If you’re a fan of all things two-wheeled, you’ll know that nothing beats the buzz of the open road. But that doesn’t mean the fun has to stop when the ride does. Motorcycle meets, swaps, rallies, festivals, and shows are a great place to shoot the breeze with some like-minded enthusiasts, pick up tips, and admire some of the biggest and best bikes around. If you live in New York, you’ll find no shortage of events on your doorstep. Regardless of whether you prefer vintage classics or modern masterpieces, you’ll find plenty to love about these five best motorcycle shows in New York.
1. International Motorcycle Show New York City
The International Motorcycle Show is an international motorcycle exhibition that takes place across multiple different states each year. In 2021, the show comes to the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York. Described by TradeFairDates as ‘ the perfect stage for the presentation of hundreds of the latest models of information about new developments in the industry,’ the show is a must-visit for any dedicated motorcycle enthusiast. The three-day event kicks off on the 3rd of September before winding to a close on the 5th. With exhibits featuring every known variant of bikes (including Street, Cruiser, Off-Road, Racing & Performance, Women Riders, Touring, and Vintage), along with stunt shows and demos, it’s a great place to check out the goods and learn a little more about the history and capabilities of the models. Get professional tips on servicing your bike, speak to some of the leaders in the industry, check out the latest models before anyone else does, mingle with like-minded two-wheel fanatics, invest in some swanky new gear, and generally have three days of flat-out fun – what’s not to like?
2. Annual Antique Motorcycle Show
2021 marks the 40th Annual Antique Motorcycle Show. If you’ve not had a chance to visit in previous years, this is the year to clear a space in your schedule. While you’re at it, clear a space in the rest of your family’s schedule, too: while some motorcycle events aren’t for under-18s, the Annual Antique Motorcycle Show’s family-friendly vibes make it a great place to introduce your kids to your passion for all things fast and furious. Although in the interests of transparency, it should probably be pointed out that not everything at the Annual Antique Motorcycle Show is fast. Nor is everything furious. The show is a celebration of all things vintage. Sure, most of the bikes on display would have been considered speed monsters back in the day, but by today’s standards, they’re a little sluggish. But that’s not to say they aren’t beautiful. If you go weak at the knees over pre-war bikes, you’re going to love the vast collection of vintage motorcycles on show. If you prefer the mid to late 20th-century era, there’s also a good selection of post-war models to lust over. If you’ve got a vintage bike of your own, bring it along to compete for a trophy in one of the various categories. Along with the bikes, there’s lots of fun to be had, with live music, kids activities, and a vast array of food and drink stalls.
3. Catskill Mountain Thunder Motorcycle Festival
Why limit yourself to a one-day event when you could stretch the fun over an entire weekend? The Catskill Mountain Thunder Motorcycle Festival is a fun-packed weekend that’s a must-visit for any true motorcycle enthusiast. The fun kicks off with a Wednesday night pub crawl followed by a pre-festival kick-off party with free food, drink, and music on Thursday. On Friday, the serious stuff starts. As per Cycle Fish, the festival features a smorgasbord of activities to get involved in, including aerial burnout, spaghetti wrestling, a bike show with cash prizes, vendor expos, a bike build-off, a motorcycle museum, free demo rides, live music, rodeo games, and escorted rides in the Catskill Mountains. In the evenings, there’s a pig roast, a fireworks display, and even a burlesque show. Basically, it’s a blast. If you can’t get enough of motorcycles, don’t miss it.
4. Americade Touring Motorcycle Rally
2021 celebrates the 38th Annual Americade Touring Motorcycle Rally, a fun-packed week that’s guaranteed to be the highlight of any motorcycle enthusiast’s year. As per borntoride.com, the world’s largest multi-brand motorcycle touring rally consists of a week-long festival of motorcycling, which includes guided tours in the scenic Adirondack Park and the Green Mountains of VT. Along with the tours, the festival also features a huge trade show with over 200 vendors, demos, and displays from some of the world’s leading motorcycle manufacturers. There are also some first-class stunt shows to watch (or even participate in, if you’re feeling adventurous). If all that wasn’t enough, there’s also catered dinner boat cruises, comedy shows, and a whole lot more besides. Usually, the festivities kick off in June. As there’s still some doubt about whether an event of this size will be permitted by then in light of the current COVID situation, the organizers have decided to play it safe and move it to the week of September 21-25 instead.
5. Buffalo Motorama Show
Whether you prefer two wheels or four, there’s a lot to love about the Buffalo Motorama Show. This year, the festivities kick off on 1st April before drawing to a close on the third. As usual, it’ll be held at the newly remodeled Buffalo Convention Center. As one of the largest indoor motor shows in New York, there’s plenty of things to keep you entertained. The display of bikes and cars is immense, covering everything from original to modified, classics to customs, race to hot rods, pro street to unrestored. On top of that, there are vendors to get the inside scoop from, live music to enjoy, and demos from some of the area’s top pinstripers. Unlike some motorcycle events that are a ‘guys-only’ kind of thing, the Buffalo Motorama Show is a family affair. The “Women’s Oasis” features dozens of vendors offering products and services, along with costumed movie characters to keep kids entertained. If you’re looking to indulge your passion for bikes without alienating the whole family in the process, it’s a must-visit. As with most events planned for this year, the show will run COVID restrictions permitting.