Today was the Dierks Bentley Miles and Music For Kids motorcycle ride.
It started at the Harley Davidson in Cool Springs. (I was there.) It ventured down the beautiful winding road called Barry’s Chapel. (I was there). Then onto Highway 46 after crossing Highway 96 and heading into Leiper’s Fork. (I was there.) Then onto Pinewood and the Natchez Trace Parkway.
I missed that last intersection, because I took another route to the Natchez Trace Bridge over Highway 96 in Franklin where I and a handful of other photographers waited for the motorcycle riders to pass over the bridge near Birdsong Park.
Here’s What I Saw…
I’m not sure exactly how many people knew that something was just about to take place in front of the Harley Davidson in Cool Springs.
I say that because the police remained hidden until the very last moment. And the riders themselves were lined up on the side or in back of the Harley Davidson building — completely out of site from the public.
It wasn’t until the ride started precisely at 2PM that there was even the slightest traffic build-up in front of one of the busiest malls in Tennessee (Cool Springs Mall). Overall, everything went without a hitch — best I can tell.
And then came the moment of truth. The point where all of the riders crossed within inches of my camera lens at the most beautiful place on the Natchez Trace Parkway: that one-of-a-kind expansion bridge!
Dierks Bentley Celebrity Motorcycle Riders Up Close
There he is!… The leader of the pack. The first motorcyclist to appear after the police escort.
Is it him?… Could it be?… The one and only?… The master of ceremonies?… The Dierks of all Bentleys?
Heck, who am I kidding? I haven’t a clue. I’m afraid I can’t even recognize my own husband with a helmet on sometimes!
And no girlfriend, the flash of the abs doesn’t help. (Nice though!)
“Honey, that girl is taking our picture. Maybe she won’t recognize who you are.” (Don’t worry, I didn’t recognize who you were.)
Okay, I might’ve gotten a little too close to the yellow line on this one…
An example of multi-tasking on a motorcycle: 1) Ride in a charity event, and 2) Try to sell your bike at the same time!
The ride must’ve had at least a thousand motorcyclists in the mix (…or more!).
There were actually 2 waves of riders — each with a separate police escort. Just when you thought you’d seen it all from the first group and most of the spectators along the Natchez Trace had packed up… another wave of several hundred riders rode by and waved to those of us who remained.
Onto The Jam Session!…
From the Natchez Trace Bridge, the motorcyclists ventured onward toward the Loveless Cafe — the site of the jam session which was soon to follow.
But instead of following them, I backtracked and went back to Highway 96, then down Highway 100 to the back entrance of the concert location — behind the Shell gas station and Loveless Cafe. Everyone else followed behind the motorcycles and ended up at the very back of the line while the riders were being escorted into an adjacent field between the Natchez Trace Bridge that spans over Highway 100 and the nearby Shell gas station and Loveless Cafe.
Coming from this opposite direction, I got a whole ‘nother perspective of the thousands of motorcycles that were parked and the motorcyclists who were now walking in single file over to the Loveless Cafe.
The only part I didn’t personally get to see was the jam session. (Bummer.)
The ride started at 2PM sharp from the Cool Springs Harley Davidson and ended around 3:30 when the last bike was parked. Or so I thought…
As I ventured back up onto the Natchez Trace Parkway (milemarker 444) from Highway 100, I came upon what appeared to be the “sag vehicle” (support and gear, as it’s called in my sport: bicycling). There, in front of some well-marked motorcycle-toting trucks was a lone motorcyclist walking his bike across the last leg of the ride. Now that‘s a celebrity!!!
A Celebrity In Many Peoples’ Eyes
Oddly enough, the only pseudo celebrity I saw (and recognized on first glance) was Pastor David Foster, and his wife Paula. They caused quite a stir too… people were honkin’ and waving at them as they crossed the street. I actually wasn’t surprised to see Dr. Foster participating in this ride. I mean, he did ride his Harley into a BCC church service one day (…it was an informal service held at Belmont University to kick off BCC’s capital campaign a few years ago).
I like to help people find unique ways to do things in order to save time & money — so I write about “outside the box” ideas that most wouldn’t think of. As a lifelong dog owner, I often share my best tips for living with and training dogs. I worked in Higher Ed over 10 years before switching gears to pursue activities that I’m truly passionate about. I’ve worked at a vet, in a photo lab, and at a zoo — to name a few. I enjoy the outdoors via bicycle, motorcycle, Jeep, or RV. You can always find me at the corner of Good News & Fun Times as publisher of The Fun Times Guide (32 fun & helpful websites).