by Clint Burgess

Now is a good time to shake off the winter doldrums, get out of the house and go look at motorcycles. Coincidentally, the Inland Northwest Motorcycle Show, sponsored by Toyota Trucks, is this weekend, Feb. 18-20, at the Spokane Convention Center. If the runaway success of last year's show is any indication, this event will be a hit.

The show is the baby of local promoter Steve Cody. He has been the organizer for the annual RV show in town and caught the two-wheel fever last year. "My son got a motorcycle and he kind of gave me the idea to do a show," Cody says. Until last year, there weren't any events of this magnitude for local motorcycle enthusiasts. Sure, you could always ride out to Sturgis or take the Pacific Coast Highway down to California -- but this is local. As it turns out, there was need for a show like this in our area, because bike fans turned out in droves. "There was a line that stretched from the Convention Center doors to the east end of the Doubletree parking lot," Cody recalls.

A few of the new additions to this year's show are sure to get the gear-heads whipped into a frenzy. For starters, the show will now occupy the Convention Center as well as the AG Trade Center. This will alleviate any overcrowding issues that may have been raised last year by the 9,000 attendees of the show. There will be vendors from all over the country as well as some entertainment. "The advantage of a show like this is that you can come down and see exactly what you want," says Cody. "It's all very hands-on and customer-oriented." In other words, this is a place for bikers to buy stuff. Not only can you see and touch the goods, you have access to knowledgeable vendors who can answer questions on the spot and put your mind at ease.

Promoting motorcycles in the Northwest can sometimes be difficult. There is an abundance of rugged natural beauty here that is conducive to being out on a bike and taking it all in. But then factor in winter, a wet spring and a blustery fall, and that doesn't leave a lot of time for bikes. Yet this doesn't deter Cody or the masses of motorcycle enthusiasts in the area. "This show really kicks off the riding season for us," he says. "I like to drive convertibles in the summer, but the view is just so much better from a motorcycle."

There are plenty of like-minded bikers in this area who share Cody's sentiment. "I've been in contact with 30 motorcycle clubs in our area that will all be represented at the show," he says. And Cody is quick to point out that you never can tell who is a biker: "When you see these guys out in their leathers, you don't know if they're an accountant or a dentist. It's just a lifestyle in itself."

The Inland Northwest Motorcycle Show and Sale will be held on Friday, Feb. 18, from 4-9 pm, on Saturday, Feb. 19, from 10 am-9 pm, and on Saturday, Feb. 20, from 10 am-4 pm. Tickets: $8; $3, children (ages 6-12); free, children (age 5 and younger). Spokane Convention and AG Trade Center, 332 W. Spokane Falls Blvd. Visit or call 466-4256.

Publication date: 2/17/05

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