I don’t remember how old I was, but I remember the day perfectly—the weather, the smell of the crisp spring air, the feeling of the warm sunshine on my face, the sound the motorcycle made as it went rumbling past me.
It was the day I first laid eyes on a motorcycle sidecar rolling down Main Street in the small town I grew up in.
I didn’t know the model, just that it was a white motorcycle with a black sidecar that had a German Shepherd pup proudly sitting in it.
Ever since that day, I wanted a sidecar.
Fast forward to 1999 where I owned a motorcycle shop and had just become a dealer for Champion Sidecars. I dreamed of adding a sidecar to my 1996 sportster.
Sadly, it never happened. When you run a small motorcycle business, all your personal projects get put on the back burner in order to keep the business alive.
As the years went on, the days of even riding a motorcycle became less and less as we were very busy keeping our customers on the road.
Over the years I was lucky to have several friends with sidecars who would let me take them for a spin, and best yet, be a passenger in the sidecar.
There is something truly unique about riding as a passenger in a sidecar. The perspective alone (especially for a visual person like me) is thrilling, nevermind the excitement as the landscapes whiz by.
Cross Country Trek
This past summer I spent more than 4,700 miles as a passenger in a sidecar—it was the best seven weeks of my life.
We rode from Brooklyn to San Francisco for the Sisters’ Centennial Ride, following the same route that siblings Adeline and Augusta VanBuren traveled 100 years ago on two Indian Motorcycles. More than 65 other women rode with us.
Having ridden motorcycles long distances before, I was prepared to answer the typical questions you get when pulling into a small town on a bike loaded up with gear.
This was different, though. I was in constant awe of the magnetic pull our sidecar had to attract people. Young, old, you name it, they all wanted to take a look and talk about our sidecar rig.
The Veterans Charity Ride
Once we arrived in San Francisco, we rode down to Los Angeles and joined up with the Veterans Charity Ride to Sturgis.
My sidecar pilot, motorcycle executive Robert Pandya, was representing Indian Motorcycle as a proud sponsor of the ride.
We took more than 15 wounded and amputee veterans on a therapeutic ride to Sturgis, South Dakota. The outpouring of support from every small town along the way was overwhelming, filling our hearts with American Pride.
Robert and I knew there was something very special about a sidecar and its unique way of bringing people together.
We decided we wanted to keep the celebration going, so we developed an event called the Sidecar Soiree: a fun weekend to bring together other side ”hacktivists” to ride, share stories, and enjoy each other’s company.
Our inaugural event will take place from March 31 to April 2, 2017, in Fredericksburg, Texas—the gateway to the iconic Texas Hill Country.
All models and brands of motorcycles and sidecars are welcome, especially if you like cruisin’ backroads with friends!
Like to learn more about these unique add-ons? Try the Everything You Didn’t Know About Motorcycle Sidecars Quiz.