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CARLISLE, Pa. – Thunder roared into Carlisle as the fourth annual Carlisle Summer Bike Fest brought 35,465 visitors to the Carlisle (Pa.) Fairgrounds on July 22-24. One-of-a-kind sport bikes, custom bikes, classics, choppers, touring bikes and more could be seen on a show field overflowing with thousands of motorcycles. More than 600 vendors sold all the parts, accessories and apparel motorcyclists could need. Also, four local Harley-Davidson dealers set up a 19,000-square-foot Harley-Davidson dealer mall.

Brad Whitford, guitarist in the band Aerosmith, visited the show with the Aerosmith-themed bike, built by master customizer Dave Perewitz. The Custom Builder Roundtable featured a panel of the motorcycle industry’s best-known and most talented professionals, including Perewitz, Donnie Smith, Ron Simms, Roger Bourget, Eddie Trotta and photojournalist Michael Lichter. Michele Smith, star of Speed TV’s “American Thunder,” hosted the roundtable with Brad Whitford.

Jason Sheets of Black Canyon Cycle, Hagerstown, Md., won the Mid-Atlantic Custom Builder Challenge with his modified retro 1981 Shovelhead on a Panhead straight-leg rigid frame to receive a cash prize and a feature article in V-Twin magazine, the sponsor of the contest. The 2004 Yamaha YZF-R1 owned by Jerry McCoy of McCoy Motorsports, Pikeville, Ky., won the 2Wheel Tuner Custom Sport Bike competition, earning the prize and an a feature in 2Wheel Tuner magazine.

On Saturday evening, Leo Beers of Marysville won the 2005 Ninja ZX-6R provided by Koup’s Cycle Shop and Cumberland Kawasaki in partnership with Carlisle Events. He attended with the Christian Motorcycle Association of Harrisburg, and he plans to sell the bike and give the proceeds to the association.

Don Bick of Finleyville won the 2005 Harley-Davidson FXST Softail Standard on Sunday. He came to the show with TNT & Infamous Cycles. Carlisle Events teamed with Appalachian Harley-Davidson, Laugerman’s Harley-Davidson, Susquehanna Valley Harley-Davidson/Buell and White’s Harley-Davidson/Buell to provide this giveaway.

The Carlisle Thunder Motorcycle Auction saw 138 bikes cross the block. “I thought the auction went really well,” said Scott Adcock, co-owner of Carlisle Thunder. “We really had a good group of bikes, as good a caliber of bike as I think you’ll find anywhere at any event across the country.” Carlisle Thunder plans to return next year, “bigger than ever,” Adcock said. See www.carlisle-thunder.com for more information.

The Art of Horsepower roundtable featured respected motorcycle professionals Jeff Clark of The Cycle Exchange (TCX), Joe Chowansky of TP Engineering, Dorian Swanner of Carolina Custom Products, Scott Hodgson of Progressive Suspensions, John Gabriel of Edelbrock, Mark Thompson of HHI and Danny Fitzmaurice of Zipper’s Performance.

Many other special guests and exciting activities highlight the weekend. Chef Biker Billy entertained audiences and burned taste buds as he cooked with fire. The StarBoyz street bike stunt team performed to wild crowds all weekend doing no-handed wheelies, stoppies, burnouts and other crazy tricks.

Numerous competitions were held over the weekend, with many prizes awarded. Mauro Kisak of Monroeville won Best of Show in the Bike & Rider Judged Show with his 2003 Springer Softail built by Dave Wagner/G-Spot Engineering. Adrienne Boger won the burnout contest, sponsored by Koup’s Cycle Shop. Heather Borkaski of Lavale, Md., most impressed the judges and won the title of Ms. Carlisle Summer Bike Fest 2005 in the beauty contest sponsored by Easy Life Hot Tubs.

On the Teresi Dyno Drags, guests could “race” other bikes and find out their motorcycle’s horsepower. Or they see how much power their bike puts out with American Cycle Performance dyno tester. In the trials competition, dirt bike riders balanced and jumped from different objects without touching the ground.

Carlisle offers a fun family environment. Children’s activities included free youth demo rides from Velocity Cycles, a visit from a clown, free henna tattoos and caricatures.

Mark your calendar for next year’s Carlisle Summer Bike Fest, July 21-23, 2006. Also, don’t miss the York Open House motorcycle event Sept. 22-24 at the York (Pa.) Fairgrounds & Expo Center.

Visit bikesatcarlisle.com or call (717) 243-7855 for more information. Call 1(877) 727-8573 for hotel information. Carlisle Events welcomes PPG Refinish Inc., an official sponsor of Carlisle Summer Bike Fest; Advance Auto Parts, official auto parts store of Carlisle Events; and Meguiar’s, sponsor of all Carlisle events.