Austin is home to many big events but the Republic of Texas motorcycle Rally (ROT Rally) is one of the more unique (and loud) ones. While the majority of the event is held at the Travis County Exposition Center, downtown Austin is buzzing for two days and nights with thousands of bikers. The festivities include a motorcycle parade and concert on Congress Avenue on the blocks in front of the Texas Capitol. Meanwhile Sixth Street is mostly closed off between Congress Ave. and I-35, except for a narrow lane for bikes to drive through, with the area full of motorcycles and people.
As you can see in the gallery below the event is truly a feast for the eyes, from the signs outside the bars to the bikers outfits to the vastly wide array of motorcycles, and more. While the downtown portion of the event was packed and crazy, it also appeared to go off without a hitch. The city of Austin did a great job dealing with the crowds and policing the event, and revelers were in a friendly, festive mood.
This year's ROT Rally was my first and I have to say that after attending the downtown festivities for a couple of days that this is on my list of must attend events on a yearly basis. There are just so many interesting things to see that a photographer can't ignore. I also met a lot of interesting people who were willing to tell me the stories of their bikes, outfits, crews, whatever. Below is a video that shows the motorcycle parade down Congress Ave. Watch it and you'll get a feel for the excitement of the event and crowds that came out to be a part of it.