I’ve made a goal of attending all of the motorcycle shows in Florida. And to that end, some motorcycle enthusiast friends and I have been to the Daytona (twice), Arcadia and St. Pete motorcycle shows.
The two shows that I’ve really been wanting to see are Leesburg and GibTown. So today a bunch of us rode up to Gibsonton —between Gibsonton and Riverview, just south of Tampa, Florida— and took a look at what they had.
The event is hosted by the International Independent Showmen's Association, known to most as the "Gibtown Showmen's Club.” They’re one of the largest organizations in the carnival industry and opened this facility in 1966.
This was a 3-day event opening on Friday. We had intended on going Sunday but the weather folks are saying we’re supposed to get some hurricane-style weather tomorrow so everybody rearranged their schedules and decided to go today.
The place was packed with bikes of every make, model and style and, of course, lots of fellow motorbike fans. I think last year they had 9,000 people a day in attendance and I’m guessing there were probably 10 to 12k people there today.
There were two stages with bands playing southern rock and some of the Carnies were putting on freak shows …they had snakes and all sorts of stuff like that. There was a hypnotist there, too.
But one of the biggest parts of the show—and something I really wanted to see, and unfortunately I missed it this year— was the CAGE OF DEATH! Oh, how I wanted to see that. They had a stunt spectacular that didn’t start until later and unfortunately I had something planned for later in the afternoon so I left a little early.
But anyway, we had a great time; we ate some fair-food, bought a bunch of knickknacks, leather goods, patches, pins, shirts and stickers and everybody left happy.
Now, on to Leesburg!