Musings From the 2012 J&P Open House Rally

July 2, 2012 | By: Scott Holton


Editor’s Note: Scott Holton, a 1987 graduate of Motorcycle Mechanics Institute and a senior technician at J&P Cycles, wrote today’s blog post during the second day of this year’s Open House Rally here in Anamosa, Iowa.

I’m typing this on a Sunday morning smack dab in the middle of the 2012 J&P Cycles Open House Rally. Saturday was a crowded day that kept me tied up fulltime at the back tech counter. I’ve been working with a couple of sharp characters from our Florida store who were flown up especially for this event, and of course, we’ve got Merrill, our regular back-counter guru.

We had a steady stream of folks asking tough questions on Saturday, but among us, we were able to field them all. This year we had the largest number of vendors ever show up to strut their stuff and a record-setting crowd to take it all in. I’ve been working the J&P Open House Rally for the last 11 years and each one has been bigger and better than the one before. And seeing repeat customers with huge smiles on their faces makes it all worthwhile.


It rained early this morning and it put a damper on customer participation. But the clouds will blow over and no doubt the turnout will be better later on today. Putting on an event like this is a huge undertaking and each J&P team member has a specific task to perform. The entire crew is working hard to make this weekend’s event a success. Our parts runners are hustling and things are running pretty smoothly today. Jay and Willie are tapping away at their computer keyboards as they look up info for customers, and like I predicted earlier in this paragraph, things indeed seem to be picking up.

One of the great things about this annual event is seeing all the vendors we work with by phone on a daily basis. It’s phenomenal being able to put a name with a voice you speak to on the phone all year. Seeing the same vendors year after year is a comforting sight because we’ve all formed a special bond through this event It’s a big motorcycle world, but it’s a tight knit group of folks that work together to do events like this.


It’s later in the day now, and of course the humidity is through the roof as it rained earlier today, but I’m not seeing anyone complaining. It’s a carnival-like atmosphere and while everybody’s hot and sticky, they’re enjoying seeing all the sights and sounds.

We had a really great time. If you made this year’s show, we want to thank you for coming. If you haven’t been here, you should start planning to be here at next year’s event. Like we do every year, we’re already making plans for Open House Rally in 2013 – June 29-30.

You might disagree with me — and I admit to a bit of prejudice — but it’s my opinion our rally has become one of the premier motorcycle events in the Midwest.

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