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727 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In memory of my late father...the original ride coordinator of the 'Coast-to Coast' ride across Florida,'83-'85.

'History of the Florida Coast2Coast Ride'

My parents are from Murray, KY. While dating, my mom's younger brother had a Cushman scooter mom & dad would ride around town on. My parents first two-wheel experience.

In the 'Summer of '67', we make the move to the Paducah, KY area.

Back then we went camping almost every weekend, usually in southern Illinios in the 'Shawnee National Forest' or the 'Land Between the Lakes' in western Kentucky.
Most of the time we went camping with a couple of friends from mom's workplace, who had matching yellow Honda CT90's.
A year later, we have a red Honda CT90.

In the 'Spring of '75', dad gets a new Honda XL175 and then I continue to ride the red Honda CT90.
In the 'Spring of '76', I buy a used '72 Honda SL125.

It was a great way to grow up, being outdoors & riding thru the woods with my dad.

My parents move to the Tampa area (Dover) in October '77.
In 'August of '79', my parents buy a new leftover '78 Honda 750K w/Vetter Windjammer fairing & Bates saddlebags/trunk.

Dad very much anticipated turning '40' in November '79 so he could join the 'Retreads', which he did.

In 'January of '80', I buy a new leftover candy red '79 Kawasaki KZ650 w/colored matched Vetter Vindicator fairing with back rest/luggage rack.

In 'January of '81', I permantly make the move to the Tampa area.

In the late 'Spring of '81', my parents move to Kissimmee, FL, where a few months later, my parents host/form the 'Central Florida Retreads' out of Orlando, FL.

This is what my mom wrote about on their first chapter ride:
'Our first ride that we hosted was from Orlando to the 'Southeast Regional Retreads Rally' held in Brunswick, GA on Oct. 9, 10, 11, 1981. There were 13 folks who made the ride to Brunswick.'

My parents hosted this chapter until June '82, at that time my parents made the move back to the Tampa area (Dover).
Shortly thereafter, my parents buy a silver two-toned Honda GL1100 Gold Wing Aspencade.

In 'July of '82', my parents host/form the 'West Central Florida Retreads' chapter out of Tampa, FL.
On July 8th., 1982, at 7:30pm., the 'West Central Florida Retreads' had a get acquanted coffee at the 'Dutch Pantry' on W. Hillsborough Ave. in Tampa.
There was 16 Retreads and one guest attending.

There were 24 motorcycles, 40 folks on the first monthly ride on July 25th., 1982 on a scenic ride to Inverness for lunch at 'Hay's Kountry Kitchen'.

On August 1st., 1982, my dad is appointed 'Central Florida Area Rep' for the Retreads.

My parents are very successful in this endeavor, forming local chapters in the area, getting alot of folks out riding, hosting rides and still hosting the 'West Central Florida Retreads' in Tampa.

In 'August of '83', I buy a new leftover '82 Honda GL500 Silver Wing Interstate.

Sometime in the 'Spring of '83', my parents decide to organize/host a ride that would begin on the west coast of Florida and end on the east coast of Florida, with some very scenic roads in between.
This would be a 'Retreads' event, called 'Coast-to Coast' that took place in 'October of '83' (NOTE: there is some confusing as to when the first 'Coast-to-Coast' ride across Florida took place...whether it took place on the first Saturday of Oct. or the last Saturday of Oct. ... folks I have talked to can not agree, since it has been 23 years ago).
The ride began at 'The Bank Restaurant' (now Shepards' Resort) in Clearwater Beach and ended in a park on Cocoe Beach. Very well attended.

In 'January of '84', dad resigns from being a Retreads area rep.
But right away, he is appointed 'Area Rep for Area C' for the 'American Gold Wing Association' (AGWA).
Dad forms the first 'AGWA' chapter in the state, the AMA chartered, 'Pleasure Wings of Brandon'

My parents still host the 'West Central Florida Retreads'

In 'August of '84', the 'West Central Florida Retreads' resigns from the Retreads to become an AMA chartered club, renamed to 'Sun State Road Riders', part of the 'Florida AMA District 8'

On Saturday, October 6th., 1984, with my parents leadership, along with Dave & Norma Casper, the 'AMA AGWA Pleasure Wings' hosted the 'Coast-to-Coast II' ride across Florida.
It started/ended as the same as the '83 ride, again on some very nice roads.

On Saturday, October 5th., 1985, again with my parents leadership, the 'AMA Sun State Road Riders' hosted the 'Coast-to Coast III' rida across Florida.
This time it again started in Clearwater Beach, with some very good back roads, ended in Daytona Beach.
Estimated attendance: 320

This would be my dad's last ride to host. 'Cause of health/personal reasons, he had to resign from hosting the 'Coast-to-Coast' ride across Florida.

In 1986, I ran for 'AMA District 8' points and finished 8th. the final points standings.
There was a 'Coast-to Coast' ride in '86, but then again, no one now can remember who hosted it.

As a compliment to my parents efforts/success of the 'Coast-to-Coast' ride across Florida, other clubs/individuals tried to carry on the 'Coast-to-Coast' ride across Florida, but I do not now the results of their efforts but I do know the ride finally faded away.

In 'August of '95', my parents/I move to Clarksville, TN.

On April 29th., 1996, I buy a new candy red Honda GL1500 Gold Wing Aspencade and one week later, my dad gets a pearl white/silver metalic '96 Honda GL1500 Gold Wing SE.

Finally, me & dad are now riding together on basically the same kind of motorcycle and it was a great time when we were able to get to ride together.

In 'July '97', dad was on the verge of accepting the position of a 'Retreads Area Rep' for TN., but then I was hit by a car that crossed the center line while on the Gold Wing.
Me requiring alot of rehab, he declined the position.

In 'August '99', dad passed away from complications from colon cancer. He was just three months short of his 60th. birthday.
He is now resting peacefully in his hometown of Murray, KY.

In 'April of 2002', me & mom decide it was time to move back to the Tampa area.
Then I start thinking about resurrecting dad's ride, the 'Coast-to-Coast' ride across Florida.

In 'July 2002', I buy a new pearl orange 2002 Honda GL1800 Gold Wing from Sloan's Cycle in Murfreesboro, TN.

In 'December 2002', we make the move back to the Tampa area (Valrico).

Memorial Day 2003 weekend, I start to date the very spirited 'Debra Lindsey', and with her help/support, in 'August 2003', the thought/planning process began to resurrect dad's 'Coast-to-Coast' ride across Florida.

On Saturday, October 2nd., 2004, the 'FL. Coast-2-Coast Ride...The ReSurrection 2004' took place.
The ride started from 'Howard Park' on the Gulf of Mexico in Tarpon Springs, with some very scenic back roads, with the last check point being at 'Corbin's' on Main Street, in Daytona Beach.
All proceeds from the ride benefited the 'Leaukemia-Lymphoma Society'

All who attended enjoyed the ride and wanted it to return 2005.

But. five days after the ride, I'm in the hospital to be told I have 'Hodgkins-Lymphoma'
So began a very trying ten month battle.
In 'August 2005', I'm told I am good to go!

At the 'Motorcycle Tourer's Forum ( Founder's Feast' in September '05 in New Castle, IN., I was told the MTF was interested in my ride for their 2006 ride event calendar.

One month later, it was official!

'Florida Coast2Coast Ride II' is Saturday, October 14th., 2006

Again, all proceeds benefit the 'Leaukemia-Lymphoma Society'

'Florida...come explore it!'

727 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
More info:

On October 14th., 2006, the 'Florida Coast2Coast Ride II' took place.

It began at 'Howard Park' in Tarpon Springs, on the Gulf of Mexico & last check point was 'Sunset Park' in Holly Hill (Daytona Beach), on the shoreline of the 'Halifax River' (International Waterway).

Over 170+ folks participated.
Folks came from TX, AL, SC, GA, KY, PA, NC, FL, & Canada.

Some Awards:

'Long Distance Rider': Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
'Long Distance Female Rider': Bedford, TX
'Oldest Participant': 78
'Youngest Participant': 10
'Oldest Motorcycle': 1966 Honda CB160

$4532.00 was raised & given to the 'Luekemia-Lymphoma Society'

727 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I have discovered more info 'bout the 'History of Florida Coast2Coast Ride'

This was written in the 'AMA District 8' newsletter in November 1985, 'bout the 'Coast to Coast III' ride across Florida that took place on October 5th., 1985:

'Over 250 motorcycles met at the Bank Restaurant on October 5th. for the 'Coast to Coast III' ride starting in Clearwater Beach, ending in Daytona Beach (221.9 miles).

The weather was nice except for some rain which the club did not order but recieved anyway.'

Then it goes on 'bout the individual awards.

Me & my girlfriend at the time, worked the end check point for this ride, at a restaurant on A1A on Daytona Beach.

This was the last 'Coast to Coast' ride across Florida that my parents hosted. It was their idea to originaze a ride across Florida in 1983.

727 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I have now in my possision, the entire entry list for the 'FL Coast to Coast Ride' that took place on October 2nd., 1988.

The ride started in Sarasota, & ended in Daytona Beach.

There was 184 registered participates.

Harry & Joyce Wiggins, whom we know very well, hosted this ride in 1988.

This is all I know as of right now.

113 Posts
If you do, let me know. I can give you a fix for your 'SR40 is what it is' comment. (ie: backroads to finish your route)

24 Posts
Great Story

What a wonderful story! I could just visualize the years going by and you and your Dad getting closer and closer as the years go by. I guess nothing beats priceless memories.
I'd love to be part of the next "ride" as long as I can find "my" new Wing. (Still looking for an 04-06 with all the goodies near the Tampa area in case you come by any).
Thanks again for the story.
Palm Harbor

Premium Member
12,496 Posts
FLC2C_Cruzn'AL said:

Yes, I would like a fix for 'SR 40 is what it is'

Stay tuned!
Huh? ... I'm lost ... is this another inside joke?
(I normally wouldn't care but I live just off SR40 )

ok ... I'm tuned ... now what?


113 Posts

You could say it was an inside joke(comment). The route for last year was primarily back-roads from Tarpon Springs to Daytona. However, when they arrived in Barberville at Cr-3 and Sr-40, they made a bee-line to Ormond. And, even though I have ridden on worse roads than Sr-40, it is not a quiet country road.

In keeping with the rest of the route, I offered a suggestion that would take them through some of the farm country east of Perry.

405 Posts
lets ride again

I still have that grandson with that disease. Of 8 beautiful grandchildren he is the only on that gets that chemo every week.

This old man will ride that ride as long as he can.

thanks for your Mom and Dad for starting it and for you continueing it.

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