on October 18–20, it was this event’s 7th anniversary and they once again had an abundance of music, food, vendors and door prizes along with a poker run and bike games. The Eagle Riders MC is a nonprofit organization and can be reached at www.eagle-riders-mc.com for additional details concerning their outreach… October 19 the Space City Cruisers and the Texas Lions Club joined forces and presented the Space City Cruisers Motorcycle Show at Walter Hall Park in League City. The Show offered 18 different bike classifications with trophies for first and second place being awarded in each category. Also on tap were door prizes, raffles, music and food with all proceeds going to the Vicki Gibson youth scholarships and the Texas Lions youth camp… And right before Halloween, Independence Harley-Davidson in College Station presented their Hard Candy Party with a Treasure Chest Free Kid Zone, a cakewalk, games and prizes and a Create a Pumpkin Candy Buffet. Talk about a sugar rush… I wish to end with condolences for the Reyna family from the Rio Grande Valley. Hector Reyna was killed in a motorcycle accident October 9. THUNDER PRESS is associated with Hector’s younger brother, G.J., who is one of the promoters for the Corpus Christi BikeFest (formerly South Padre Island BikeFest). Although the accident occurred just two days before this year’s rally was to begin its first outing in a new locale, after a brief visit with family, G.J. returned to Corpus to help chart the rally’s course through new waters. Hang tough, amigo, you have our prayers and support… The year is winding to an end, but there are still plenty of riding days left on the calendar. And when it’s too nasty for riding, you can always wrench or clean. And dream… about all those great destinations left to visit. Makes you get plum excited about 2014.