ROT 2011

 We Survived ROT 2011.


Bill and I were warned to leave downtown Austin before 40,000+ bikers converged on the Austin area for this past weekend’s Republic Of Texas (ROT) Biker Rally. But due to “scheduling difficulties” we decided to ride it out [pun intended].

The actual rally was held at the Travis County Expo Center. The Doobie Brothers and Eddie Money were headliners. According to ROT’s official blog: “Rally goers were treated to live music, custom bikes, stunt shows and tattoos.”  

Bill and I ventured out to watch the ROT parade on Friday evening. We waited patiently along Congress Avenue for the bikers to make the five-mile trip from the Expo Center. Texas Rollergirls skated around, trying to drum up business for their Saturday bout. Finally the parade arrived downtown around 8 PM.

After passing the Capitol, the bikers paraded south on Congress Avenue, u-turned near Second Street, and headed back north to park down the center of Congress Avenue. Except for the noise, exhaust fumes, occasional flames and quite a few scary-looking people, the parade was fun to watch. 

The parade lasted about an hour. The ROT organizers hoped to set a Guiness World Record for the “World’s Longest Motorcycle Parade.” I don’t know if the record was set, but it was certainly the longestand loudestmotorcycle parade in my record book.

Eventually most of Congress Avenue turned into a motorcycle parking lot. Bikers headed off to party on Sixth Street. The rest of us strolled among the bikes. 

All in all, ROT weekend in downtown Austin wasn’t as bad as we expected. Bill and I spent many hours at the Paramount Theater watching Charlie Chaplin films. We saw Matt and Kim at Stubb’s. We avoided melees on Sixth Street. And we didn’t drive our cars much …which was probably safer than being on the roads filled with motorcycles!

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