Okay, folks, here t'is: the final roundup of Myrtle Beach Bike Week photos and reportage.
It was a strange rally this go-round; for one thing, Ocean Boulevard's main drag, which used to be the epicenter of both cruising and sidewalk-commando gawking, is pretty much deserted these days. The Pavilion and Pavilion Amusement Park, staples of my and many others' ill-spent youth, are long gone. Peaches' Corner, once a fine spot for people-watching from the stools at the counter, was absolutely barren; on Thursday night not one soul graced the place.
This is mostly because nowadays they keep only the southbound two lanes open to traffic, starting at 29th Avenue North and running all the way down past where the Pavilion used to be. The northbound lanes are reserved for cops and emergency vehicles, which mostly means...cops. Cops on foot, cops on bicycles, cops in radio cars, and even cops on...gulp...Segways.
They seem to have killed off The Strip at Myrtle Beach entirely, best I could tell. I saw maybe twenty bikes, tops, out cruising Ocean Boulevard on Thursday night. And the people hanging out on the front porch of the Beach House, another classic bike-babe-and-people-watching spot, all seemed sort of shell-shocked and subdued. Which last, in a very literal sense, they had been.
But fret not, party animals; bikers are a resourceful and tenacious lot, and they will always find a way to cut loose and get down. Everybody seems to have decided to take their profane selves -- and their profane money -- elsewhere. Places like Broadway at the Beach, the new Hard Rock Park, the Dog House in North Myrtle Beach, and the Rat Hole were packed -- the last of which actually made a point of advertising that they're located "just outside the Myrtle Beach city limits," just in case anyone had any doubts about whether this migration was in response to the excessively heavy-handed and most unwelcoming over-policing going on inside the confining environs of Myrtle Beach Actual.
And a good time was most certainly had by all. Photos below the jump.