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Laconia, New Hampshire, Bike Week
By Byron Mackelroy

Born from the "Loudon Classic", a motorcycle race that started in 1923, Laconia
Motorcycle Week is one of the largest motorcycle rallies in the United States with
attendance of up to 400,000 visitors in some years.

Every year the nine days leading up to Father's Day brings in a groundswell of
bikers and bikes of all different varieties. From souped-up super customs to
rip-roaring race bikes, Bike Week is sure to tickle the fancy of any motorcycle
enthusiast.

Here are the top 5 things to ensure you have the time of your life during the
festivities.

The Loudon Races and the Gunstock Hill Climbs

Laconia Motorcycle Week started as a rally to watch the local bike races. The
Loudon Classic Race, the original event, is the longest continually running
motorcycle race in America. If you enjoy racing, make it a point to visit the New
Hampshire International Speedway in Loudon. For those of you looking for
something a bit more unorthodox, the Gunstock Hill Climbs are the event for you.
Watch from the base of the local ski resort as daredevils on supercharged hill
climb bikes race up the slopes for the best time. This event always has a few close
calls that will leave you with a few stories to tell your friends when you get back
home.

Cruising the Lake

There is no other way to say it, Lake Winnipesaukee is one of the most scenic lakes
in the world. Covering almost 69 square miles, Lake Winnipesaukee's stretch of
pristine water harbors hundreds of islands and numerous towns and villages.
During your Bike Week Adventure, either by car or Harley, make it a point to
cruise the circuit running the perimeter of the lake. Your trip will take you through
quaint harbor towns like Meredith and Wolfeboro. Each village and town has its
own character as well as numerous restaurants and stores to visit. The scenic
stretches of road running higher up the mountainside will open up panoramic
views of dark blue lakes and rolling green mountain spanning out as far as the eye
can see.

The Weirs

Everyone knows that the Weirs Beach area in Laconia is the heart and soul of Bike
Week. This boardwalk and beach area offers host to many of the vendors and
drinking establishments that make Bike Week such a crazy event. While it may not
be "kid friendly", the Weirs offers some of the best people watching in the world
during the rally. Throw on your leathers, show off your tattoos and add some extra
time to find a parking spot, a visit to the Weirs is like stepping into one of the Mad
Max movies.

The Train

For those of you who want to take in the festivities, tip back a few drinks and
avoid the parking problems, be sure to check out the Winnipesaukee Scenic
Railroad. This vintage railroad offers transportation directly to the train station on
the Weirs Boardwalk from the more Quiet towns of Meredith and Lakeport. With
tickets pricing in at only $12.50 for a round trip, this ride is well worth the
investment.

Lodging

With all the opportunities for a good time during Laconia Motorcycle Week one
thing is for certain, at the end of the day you are going to be exhausted. Planning
for this fact ahead of time can make the difference between a good trip and a great
trip. For those attendees looking to be in the thick of the action, make sure to get
your reservations early and look for a
New Hampshire hotel near the Weirs that
fits your needs.

The Summit Resort, just walking distance from Weirs Beach, offers fantastic
amenities from indoor pools and roman spas to saunas and a weight room. If you
are looking for a bit more peace and quiet after a long day, check out Steele Hill
Resorts right outside of Laconia. Steele Hill Resorts, the largest resort in central
New Hampshire, offer close proximity to the rally with killer views and a list of
amenities that will make your head spin.

Bike Week is a unique New Hampshire tradition. The Lakes Region is proud to
host such a colorful event. If you are a hardcore bike, someone looking to
experience something new or just a fan of the races, make it a point to plan out
your trip and get ready for a goodtime.

Don't forget your bandana.
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