Motorcycles + Economy = Win

PARAGOULD (KAIT) - There are thousands of motorcycles in Arkansas and as the price of gas goes up you see more and more of them on the roads. So what kind of economic impact do these two wheelers have on the state?

When you buy a car you pretty much take it as is. Oh a few will add things like fancy wheels or other accessories but for the most part it stays like you bought it.

On the other hand those of us who own motorcycles like to personalize them to make them stand out in a crowd.

Dave Caldwell, Owner, Dave's Bikes & Trikes, "No they're gonna chrome em up. There wanting saddle bags, chrome racks, different pipes. "

Ricky Mashburn, "Gotta have the handle grips the floor boards, there's a chrome cover off the radiator, the passenger floorboard, the chrome luggage rack."

All of this adds up to cash in somebodies register.

With gas creeping up and good weather people are shopping for motorcycles so what are they buying.

Dennis Hogland, "Mid range bikes what we call the 650 -  750 CC range which is in the 5 to 6500 dollar range. Which will get you over the 60 miles per gallon. It's affordable, and the scooters are quite popular."

"All types of people riding bikes, all ages, we got people up in the sixties, seventies."

And all these riders have to go somewhere.

According to "Riding South Magazine" riders from at least six surrounding states and across the nation have made Arkansas their travel destination. Travelers dollars spent in Arkansas. Just look at the number of bikes that have been in our area for the biker classics.

One of the ways you can tell that motorcycles have a huge impact on the economy is that with the price of gas so high, people are buying new motorcycles, bringing out motorcycles they haven't ridden for years to be fixed and the people who take care of them say they are so busy they have to turn business away.

Caldwell, "yeah we're turning work away every day. People dragging old bikes out, that hadn't run in five or six years and saying make this run. And some of these old bikes you can't even get parts for anymore. And it just breaks their heart because they say they I want it to run and you say you can't get parts."

Buying the bikes, accessories or fixing up the ol' hog or going on a road trip it means money spent here in Arkansas. And that's good business.

And just in case you're curious the current number of motorcycles registered in Arkansas as of April is Sixty Three Thousand Eight Hundred Seventy Eight .