Hey it's Laughlin, and you do what you have to do.
At this year's River Run (the 37th consecutive year), everyone seemed to be talking about how much the attendance was down, why Harley Davidson didn't bother to show up, and rumors about the 2019 edition being the final year for the River Run. The event has been promoted since 1993 by a California corporation called Dal Con Promotions.
Rumor has it Dal Con has decided to pull out of Laughlin. We did however see these flyers circulating over the weekend:
Reasons we heard over the weekend as to why attendance is down:
(1) Price gouging by the hotels. A river view balcony room at the Colorado Belle normally goes for $119 a night on weekends. This rate doubles during the River Run. Here's a quote from a 2019 River Run participant:
It's simple price gouging $300 a night, 3 night minimum stay any other time the hotel rooms are $29 to $49. I can't remember the last time I saw big-name entertainment. Can't remember the last time I saw vendors that didn't get their prices doubled for their spaces. The greedy people here in Arizona that drove most of the vendors away and won't pay for the big names to come in. That's what killed the rally.
(2) Increased police presence. For the Run, Las Vegas sends a small army of cops to keep the peace. Mostly just annoying and clogging up South Casino Drive with their vehicles and horses. Also sitting in front of hotels with their lights flashing for no apparent reason. Here's a quote from another participant:
This year, the cops were in more force than I've ever seen. My ol' lady works security at the Riverside casino and she told me the same thing. I've been going to this event for years and watched it go down hill in the last 4 years. The cops pull over people for no reason. They are bringing metro from Vegas now and are harassing people on foot.
It's become so g rated you might as well be at Disney World.
(3) Complaints that The Run today is "less of everything." For example: fewer vendors, not enough bands/entertainment, clubs closing earlier, etc. One thing we really missed this year was the outdoor stage on the patio behind the Colorado Belle. The patio is right on the river walk and has a nice view to the east. The music would start in the late afternoon and go until late in the evening. This year an eerie silence replaced the festive atmosphere of past years. The patio bands had been relocated to the large white tent out in the hotel parking lot, where the temperature on the asphalt was somewhere around Mars.
You know what makes this Country great, you have the choice to do whatever you want to do. So either go or don’t go, it’s a CHOICE for one to have fun or NOT. So quit your fucking crying!!! quote from 2019 River Run participant
But, now I am alone. And, I do not care. I head off across the desert alone. All I care is that I am finally out of El Lay. And, like Byron in the desert, for an hour or two, “I might forget the human race . . ." quote from Donald Charles Davis
Update June 2019 - we made our Colorado Belle reservations for next year. The balcony room rates are around $50 a night less. Still too expensive, but oh well . . . some things you're just willing to overpay.
No biker deserves to be bored . . .