Small towns have always kind of freaked me out. Maybe it’s because I’ve seen too many movies. Every time I think of cornfields, I envision a cult of children brutally mutilating me like in Stephen King’s 1984 cult classic, Children of the Corn. And every year when I travel to Anamosa, Iowa, for the J&P Cycles Open House, a part of me wonders if I’m going to make it back home alive.
All kidding aside, John and Jill Parham’s vision in 1979 to sell aftermarket cycle parts in Smallville, Iowa, eventually grew into a global empire to where the company now distributes aftermarket accessories—from handlebars to performance engines.
Any successful business knows that it owes a great deal of gratitude to its customers and J&P Cycles recognizes its clientele by hosting an annual soiree known as the Open House in order to thank its patrons for their continued business over the years.
After 33 years of partying—and since nobody ever wanted to leave after one day—the shindig was rebranded as the Open House Rally and extended from a one-day event to a two-day party that took place this past June 24-25. Free food, plenty of activities, and vendors set up shop to explain their products to the general public. And let’s not forget that shoppers could pick up the latest goods from J&P’s gigantic retail store where product manufacturing spokespersons were on hand to explain each of their products to customers at the event.
More than thirty-thousand folks made the trek to J&P’s gargantuan facilities in Anamosa. Extreme trials rider, Geoff Aaron showed off his skills and of course, the craziness of 1 Wheel Revolution’s Rob Carpenter and Chris Rayburn wowed attendees with incredible stunts aboard Buells and Sportsters.
“There’s such a feeling of pride seeing all the motorcycles come in,” stated J&P Cycles General Manager Zach Parham about the 33rd annual event. “It is truly a celebration of life on two wheels.”
Another great reason that J&P Cycles and the National Motorcycle Museum hosts the Open House Rally is to help raise money and awareness for nearby Camp Courageous, a not-for-profit respite care and recreational facility that caters to disabled individuals of all ages. In 2012, more than $13,000 was raised for Camp Courageous on behalf of the Museum, J&P Cycles, and attendees of the Open House Rally.
If you didn’t have a chance to check out the 2012 Open House Rally, then you’re in luck because next year’s event is already slated to take place June 29-30, 2013. See you there, if you dare.
To beat the humid heat, locals float down the Wapsi River.
The General Store Pub in nearby Stone City is a great place for grub!
John Hoppe from Hoppe Industries (left) and Ed Files from Cycle Sounds (right) pose for a