40 years of Fall Ride: Annual motorcycle rally returns to Tomahawk next week
By Jalen Maki
Tomahawk Leader Editor
TOMAHAWK – Tomahawk will once again feel the thunder as the 40th annual Tomahawk Veterans Fall Ride rumbles into the city next week.
Even after four decades, the annual motorcycle rally continues to draw thousands of visitors to Tomahawk, where riders can take in the scenic sights of the Northwoods and enjoy everything the area has to offer. This year, a slate of events is set to take place from Thursday, Sept. 16 through Saturday, Sept. 18.
Chamber’s Bonfire and Brat Fry
If you’re looking to kick off Fall Ride with a bit of tradition, look no further than the Tomahawk Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Bonfire and Brat Fry.
The event, featuring brats, cold beverages and live music by Brian McLaughin, is set to take place at SARA Park on Thursday, Sept. 16, from 6 p.m. and 9 p.m.
For more information, contact the Chamber at 715-453-5334.
All riders are invited to take part in the Thunder Parade on Friday night. Lineup for the parade starts at the Tomahawk School District complex at 5 p.m., with departure at 6 p.m. Riders will wind their way along area backroads before returning to downtown Tomahawk, where W. Wisconsin Ave. will be lined with spectators watching the parade roar through town.
Tomahawk Main Street, Inc., is taking the helm for this year’s downtown festivities.
Vendors will be set up on 2nd and 3rd Streets, and live music can be found downtown throughout the rally.
Mike McAbee will be performing by the food and beer tents on Friday, Sept. 17, from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. The Friday Night Street Dance on the east end of Wisconsin Ave. will feature Killing Rapunzel, who will take the stage after the Thunder Parade on Friday, Sept. 17.
Live music by the food and beer tents on Saturday, Sept. 18 will be provided by Marty Frei, who is set to perform from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. Bryan Anderson and Older Budwiser will perform at the east end of Wisconsin Ave. from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m., followed by KIST, a KISS tribute band, taking the stage for the Saturday Night Street Dance from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m.
At the west end of W. Wisconsin Ave., Fusion will provide live music for Fall Ride goers to check out. Road Trip will take the stage at 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 17. On Saturday, Sept. 18, Kings of Radio will perform at 7 p.m.
El Jovenaso 2, 4 W. Wisconsin Ave., and Corner Pub, 8 W. Wisconsin Ave., will also each have live music during the rally.
Doug Kroening is set to take the stage at Corner Pub at 8 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 16. The Hucksters will play at Corner Pub on Friday, Sept. 17, from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. The Influence will fill Corner Pub’s 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. time slot on Saturday, Sept. 18.
Jennifer Reisch Solo Acoustic is slated to perform at El Jovenaso 2 on Friday, Sept. 17, from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. The following day, Michael Saint will take the stage at El Jovenaso 2 from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Three days’ worth of Fall Ride activites are scheduled to take place at SARA Park, 900 W. Somo Ave.
The events begin at noon on Thursday, Sept. 16, with merchandise vendor displays and sales, featuring leather, clothing, motorcycle products, jewelry, and leather sewing, as well as a variety of other products. Official Fall Ride merchandise will also be available for sale.
On Friday, Sept. 17 and Saturday, Sept. 18, Harley-Davidson will offer demo fleets, providing the opportunity a ride on any one of the 2022 Harley-Davidson motorcycles. Registration will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Merchandise vendors and displays and official Fall Ride merchandise, as well as food vendors and refreshments, will be available at SARA Park throughout the rally.
Bubba’s Big Party
The 40th annual Fall Ride will once again see one of its staples bring the party to Bubba’s Campground, adjoining Nokomis Community Park.
Bubba’s Big Party will run from Monday, Sept. 13, through Saturday, Sept. 18.
Early Bird parties will be held each day from Monday, Sept. 13 through Thursday, Sept. 16, featuring a bonfire and live music from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. each night. Bernie Thompson will perform on Monday, followed by Brad Emmanuel on Tuesday, Older Budwiser on Wednesday, and the Northwoods Skitchers on Thursday.
Friday, Sept. 17 is free to the public. A pancake breakfast will be served at the Nokomis Fire Department from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. A church service will be held at 9:30 a.m. The vending show kicks off at 10 a.m. and will run until close. The Best ‘80s Outfit Contest will take place at 10 p.m.
Friday will also see numerous live music acts. Mark Wayne will perform from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Levi Ballenger will take the stage from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., followed by Madman’s Diary from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. and Nightrain from 10:30 p.m. to close.
Admission on Saturday Sept. 18 is $10 for those ages 17 and older, and free for those 16 and under. A pancake breakfast will again be held at the Nokomis Fire Department from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m., and a church service will take place at 9:30 a.m. The auto show, with free registration, will be held from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., while the vending show will again run from 10 a.m. until close. Lawn mower, bar stool, and mud bog races will kick off at noon and end at 5 p.m. A burnout contest will be held at 3 p.m. Later in the evening, the Biker Butt Contest will take place at 11:30 p.m.
A full slate of music is lined up for Saturday, with Mark Wayne performing from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., followed by The Dukes from 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Hyde will take the stage from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., with Storm closing out the night, performing from 8:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.
A blood drive, co-sponsored by St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church and Tomahawk Community Bank, will take place from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 17, at St. Paul Church, 12 E. Wisconsin Ave., Tomahawk.
The blood drive will be held the mobile bus in the church’s secondary parking lot.
Advance registration is requested. To register, call The Community Blood Center at 800-280-4102 or visit www.communityblood.org/donor. Once on the website, log in, click “Donate Now” and enter sponsor code D137.
Tomahawk Leader’s Fall Ride Guide
The Tomahawk Leader’s Fall Ride Guide is a must-have to be in the know about the rally.
The guide can be found at businesses throughout the Tomahawk area, as well as downtown. Flip through to find info on the history of Fall Ride, live music, events, vendors, and more, and be sure to stop by local businesses that have placed advertisements throughout the Guide.