Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Why we attended Bike Night in Moorhead instead of an art walk in Fargo June 22, 2012

Randy with his 1977 Harley Davidson Sportster in the summer on 1981.

I’M NO BIKER CHICK or Motorcycle Mama.

But my husband, well, once a Harley guy, always a Harley guy. Randy hasn’t owned a bike, though, for 15 years. On a mid-June morning in 1997, a teen driver plowed his car into my spouse’s 1977 Sportster on a Northfield city street. Randy landed on his tailbone in the roadway and was transported by ambulance to the hospital. He experienced severe bruising, soreness and back pain for quite awhile, but suffered no other apparent injuries.

The insurance company totaled the Sportster.

Ever since then, Randy has longed for a replacement Harley. But finances and my worries have kept him bike-less. The 1997 accident marked his second bike incident. Previously Randy laid his Harley down on a Faribault highway to avoid a collision.

The June 14 Bike Night in the east parking lot of the Moorhead Center Mall.

Occasionally he’ll say, “I should get a bike.” Randy expressed that wish again recently when we attended Bike Night at the Moorhead Center Mall.

Bike Night wasn’t my choice of events to attend when we were in the Fargo-Moorhead area last week. I would have much rather strolled through downtown Fargo shops sipping wine and watching artists during the Corks & Canvas Art and Wine Walk than meander between motorcycles in a mall parking lot.

But, because marriage is about compromise and sometimes doing what the spouse wants, there we were, looking at bikes. I’ll admit to not being in the best of moods. I was hot, thirsty, tired, hungry and crabby upon our arrival.

Eventually, though, I figured out that I may as well make the best of it.

One of my favorite bikes at Bike Night because of the license plate, flags and message, “Riding for the son.”

One of the oldest of the estimated 350 bikes at Bike Night.

Biking through the Moorhead Center Mall east parking lot during the June 14 Bike Night.

So…if motorcycles are your thing and you’re in the Moorhead area, you have two more opportunities to attend Bike Night from 5:30 p.m. – 9 p.m. on July 12 and August 9. Non-bikers are supposed to park near Herberger’s, which we did not because we had a tough time even finding the Bike Night location. It’s in the east parking lot.

You’ll see plenty of bikes—an estimated 350 on the June evening we were there—and plenty of interesting characters. There’s food and beer, too, although we did not sample either.

If you’d rather sample wine and experience the art scene, do the Corks & Canvas Art and Wine Walk across the river in Fargo from 5 p.m. – 9 p.m. on July 12, August 9 and/or September 13.

Perhaps if I’d mentioned that Turtle Shell Stained Glass Gallery was on the art walk, my husband may have opted for the arts event. He’s taken a class in stained glass and created several pieces. But, naw, I don’t think it would have mattered. Bikes trump art anytime for him.

© Copyright 2012 Audrey Kletscher Helbling