Thursday, July 10, 2008

Here Come the Del Fuegos!

Mothers! Hide your children, especially the girl children! There are as many as 20,000 bikers expected for this weekend's festivities. That will more than triple the population of Gettysburg!

As we were enjoying a rare sleep-in this morning we were jolted awake by the arrival of a gaggle of motorcycles going by on their way to town for Bike Week. [How many bikes weeks do we have around here? We just had one a few weeks ago!]

Anyone who watched the hilarious satire on biking, Wild Hogs, knows what to expect. Imagine 20,000 members of the Del Fuego gang arriving at Gettysburg much as the cinematic gang did at Madrid, New Mexico.

Last year there were fights. More than were reported. And there were arrests, fewer than there should have been.

So, clogged streets, clogged stores, and no chance to get into Gettysburg's biker bar, the Pike.

So here is something else the great philanthropist David Levan has done for Gettysburg: an invasion of bikes and bikers at the height of tourist season. We wonder how many regular tourists could not come here to Gettysburg because the rooms are filled with bikers. Who'd want to say in a hotel full of bikers except more bikers? Great for the bikers, great for the hotels and restaurants, bad for everybody else!

On a recent journey back from Antietam Battlefield we came north on Maryland 491 to get to Blue Ridge Summit on PA 16. It is a beautiful ride on good road up the west slope of South Mountain. Just below the PA line is a biker bar. As we went past it, we were forced to dodge an elderly biker who appeared to be fleeing. Past the bar, we looked back and there was a large crowd watching two men, one with his hands on the other one's throat, while the other was reaching for a large rock on the ground. We can only imagine what the mentality of the crowd was like as they watched, with no one making a move to intervene. We can only guess at the outcome of the fight, and hope that no one was seriously hurt. It was an ugly scene, more ugly than anything in Wild Hogs, which had its moments.

We do not dislike motorcycles, nor do we dislike motorcyclists. We dislike bike week as intrusive, and out of character for Gettysburg, noisy, dangerous, and with a potential for big trouble. We dislike bikers who drive the noisy, illegal bikes that break noise ordinances wherever they go. It is nothing for one or two hundred bikers to rumble by Susan Star Paddock's home several times a day on many weekends out of the year. Susan led the successful effort to derail Levan, owner of the local Harley Davidson dealership, in his efforts to impose a casino on the Gettysburg area. So the bikers simply will not let it go. We suppose bringing this up will generate the usual thuggery on BoroughVENT, too.

Nevertheless, the local civic and business leaders here in Gettysburg and surrounds are lost at sea, spinning their wheels to squeeze more and more money from the tourists at the expense of the locals and those same tourists.

On another note: we see the ignoramuses on the Gettysburg Area School District Board are still proceeding with their phony "mandate" to build their $8 million stadium. If for no other reason than the economy, such plans should be shelved and any tax increases should be rolled back. It is incomprehensible that any public entity would do what GASD is doing when gas prices have doubled, and the economy has taken a significant downturn. For these clowns to raise taxes and take away property tax rebates in a time of financial crisis for property owners is simply insulting and demeaning - not to say wholly unnecessary.

We need recall options for all our elected officials.

Finally, word late today that indictments have been handed down by Attorney General Tom Corbett for former House Minority leader Mike Veon [D-Beaver] and other Democratic leaders in the General Assembly for using tax payer money to pay their campaign staff hefty [six figure!] bonuses. Perhaps they'll finally nail Bill Deweese, before they move on to the Republicans. Watch for John Perzel of Philadelphia, and Sam Smith [R-Jefferson], as well as Mario Civera {R-Delaware], to be among the Republicans probably getting indictments for the same things in the coming weeks. Both parties did it, though the Democrats apparently did so to wretched excess.

Imagine those men, all part of the force that brought casino gambling to Pennsylvania by secret vote, and then an illegal pay raise [Veon cast the only no vote when the pay raise was repealed!!!!], sharing a prison cell, and becoming some con's wife. It will never happen. Our wonderful, State Judges will find a way out for all of them. Watch, even if convicted, when sentencing time arrives, no jail time. The judges owe these men big-time. They got to keep their part of the pay raise. Their own court said so!


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Anonymous said...

I'm totally shocked at what the local authorities will allow because of their inability to stand up and say no- just shows you what a few bucks can buy. It came to me that 145 years ago Gettysburg did not have a say in what happened in their town - but today they do. I sure would be willing to get involved in a petition to halt the two weekend biker activity to just one weekend. After all, we can't take away all their fun.

Resident on Chambersburg Pike

Anonymous said...

Folks, how easily you forget about the Constitution. China is always an option, I hear that gas is cheaper over there too!

VNVets said...

Well, since you seem to think so highly of China, why don't you make everyone happy and take bike week there? See what its like in Beijing.

Having Bike week at this time of the year is an insult, and actually hurts the local economy.

While we are on the subject of constitutional rights, it seems you forget those of the locals, who have the right to be safe in their own homes, and not disturbed as so many are by the noise and congestion of bike week.

Finally, check the attitude of the bikers themselves, who do much of the noisemaking deliberately. See BoroughVent for proof. Last night you could hear bikers trespassing on the Battlefield well after midnight, two hours after the park closes. That is simply anunconcionable disregard for the law.

Take your bike week somewhere else where it might be more appreciated. It is become hated here by the locals. And you wouldn't want to disturb the locals would you?

Anonymous said...

I'm a local and I don't hate it. Not thrilled with the noise (I live by Rte 30 west of square), but, Jesus folks, it is simply noise. It ain't gonna hurt you. Grow up and accept that you can't dictate your beleifs or ideas of what Gettysburg should be onto others.

GettysBLOG said...

I'm local and I hate it. It's not just noise. It is the imposition it places on folks to accomodate 20,000+ bikers at a time of year families try to bring their kids here. Tourists hide out when the bikers are in town. That's if they were lucky enough to find rooms.

Don't try to bring up reenactment weekend. First, it has so much more to do with the area than bikers, second, the reenactors don't soak up all the available hotel space, they camp on the grounds of the reenactment, third most of the tourst in for that weekend are here to specifically attend that event, which is also out of town.

Finally, the disregard for the law is what I find most repulsive in the bikers. From illegal pipes to trespassing on the Battlefield after hours to racing and revving up and down the streets and back roads of the county.

Take it somewhere else, or don't have it at all.

By now, it should be obvious to everyone that David Levan has no care whatsoever for Gettysburg, the tourist trade, the Battlefield, or the local population. All he cares about is money to fund his lifestyle. Frankly, I consider him the south end of a northbound horse.

Anonymous said...

I think you should take the line "We do not dislike motorcycles, nor do we dislike motorcyclists." out of your blog. It's so clearly a lie. You're a bitter angry guy with a hard on for the LeVans

GettysBLOG said...

I think you have a problem with reading comprehension. I dislike bikers in large groups. I do not dislike motorcycles, nor do I dislike motorcyclists. Indeed, I am considering the purchase of one now.

So, no, you are dead wrong. I do not lie.

You are right on one thing, however, and that is that I am angry with David Levan. I think he is the worst thing to ever happen to Gettysburg. I see him as a very selfish person.

Bitter? No. Angry, yes.

Now you can return to BoroughVent and tell them how you "stood up to me". That will make the bigots, bullies, and misanthropes on there happy.

Anonymous said...

so the bikers that bring thier money to this town that pay for hotel rooms and food with money the american kind the same kind that tourist use hurt the economy? really though, have you been to the bike week website let alone visited bike week they use alot of the profit they (no not jen and dave levan, the people who actually plan and execute bike week (john summers, larry racey, pam hench etc)make to support charities like survivors, the red cross, the red knights, the 12 steppers, chrisitan motorcyclist association etc.. has this been overlooked? Why do you not think of bikers as educated people? i apologise if you've had to experience the bad apples of the crowd but last time i checked the people who plan bike week are business executives(UTZ, H&S supply etc.) to hospital presidents, to the district attorney, to governmenet employees for the department of defense to the office of urban housing and development and i say this because i know them all personally because unlike you i've taken the time to get to know them and what they stand for. i mean is it a bad thing to plan an event that brings money into the community? i also know that some of the money they donated last year paid in full for the cumberland township drug dog's training in fact the dog was there at bike week with the police showing off his awesome new skills.

i really just dont get it sit or ma'am or whoever you are seriously if you have questions email me my name is elizabeth hench

GettysBLOG said...

I appreciate the time and effort you are putting in to this discussion, but I have to tell you, ou are making stuff up about my position. I never said anything about bikers being uneducated. Just like I did not lie about liking motorcycles and motor cyclists.

You absolutely must be careful of what you say. Your accusations and misreading are wholly improper.

Now, I understand the philanthropy of bike week. Of course its good. Hitler made the trains run on time. That was good, too.

Bike week has no business occurring at this time of year, which was one of my points you obviously missed in the blog, and secondly, I resent Levan turning Gettysburg into his own personal biker town.

If you want to know the truth about Bike Week, take a wild stab at who you think benefits the most from it. Do the initials D & J L
come to mind?

As far as the police dog, well, now we know why CT Police were not ticketing illegal, and speeding bikes in the Township. The bikes were there all weekend, the police were nowhere to be found.

I am going to cut off discussion on this as it has run its course, and you seem convinced that I am saying things that I am not. I won't engage in that kind of discussion.

Thank you for writing.

Anonymous said...

You have pools. Why not do one on Bike Week?

GettysBLOG said...

Boy, some people are just not very observant.

Anonymous said...

I don't see any poll. Now you are comparing them to Hitler? I think you need to tone down the rhetoric a little. As a previous poster pointed out why all the vitriol for the LeVans with no mention of the actual people who plan and host Bike Week. It's called objectivity, you should try it some time. You're always going to be a running joke as long as you continue to let your personal feelings skew the facts.

GettysBLOG said...

You don't see any poll because you and your buddies from BoroughVent stuffed the ballot box.

The Levans earn every bit of the vitriol they get, and you are a fine one to talk coming here from BoroughVent. You get objectivity here. You get bombast, thuggery obscenity, and bullying on BoroughVenal.

Post your comments there in the future.

This is NOT a discussion forum.