Rock fans and motorcycle enthusiasts united Saturday at the sophomore Vette City Motorcycle Music Fest for guitar shredding, bike revving and unique memories at Edge Hill Farm in Oakland.
Saturday’s activities began at Harley-Davidson Bowling Green with a Bikers Against Child Abuse ride, before the festival gates officially opened at 10 a.m. with biker games, a poker run and a custom bike show – where Harley-Davidson aficionados could meander through a display of paint jobs ranging from hot pink and glittering red to clown-adorned lime green.
Overlooking the main stage, vendors attracted the crowds during the blistering afternoon heat with biking necessities – leather vests, tires and paint specialists – and grub like kettle corn, tacos and “old fashioned” soda pop from wooden barrels.
The lush trees lining the festival campus lended a little peace and a lot of privacy, far from any urban noise regulations.
Southern boogie rockers Jackyl headlined following performances from Head East, Small Town Titans and Great White. Midafternoon, Jasmine Cain was able to inspire a small crowd of fans to jump and flip their locks with fast fingerwork to tunes like Rage Against the Machine’s “Killing in the Name.”
Attendees stuck with motorcycle fashions – fishnets, muscle tanks, blue jean button downs and leather pants – despite the 90-degree heat.
The crowd was mostly 50-plus, though there were some younglings skipping through the fields or burning calories in the bouncy houses. In fact, it seems like the bouncy houses were one of the most popular attractions Saturday afternoon.
Elvis Poe from Madisonville brought his 16-year-old son to the festival to introduce him to the experience of live rock.
Poe has been enjoying the scene, but thought it was less wild than the normal events he attends with other motorcycle-loving folks.
“This is a little different than a biker rally,” said Poe, who drives a Harley-Davidson Street Glide. “Bike rallies are a big drunken party.”
“It’s the same crowd (here), just tamer.”
Rodney Hoffman of Bowling Green returned for his second, more populous Vette City. While in a familiar crowd, he expressed the desire for a little more anarchy.
“There are way more rules this year, it’s turned a lot of us off,” Hoffman said, such as the VIP segregation and restrictions on where to carry drinks. “Harley drags are better.”
Laura and Eddy Howlett – who was a finalist in the motorcycle “burnout” competition – waltzed through the vendors Saturday to mingle with some new and familiar faces. They didn’t seem fazed by the heat.
“It’s heat, it’s Kentucky,” Laura Howlett said. “We’re having a blast.”
“We plan on camping next year.”
The festival concludes Sunday with motorcycle drags, helicopter rides and rock ’n’ roll from artists No Deceit, Tailgate Revival, Jenn Ford and the Wide Eyed Devils, C4, Louisiana Swamp Donky and Colt Ford. The gates open at 10 a.m. and close at 5 p.m.