Friday, November 13, 2009

Win a pink Vespa & Diamonds while supporting a worthy cause!

‘V’ is for Victory over Breast Cancer Fertility Challenges at

A pink Vespa, diamonds and Visionary Girls get the (fund-raising) party started

LOS ANGELES – Nov. 12, 2009 – The change of the calendar from October to November doesn’t mean breast cancer research and education comes to a stop. To the contrary: at My Vision, a Los Angeles-based nonprofit agency devoted to preserving the fertility of young women affected by cancer, the fight continues in high gear with a special charity auction of a pink Vespa LX 50, accessorized by a V-shaped diamond necklace. Anyone can bid starting Nov. 12 through Dec. 3, 2009, by visiting

One-hundred percent of the online auction proceeds will support My Vision’s unique work. Breast cancer is the leading cancer affecting women in the age 18 to 45 reproductive years. Chemotherapy, surgery and other cancer treatments can make it extremely difficult for a woman to ever have children and can even cause sterility.

“Women have just two to six weeks to consider their fertility options prior to treatment,” said Alice Crisci, founder of My Vision. “And sadly, only 10 percent of oncologists discuss fertility options with their patients. My hope is to give all women a chance to preserve their eggs before undergoing cancer treatment.”

Crisci was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008 at the age of 31. Knowing she wanted to be a mother, she immediately sought answers to her infertility concerns and found very few medical or financial resources to help. Prior to her double mastectomy, she decided to have one round of in vitro fertilization done at the Southern California Reproductive Center. After retrieving 31 eggs, Alice’s doctors where able to preserve 14 frozen embryos with donor sperm from the California Cryobank (CCB) and 11 frozen eggs. Undergoing the fertility process and subsequent cancer treatments inspired Alice to start My Vision.

“At My Vision the letter “V” symbolizes vitality, vision and victory against the disease,” said Crisci. “It also represents Venus the goddess of love, beauty and fertility; so I decided to choose five inspiring breast cancer survivors who personify these characteristics to be our Visionary Girls.”

The Visionary Girls, all of whom were diagnosed with breast cancer in their late 20s to early 40s, are lending their energy to launch the auction and will also star in the 2010 My Vision calendar. Like breast cancer survivors around the world, they come from every walk of life. Lisa Hochberg is a Wharton Business School graduate, business consultant and karaoke lover; Christine Romer is an avid golfer and MBA candidate at Pepperdine University; Sylvie Forrest is a french actress, award-winning sculptor, trained precious jewelry maker, and speaks four languages; Amanda Cassel is a real estate analyst and supporter of Western/Eastern integrated medicine; Ito Maya is a Japanese interpreter; and Alice Crisci is an entrepreneur who frequently lectures and speaks about business topics. Uniting them is a cancer diagnosis that threatened their chances of becoming mothers. My Vision’s mission is to share their success stories with the thousands of women who face similar challenges to motherhood.

The “V” auction begins Nov. 12, 2009, and runs through 3 p.m. EST on Dec. 3, 2009. In addition to the pink Vespa LX 50 and the V-shaped diamond necklace, the winning bidder also receives an autographed, framed photo of all the Visionary Girls. More details can be found on My Vision’s Web site or on Vespa USA’s Web site at

About My Vision

My Vision is a breast cancer awareness project of community partners. The charity educates women touched by breast cancer during their reproductive years about the risk chemo poses to their fertility as well as the fertility preservation options available to patients prior to treatment. Founded by Alice Crisci a few weeks after her own cancer diagnosis, My Vision is a nonprofit organization that relies on the support of private donors to help protect the vision of each young woman's future when she is diagnosed with breast cancer or learns she carries the breast cancer gene. For more information visit their Web site at

About the Piaggio Group

Established in 1884 by Rinaldo Piaggio, and based in Pontedera (Pisa), Italy, the Piaggio Group is one of the world’s top manufacturers of two-wheel motor vehicles. With more than 7,000 employees, an annual production of more than 708,000 vehicles in 2007, five R&D centers, seven production facilities in Europe and Asia, and operations in more than 50 countries, the Piaggio Group has a consolidated leadership in the European two-wheeler market. The company produces scooters, motorcycles and mopeds in the 50cc to 1,200 cc displacement range, marketed under the Piaggio, Vespa, Gilera, Derbi, Aprilia, Scarabeo and Moto Guzzi brands. The Group also manufactures three- and four-wheel light transportation vehicles for the Ape, Porter and Quargo ranges.


Media Contact:

For Vespa USA

Elke Martin

770.649.0880 x 305

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

South Bay SC in a NY Times article!!

Well, two weeks and two different articles where the South Bay Scooter Club was mentioned in the month of October. The newest article came out in the October 22 printing of the famed New York Times!! It appeared on Page F12 of the Automobile section. An overall article about scootering, the South Bay SC had a quick mention, and some cool photos of the club were shown, to highlight the article, written by Dexter Ford. To check it out online, click this link. The article also appeared in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, at this link, though it does not have the accompanying photos online.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

South Bay Scooter Club featured in Beach Magazine!

The South Bay Scooter Club has been featured in an article in the Easy Reader's "Beach" Magazine this week. If you live in the South Bay, you can pick one up at any newstand (included inside the Easy Reader), or download the PDF version here. The article and accompanying photos are on pages 26 & 27.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Vespa supports fight against breast cancer!

This just in from Vespa USA:

Vespa Pink Campaign Supports Fight Against Breast Cancer

A partnership with Lifetime Networks helps boost fund-raising horsepower for
a diverse group of non-profit agencies passionate about changing breast
cancer statistics

NEW YORK – Sept. 9, 2009 – The next time you see a distinctively pink Vespa
zooming by, it might just be one of the Vespa LX 50 scooters that more than
a dozen non-profit agencies devoted to battling breast cancer are adding to
their autumn Breast Cancer Awareness initiatives. Through a partnership with
Lifetime Networks’ 15th annual National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
campaign, “Stop Breast Cancer for Life: The Power of 15,” Vespa USA
(, is bringing a boost of extra horsepower to each of the
participating agencies’ Breast Cancer Awareness Month programs by donating a
limited-edition pink Vespa. Each agency, from internationally known
organizations like The Breast Cancer Research Foundation and the Dr. Susan
Love Research Foundation to the Breast Cancer Network of Strength, My Vision
Foundation, and the Prevent Cancer Foundation, is creating
its own unique Vespa-fueled fund-raising initiative, from online auctions to
special events and membership incentives.

“In today’s economy, people are being more and more selective about how they
donate, which means we are always considering creative ways to connect with
new audiences,” said Dr. Susan Love, President of the Dr. Susan Love
Research Foundation. “While the color pink is now universally associated
with breast cancer awareness, simply being aware is not enough. Our mission
is to move breast cancer beyond a cure and we are doing it by recruiting one
million women nationwide to sign up and be part of our Army of Women
initiative. We welcome Vespa to our arsenal and plan to use our pink Vespa
to ignite all women to reach out and recruit every woman in their life to
sign up and be part of the movement to find the cause and prevent breast
cancer once and for all.”

The Vespa Pink Campaign invites all current and future scooter fans to
actively participate in one or all the Breast Cancer Awareness Month
programs. The agencies adding a pink Vespa to their October fund-raising
initiatives are: Breast Cancer Network of Strength, The Breast Cancer
Research Foundation,, Bright Pink, Cup With Love, Dr. Susan
Love Research Foundation, The Greater New York City Affiliate of Susan G.
Komen for the Cure, My Vision Foundation, Nueva Vida, Prevent Cancer
Foundation, SHARE and the Young Survival Coalition.

Since its post-World War II debut in Italy, Vespa has been a symbol of
freedom – a perfect match for the organizations whose mission it is to help
the millions of women and men touched by the disease to prevent, manage and
survive its indiscriminate reach. Prior to the launch of October’s Vespa
Pink Campaign, Vespa USA dealers already ordered 1,000 limited-edition pink
Vespa LX 50s, some of which were purchased by local supporters of breast
cancer-related causes. Vespa aims to build on the popularity of the retail
models by offering the donated scooters as a platform for catching the eyes
– and donation dollars – of even more supporters.

“There are so many unique needs in the fight against breast cancer, and
we’re happy to play a small part in helping these agencies get the word out
about their special work,” said Paolo Timoni, President and CEO of Piaggio
Group Americas. “For instance, Nueva Vida’s efforts focus on the Latina
community, Breast Cancer Network of Strength provides information from a
survivor’s perspective and the Young Survival coalition is devoted to
education and supporting young women affected by breast cancer – these
organizations and their missions are as diverse as the people who ride

Here is the current list of charity events and activities that feature a
pink Vespa LX 50:

• Breast Cancer Network of Strength will host an
event on October 6 at the Hard Rock Café in Chicago, IL;

• will host an event in Philadelphia November 14 with;

• The Breast Cancer Research Foundation’s auction,
including the pink Vespa LX 50, goes live on September 29
and ends October 22, 2009;

• Bright Pink will list its pink Vespa on eBay during
the month of October with eBay’s Giving Works;

• Cup with Love will conduct a raffle from October 1 –
31, 2009

• Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation will launch a social
media contest titled “How Would You Recruit an Army of Women?,” October
through November, 2009;

• The Greater New York City Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure will offer the Vespa as a reward incentive to fundraisers
who exceed their Komen NYC
Race for the Cure pledge goals between September 14 and October 31;

• My Vision Foundation make a minimum $100 donation through
October for a chance to win the pink Vespa LX 50;

• Nueva Vida will conduct a raffle from September 23
through October 31;

• Prevent Cancer Foundation Sign up for “Screen Your
Boobs” alerts through October and participants are automatically entered to
win the pink Vespa;

• SHARE’s sixth annual “A Second Helping of Life”
tasting and live auction event features leading female chefs and chance to
bid on the pink Vespa LX 50. The event is scheduled for September 21, 2009
from 6 to 9:30 p.m. at Chelsea Piers in New York City. Tickets can be
purchased by calling (212) 719-0364, ext. 239;

• Young Survival Coalition Through November 16, become
a “fan” on the Young Survival Coalition’s Facebook page and you can have a
chance to win the pink Vespa LX 50;

Vespa USA will announce the final details concerning each of the charities’
pink Vespa fundraising initiatives during the middle of September.
Information about the charities and their programs can also be found on the
Vespa USA Web site (

For 15 years, Lifetime’s Stop Breast Cancer for Life initiative has been
dedicated to offering women the most up-to-date, comprehensive information
about breast cancer. Lifetime has also collected more than 24 million
petition signatures on, and for 13 years has fought to urge
Congress to pass the bipartisan Breast Cancer Patient Protection Act. The
bi-partisan bill would end the practice of “drive-through mastectomies,”
which refers to the practice where women are sometimes forced to leave the
hospital just hours after invasive breast surgery.

Breast cancer affects everyone. This year alone, 192,370 new cases of
invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed among women in the United States.
It is the leading cause of cancer death in women ages 15 to 54, and almost
half of all Vespa riders are women. A woman is diagnosed with breast cancer
every three minutes and the disease claims a life every 13 minutes. These
women are mothers, sisters, wives – but breast cancers also directly touches
men. Every year almost 2,000 men are diagnosed with breast cancer and 440
will die.

About The Piaggio Group:

Established in 1884 by Rinaldo Piaggio and based in Pontedera (Pisa), Italy,
the Piaggio Group is one of the world’s top manufacturers of two-wheel motor
vehicles. With more than 7,000 employees, an annual production of more than
650,000 vehicles in 2008, five R&D centers, seven production facilities in
Europe and Asia, and operations in more than 50 countries, the Piaggio Group
has a consolidated leadership in the European two-wheeler market. The
company produces scooters, motorcycles and mopeds in the 50cc to 1,200 cc
displacement range, marketed under the Piaggio, Vespa, Gilera, Derbi,
Aprilia, Scarabeo and Moto Guzzi brands. The Group also manufactures three-
and four-wheel light transportation vehicles for the Ape, Porter and Quargo
ranges. For more information about Piaggio USA, visit:


Elke Martin
For Vespa USA

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Upcoming Summer Rallies & Events!

Haven't done an update for quite some time, but here is the latest info of upcoming SoCal Scooter Events & Rallies (taken form the SoCal Scooter weekly newsletter; sign up for it, here):


Downtown Los Angeles, CA

The Italian American Museum of Los Angeles (IAMLA) is hosting the "Taste of Italy", a wine and food festival at the historic Pico House off the Plaza on Olvera Street in LA, 424 North Main Street, L.A., CA 90012.

Set in Los Angeles' historic Little Italy, there will be authentic Italian cuisine, fine wine and live music. Admission is $25 per person (the admission price gets you a chance to win two round trip tickets to Italy!). If you have anybody that is too young to drink, they can still buy a ticket to the raffle if they like. Scooters can park on Sanchez Street right next to the Pico House.

The event was planned to involve the community in the planning of the new museum which will be located at the northwest end of Olvera Street. Why there? You'll have to come and find out!

The event is from 5pm-9pm. Please plan to join us for our first Taste of Italy!

Info: (213) 485-8432, or visit

Hollywood, CA

Club Impact invites everyone to their 25th Anniversary party, Saturday, June 27th, 2009. It is happening at Kung Pao Kitty , 6445 Holywood Blvd., Hollywood, CA 90028, (323) 465-0110.

No entry fee at the door - only a $10 fee for the club give-away package. There will be a slide show, DJs/Music and lots of libations.

For more info, go to their website:


What's up Everyone...The Super Series Continues Volume 2 for 2009...Super Sunday is scheduled for June 28th, 2009...

Same Meeting Location...The Hat, Temple City, 5505 Rosemead Blvd., Temple City, CA 91780.

The Time: 8:30 a.m, leaving at 9:15 a.m

The Destination: ALWAYS unknown

Expectant Fun Rating: 10+

Get your bikes Ready for a Great Season to come!

Long Beach, CA

A sound spread on Pine Avenue so funk-tastic, you’d be inert to miss it — that, and you couldn’t witness a scooter rally with FREE scooter parking and bike valet!

DJ Dennis Owens of The Good Foot spins 60s selects, The New Fidelity brings mod pop power, Boogaloo Assassins play a Latin-salsa-soul mix, followed by two sweets from Jack Johnson’s Brushfire Records label: ALO (Animal Liberation Orchetra) and Money Mark, the sound machine Cuban-fusion keyboardist who put the Beastie Boys back on the map in the 90s.

Intersection of Pine & Broadway Ave., in downtown Long Beach. Part of the City of Long Beach's Summer and Music program. See the website for details.

North Hollywood, CA

We are going to get a group going to ride up to Amerivespa in Los Gatos, CA. We will meet at NoHo Scooters at 9 AM on Wednesday July 1st. Ride will leave at 10 AM sharp. The ride up will be 125 friendly, but we must do some freeway on the way back due to the extra time it would take to ride highway 1 back. My wife will be driving the backup truck with trailer, so there will be room for some smaller bikes.

The days ride will have us stopping at Vespa Santa Barbara before riding up to San Luis Obispo for the night. We will be staying at the Travelodge at 345 Marsh St in SLO. We will rise early and ride up to the coast through Big Sur and Carmel on highway 1.

We will group up whereever the Sunday (July 5th) ride ends up, and head back to SLO down on 101 (150cc and above only). We will stay at the same Travelodge. This will be for freeway legal bikes only. The following morning we will ride back to NoHo.

A few rules.
-If your bike is not running right, don't try to bring it on the ride. We don't to fill all the space in the backup truck with scooters that should not be there.

-This ride is open to all scooters that can maintain 60-65 MPH on flat ground. We don't want to wait for those who choose to ride slow.

-This ride is open to modern and vintage scooters 125cc and above that can maintain 60-65 MPH. No whiners allowed.

-Bring proper riding gear. This includes something to keep you warm. It can get cold along the coast and in the Bay Area.

-Bring money for food, gas, hotel, etc. Don't be a mooch.

-Make sure your scoot is legal. This means current tags, registration, and working lights. We dont want to attract the police.

-Maintain a pack while on the freeway.

Please contact me if interested.
Mike Frankovich
NoHo Scooters, 818-761-3647.

Torrance, CA


Meet - TBD
Moto Amore, 448 E. Santa Clara Street (& 10th Street), San Jose CA 95112, Phone: (408) 295-3004

Breakfast will be provided. Registration will also be available. Early Bird Ride to Mount Hamilton Ride. Departs @ - TBD

There will be two rides available with varying ride distances: Beginner and Advanced.

Meet & Greet - Agenda Lounge, 399 S. 1st Street, San Jose CA 95113, Phone: (408) 287-3991. Meet @ - TBD. Bands. DJ. Music. Registration will be available.

Come-out and meet your your fellow scooterists and other local DJs, as we kick-off AmeriVespa 2009 by spinning scooter tunes.

Scoot! Magazine will also be holding a Raffle for a scooter and other fun scooter schwag!

Meet @ - TBD. Los Gatos Lodge, 50 Los Gatos Saratoga Road, Los Gatos CA 95032, Phone: (408) 354-3300

Breakfast and Registration will be available. San Juan Bautista (Long Ride). Ride Departs @ 8:30AM

Vespa Club Los Gatos will lead a main ride to San Juan Bautista, a long ride through the valley not to be missed! A brown bag lunch will be provided in San Juan Bautista.

Various other rides will also be available; details TBD

Vespa Club of America - Annual Meeting. Meet @ 6pm. Location - TBD

Scooter Music Night - Hosted by Secret Society SC
American Legion Hall, 1344 Dell Avenue, Campbell CA 95008, Phone: (408) 379-6420, Music starts @ 8p/9p

Come out and to various DJs and bands, as they spin and play scooter friendly music into the night!

Scoot! Magazine will be holding a Raffle for a scooter and other fun scooter schwag!

Meet @ - TBD. Los Gatos Lodge. Breakfast and Registration will be available. Ride Departs @ 10AM

Vespa Club Los Gatos will lead the ride through some of the best twisties and backroads we know! This ride is not to be missed!

Saturday Day Show: Saratoga Springs, 22801 Big Basin Way, Saratoga CA 95070 408. Phone: (408) 867-3016. Visitor Entrance @ 11AM. Events start @ 12PM

Vendors! Lunch BBQ provided! Gymkhana! Slow Race! Drag Race! Miss Vespa USA Contest! Scooter Build-Off! Workshops! MSF Tutorial!

Dinner @ TBD
Concourse Awards with Evening Activities.
Scoot! Magazine will be holding a Raffle for a scooter and other fun scooter schwag! A ride will be led to a local fireworks display, to celebrate the Fourth of July!

Afterwards, join local scooterists for a Scooter Drive-In Movie at a local venue.

Meet @ TBD Los Gatos Lodge. Breakfast will be available. Ride to the Coast Ride. Departs @ - TBD. Farewell BBQ Lunch Location - TBD

Last Chance Raffle for a scooter and other scooter schwag, held by Scoot! Magazine.

Return ride to San Jose

Meet @ TBD. Cardinal Lounge 3197 Meridian Avenue, San Jose CA 95124 408. Phone: (408) 269-7891
Still in town? Not ready to start your Monday? Meet-up for a late breakfast, with Vespa Club Los Gatos, for one last hurrah and leaded coffee to ease your hang-over.

*** Schedule Is Subject To Change ***
**More details will be posted as they are confirmed.**.

Torrance, CA



Meet at 12:30am at SOUTH BAY VESPA, 18425 HAWTHORNE BLVD., TORRANCE, CA 90504; Ride leaves at 1pm-ish. RAIN CANCELS.

We will be riding out to some of our favorite routes in PV, then ending the ride at one of our old South Bay SC hangouts, UTRO's Bar & Grill in San Pedro. Come ride, grub and check out the two Vespas behind the bar at UTRO's.

Come on out for the longest-running, regular ride in SoCal: the South Bay Scooter Club's Monthly Ride! All scooters welcome.

Santa Monica, CA

WESTSIDE SCOOTER CLUB Presents Scoot Invasion IV– 10 year anniversary rally. “Classic & vintage scooters only” - July 10th -12th 2009

July 10th – Friday – meet and greet coastal -night ride
8:30 meet up @ 90 west Lounge, 12740 Culver Blvd., Ste H, Los Angeles, CA 90066 - (310) 821-4000

9pm ride leave & ends at Cock N Bull for Soul Invasion – Weekender –night #1

July 11th – Saturday – westside’s signature canyone ride

11am meet up @ cock n bull pub, 2947 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90405 - (310) 399-9696

4-6PM: brennans’ pub – happy hour, 4089 Lincoln Blvd., Marina del Rey, CA 90292 - (310) 821-6622

8:30 pm sat night – night ride. meet up @ cock n bull pub, 2947 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90405 - (310) 399-9696
9pm ride leaves & ends at Faisdodo for soul invasion weekender –night #2

july12- Sunday – Beverly hills ride –Reservoir stop
11am meet up @ TOMMYS BURGER, 1900 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90405

Ride ends : Bar Melody, 9132 S Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90045 (entrance in the rear)

3pm- until party ,food, drinks Raffle, Scooter contest and djs , dancing - Scoot Banquet & Soul Weekender – night # 3 closing party


Torrance, CA

Come on out for the longest-running, regular ride in SoCal: the South Bay Scooter Club's Monthly Ride! All scooters welcome.

Meet at 12:30am at Claim Jumper restaurant in Torrance (corner of Lomita and Crenshaw Blvds); Ride leaves at 1pm-ish. RAIN CANCELS.

San Francisco, CA

The much anticipated return of the San Francisco Classic. More information to be posted at:

SWERVE N CURVE "X" (#10) – AUGUST 21-23, 2009
Torrance, CA

Yup, this year will be The BIG "X" --- Swerve N Curve #10!!!
Mark the date on your calendar, NOW, and plan on being there. We are planning on making it the biggest Swerve N Curve EVER!

It’s all about fun and sun by the beaches of south and westside Los Angeles.

Here is a tentative itinerary (subject to change):

7:30pm: “Meet ‘N’ Greet” at TBD.
9pm: Leave for Beach Night Ride #1 in the South Bay
10pm: Return to TBD

11am: Meet at Claim Jumper restaurant, in Torrance (corner of Crenshaw & Lomita Blvd’s)
12noon: Ride leaves for the famous “Swerve N Curve” route around Palos Verdes.

(Westside/”Northern” riders, meet at the Cock N Bull Pub in Santa Monica at 9:30am; Ride leaves at 10:30am to meet the rest of the group at Claim Jumper in Torrance)

We will end the ride at TBD; Rally Packs will be available for sale.

Evening ride/festivities:
8pm: Meet at the Cock N Bull Pub in Santa Monica.

9pm: Ride leaves for Beach Night Ride #2 on the Westside (Special “Canals Ride”” through Venice and the Marina). Italian scooters only for this ride, please.

10pm: Arrive for the SWERVE N CURVE DANCE EXTRAVAGANZA! at BAR MELODY, 9132 Sepulveda Blvd., Westchester, CA 90405, (310) 670-1994. Doors open at 9PM. Those with rally packs get 1/2 off cover of $4. Regular admission $4 before 11pm, $8 afterwards. Ladies FREE before 10:30pm. FULL BAR / All ages. Special DJ’s playing Reggae, Soul, Brit Pop, Ska & Mod all night long for your listening pleasure: Jesse Trejo (WSSC), Jason Lawless (Ram Jam Club), Ted Morris (Ram Jam Club, Trojan Lounge), Kristin Storli (WSSC/Bar Italia), and Sean Needham (WSSC). FREE scooter parking; Rally packs will be available for sale.

11am: Meet at the Cock N Bull Pub in Santa Monica.
12noon: Ride leaves for ride along the beaches in the South Bay.

We will end the ride at TBD

Wheelie contest and scooter awards to follow. Raffle????

Itinerary is subject to change, so please keep checking the South Bay & Westside websites.


FOR MORE INFORMATION, please visit the following websites:

Mario: 310-770-9819 –
Marv: 310-480-6225 –

CONCORDIA 2009 – AUGUST 29, 2009
Long Beach, CA

The Concords have put together another jumping party at DiPiazzas in Long Beach on August 29. Doors open at 7pm, bands go on at 8pm. We have great DJs spinning Ska, Mod, Northern Soul and Reggae. We have four bands lined up: The Commotions, Kingston a Go-Go, The New Fidelity and The Suppressors. $10 cover. 21 and over. During the day The Long Beach Classic Scooter Club will be having their monthly classic scooter only ride which will end at DiPiazzas.

Marina Del Rey, CA

After many years of hiding and requests, the Westside are bringing back the old WSSC Scoot & Que. In year's past, they were at Westside Justin's and Chris Griffith's homes. This time, they are going to have it at a beachfront property in Marina Del Rey, courtesy of Westside Peter. The front yard of the property is the sand. Great location to swim, layout and hang! This is a vintage & classic scooter event only, please. Beach attire suggested. More info to come.

ENDLESS SUMMER #9 – SEPT. 18-20, 2009
Santa Barbara, CA

Endless Summer Rally "Revolution #9", will be on September 18 through 20, 2009.

Friday, Sept. 18th:
5PM - Meet N Greet @ Vespa Santa Barbara. Speedy night time ride. Experienced riders only.

Saturday, Sept. 19th:
9AM - Meet @ Vespa Santa Barbara; Schmooze a little while, buy your rally packs & raffle tickets.
11AM - Ride leaves TBD, followed by a BBQ and some TBD night time fun!

Sunday, Sept. 20th:
10AM - Meet @ Vespa Santa Barbara; Ride & lunch TBD.

Friday, January 23, 2009

The New Vespa GTS 300 is here!

Piaggio Group USA Introduces the New 2009 Vespa GTS 300 Super

Fastest Vespa ever zooms into maxi scooter category with timeless Italian style and craftsmanship

NEW YORK, January 16, 2009 – Italian manufacturer Piaggio, renowned for revolutionary ideas in personal transportation, announces the U.S. debut of the 2009 Vespa GTS 300 Super, the newest evolution of its best-selling mid-size scooter, the GTS 250. Sporting a new high-displacement engine and a collection of racing-inspired components and exterior treatments that complement its high-performance character, the GTS 300 Super has been designed to set pulse points pounding whether in motion or at rest.

As the fastest Vespa in the company’s U.S. product portfolio, the new GTS 300 Super is always ready to stir up excitement. New styling elements that signal its sporty intentions include an eye-catching side grille on the rear engine panel, two-tone alloy wheel rims, a racing red suspension cover on the front spring and a black-rimmed headlight. A new front shield features a stylish chrome air intake, reinforcing its sporty personality and stylish stance.

“The GTS 300 Super doesn’t just stand out in the crowd – it gets you out of the crowd,” says Paolo Timoni, President and CEO of Piaggio Group Americas. “Whether you need to accelerate away from traffic or take advantage of parking spaces that others only dream about fitting in, the GTS 300 Super does it with Vespa’s unique mix of Italian attitude and style.”

Vespas have always been the preferred scooters for those who want to send a message about the importance of personal choice, freedom and authenticity. The company has produced over 17 million scooters since its debut in 1946 and the brand has been immortalized by artists and individualists through the decades.

Nerves of Steel, Born to Perform

Like all Vespa scooters, the GTS 300 Super features the company’s exclusive steel frame design. This unique feature has set Vespa apart from other two wheelers ever since the first model debuted in 1946. By using a steel unibody versus a welded plastic-covered tube frame, every Vespa delivers superior torsional rigidity – up to 250% more than other scooters. The result is a machine that’s not only a thrill to look at, but one that provides exceptional precision in handling and response.

Underneath the tough steel exterior of the GTS 300 Super is a 278cc four-stroke single cylinder, liquid-cooled, electronic injection engine. Boasting a high level of torque and few revolutions per minute, the GTS 300 Super provides peak flexibility and maximum acceleration - making it an exceptional choice for city commuters. The twist-and-go continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) allows smooth and easy operation for hassle-free navigation through even the toughest stop-and-go traffic.

Twelve-inch wheels insure a stable ride over pot-hole scarred streets and double-disc brakes allow riders to stop quickly, with confidence. Like all Vespas, the GTS 300 Super sips fuel. Its carbon footprint is pint-size and it exceeds strict U.S. CARB emission standards. And, while owners save fuel and the environment, the scooter’s slim stance also helps reduce congestion – it will happily share one full-size SUV parking space with six of its scooter siblings.

Despite its streamlined stance, the GTS 300 Super is big on cargo capacity. Plentiful under-seat storage space is sufficient for storing helmets, groceries - you name it! And, a broad range of accessories, such as a rear top case and soft luggage, add to the scooter’s functionality.

The 2009 Vespa GTS 300 Super is available at U.S. Vespa retailers starting in March. Color choices include Shiny Black or Optic White. The manufacturer’s suggested retail price is $6,199.

About The Piaggio Group:

Established in 1884 by Rinaldo Piaggio and based in Pontedera (Pisa, Italy), the Piaggio Group is one of the world’s top manufacturers of two-wheel motor vehicles. With over 7,000 employees, an annual production of more than 708,000 vehicles in 2007, 5 R&D centers, 7 production facilities in Europe and Asia, and operations in over 50 countries, the Piaggio Group has a consolidated leadership in the European two-wheeler market.

The company produces scooters, motorcycles and mopeds in the 50cc to 1,200 cc displacement range, marketed under the Piaggio, Vespa, Gilera, Derbi, Aprilia, Scarabeo and Moto Guzzi brands. The Group also manufactures three- and four-wheel light transportation vehicles for the Ape, Porter and Quargo ranges.

Anne Szczesny
Brandware PR for Piaggio Group Americas
770.649.0880, Ext. 303

Monday, January 12, 2009

Rucksters follow-up

OK, real quick: Manny Del Toro (aka, "goatlover") informed me of an upcoming Rucksters ride that was coming up this past Sunday. So, I hopped on my Vespa Rally 200 and cruised to one of the satellite meeting spots, which was a few blocks from my house, a Starbucks in Lakewood. When I got there, I pulled up next to all the other scooters that were there and was asked if I was riding with them. I said yes, and they explained the reason they asked is because sometimes other scooterists see them and just pull up to talk. I assured them I had come for their ride and they welcomed me. It was a bit awkward, but a few of them came up and started talking to me about my Vespa. I in turn started finding out about their scooters and especially the mods that were available and that they had all done. Quite amazing stuff and very inventive, I might add.

While we in the vintage scooter community take pride in "sleepers" and "racers" that only alter the outward appearance of our scooters a little bit, while tuning the heck out of them internally, these guys took pride in customizing their machines so that they did not look like your typical floor model at all. I found out about kits that can extend the length of a scooter, mountings that let the engine and back wheel assembly move waaay back, in varying degrees. Then there were the wide rim kits for the back tire, engine upgrades, engine swaps, etc. Motorcycle forks, grips, Chines engine cowls, etc. were all freely used. The thing is, the way the Honda Ruckus is built, with basically a steel tubing system that you just attach parts to, you can modify and attach just about anything you want, whether it be LED lights, alarm systems, racks and other accessories, carbon fiber bits and pieces, etc. Some of them even had GPS nav systems wired into their batteries! Reminded me of the original Lambretta models, with the bare frame tubing showing through, except now with modern tech on board.

"1947 Lambretta Model A" above, and new Ruckus below


After meeting at Starbucks, we cruised to the main meeting spot, which was "The Hat" in Rosemead. There, our 11 scooters came together with another 18 or so scooters, and more were joining up as we parked. That's when I got to really see a lot of the customization capabilities of these scooterists and their machines. Some of the riders even told me they had a Vespa or two as well. One had just bought a Lammie from Dean. Another had a P200, and so on. But the scoots they were riding today were all moded out. Check out these pics of some of the mods on these scooters:





To see all the other pics I shot, click here. I couldn't go on the long ride they were planning (my kid was sick @ home and had to get back), so I saw them off as they gassed up and took off for Phillipe's in downtown L.A., then Griffith Park, then the coast and beyond. Sounded like another full day of riding for them. Bet they had fun! Here's a video clip I shot from my digital camera as they took off:

As I said in my last post, we in the vintage community could learn a lot from these guys, as some of them have taken matters into their own hands and are now manufacturing their own accessories for their rides. Why not? Overall, nice group. And, even though I was on another type of scooter, they were very welcoming and invited me back. After seeing their energy and inventive ways they can modify scooters, I probably will be back... Again, why not? What Honest Mike shouted to me at the end of the above video comes to mind: "Riders ride!"