The third annual Women’s Motorcycle Show was held in downtown Los Angeles at the Lucky Wheels Garage. Proper to its title, the Women’s Motorcycle Show is a celebration of all things motorcycling with the caveat that all the bikes on display are customized and designed by women.
The motorcycle industry and riding population has been and continues to be a male-dominated industry, but in the past couple of years, women have been making inroads to balance the scales. The growth has been slow but also steady. According to the Motorcycle Industry Council's latest Motorcycle Owner’s Survey, women riders account for 14 percent of the total motorcycle riding population in the United States as of 2015. While 14 percent is still a small portion of the whole, women are demanding more of a seat at the table and much of the industry is beginning to listen and embrace their presence as riders and decision makers.
Events like the Women’s Motorcycle Show just go to show that women can do it just as good as the men and they are welcomed in the industry. I personally am a big fan of more women getting involved in the motorcycle community. It’s refreshing and I have always enjoyed attending the Women’s Motorcycle Show since it’s inception.
Especially this year, it seemed that everyone got the memo about the show. I arrived at 6 p.m. on the dot and venue was PACKED. I grabbed a coffee at the Lucky Wheels Coffee Shop and waded my way through the crowd. After seeing a number of friendly faces and striking up numerous conversations, I sat back took in some of the live music.
Motorcycle shows always fundamentally showcase the same thing: Food, booze, and really cool motorcycles. But what stood out most this year was The Real Deal Booth hosted by Jessi Combs, Theresa Contreras, and Joy Brenneman.
“It was so exciting to have these amazing women showcasing their talents in welding, pinstriping, and metalwork,” said Alicia Elfving, Host and Founder of the Women’s Motorcycle Show and TheMotoLady.com. “These women are real badasses and they are all highly respected. It’s great to have this level of talent here at the show not only to introduce attendees to these laborious arts but to pass along that knowledge.”
As the night came to a close and people were ushered out, I was able to get to the venue to shoot the 27 custom motorcycles on display from the various female builders. If there is one word that can define the motorcycle community it is diversity. Not only who you are as a motorcyclist but what you ride. Bikes and riders come in all shapes, sizes, and suited for varying purposes. And that is exactly what The Women’s Motorcycle Show embodies.
“When I started TheMotoLady, I focused on sharing photos and video of women motorcyclists that I found inspiring and eye-catching, as well as chronicling my own trials, tribulations, and triumphs when getting into riding and working on my bike,” says Elfving. “I started the Women’s Motorcycle Show to take those same MotoLady goals and move them from an online format to a real-world space. Showing women's bikes of all styles, not just ground-up builds but also motorcycles with parts specific to a function. From cosmetic beauty-queen creations to Mad Max style rat bikes, purpose-built racers, and restorations.”
We look forward to this show continuing for many years to come and playing a positive role in the growth of the motorcycle community.