While Arkansas’ Ozark Mountains are just a shadow compared to the Colorado Rocky Mountains out west or the Appalachian Mountains to the east, they still bless the south-central United States region with their own majestic peaks and valleys. Motorcyclists enjoy riding Arkansas’ mountainous highways and byways, filled with twists and turns, from spring to fall. The Ozark community of Mountain View opened up the city and its southern hospitality for motorcyclists everywhere 15 years ago by creating Mountains, Music and Motorcycles special event. As we spoke to earlier about the Folk Festival, Mountain View is located within the Ozark Mountains, and we made a return trip to that glorious city in August for their 14th annual Mountains, Music and Motorcycles event.
Our first introduction to this event was in 2013. It was a photo assignment when I was freelancing with the newspaper. We made multiple return trips over the years. We met some wonderful people, interesting characters, and got some amazing photos back then. One year, I took a photo of a man proposing to his girlfriend during the biker games. Trips to the event stopped after 2016 when my freelance relationship with the newspaper ended. We decided to return to the event in August 2019.
Mountain View has a standard population of around 2,853 as of 2017. It’s not a big city. But when they hold multiple annual events in and around the community throughout the year, it grows exponentially. Motorcycle riders, organizations, and enthusiasts from around the country and a few international visitors converge upon this Ozark Mountain town of fewer than 3,000 people. The weekend consists of lots of music, a car show, a bike show, biker games, a Poker run and more. My favorite event to photograph is the biker games.
The games start with the slow ride (pictured on the left), which is a competition between two bikers who ride their bike down a short street next to the Mountain View courthouse at the slowest possible speed without one foot touching the ground. If a foot touches the ground, the rider is eliminated.
For the second game, two couples each on their own motorcycle slowly approach a hot dog coated in mustard that is hanging from a pole and the passenger must reach up and take a bite of the hot dog. That’s a lot harder than it sounds. There were a few hits and a few misses.
The third game is the water balloon toss. Once again, two couples each on their own motorcycle approach a pole, toss the water balloon over the pole and catch it on the other side. Well, you know what happens when a water balloon isn’t caught? You get a mid-day shower.
I included this photo because I love teddy bears and collect them. I couldn’t pass this one up.
Mountain View has more to offer than just all their festivals and special events. They have the Ozark Folk Center and so much more. Go to their website, yourplaceinthemountains.com, to learn all that they have to offer. Look at our FARE Pix Gallery to see more photos from Mountains, Music and Motorcycles.