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Thunderstruck hosts its 20th Xtreme Bike Show

Thunderstruck Custom Bikes will rock the block in downtown Medford when it hosts its 20th annual Xtreme Bike Show and Street Party Saturday, Aug. 20. Hundreds of motorcycles from Southern Oregon will be polished and posed along two blocks of Front Street between Fourth and Sixth streets.

“After 20 years, we’re getting pretty good at this,” says Mark Daley, owner of Thunderstruck Custom Bikes. “We only made $800 that first year, but with the help of volunteers, our generous sponsors and the motorcycle community, we have now donated over a quarter of a million dollars to the Jackson County Boys and Girls Club. I think people like the idea that the money goes to help kids right here in the Rogue Valley.”

The show is open to any make or model of motorcycle, and offers a variety of classes for extreme customs, street stock, metric cruisers, vintage bikes, a lady's division and a specialty class for the most unusual. Entry fee is $10 and all proceeds go to the local Boys and Girls Club. Show registration begins at 11 a.m., with judging from 1 to 3 p.m. Trophies will be awarded around 3:30 p.m.

“It’s not just about Harleys or custom bikes,” Daley says. “We welcome all types of motorcycles.”

Food will be provided by Streetside Grill, R&D Sandwich Factory and Uncle Al’s Hot Dogs, or sip a cold one in the beer garden. Hog Wild, a high-energy, five-piece band will provide “rock ‘n’ soul” favorites for dancing and toe-tapping.

“We also have some great raffle prizes and a 50-50 drawing,” Daley adds.

In addition to some of the area’s most beautiful motorcycles, Daley’s own award-winning custom choppers will be on display. There will be classic cars, tricked-out semi trucks from JTD Trucking, Oregon Vintage Motorcycles, and booths representing D&S Harley-Davidson, Boring’s Upholstery, Hansen’s BMW Motorcycles, T&D Trucking and Performance, Sucker Punch Paint, Premier Detail and Polish, and the Combat Hero Bike Build.

Of all the local fundraising and charity events he supports, the one Daley feels most honored to be a part of is the Combat Hero Bike Build, a program designed and managed by veterans.

“I’ve had the good fortune of being able to do a lot of great things to give back to our community, but this is definitely the coolest,” Daley says. “This will be the fourth year I’ve been asked to design a custom-built motorcycle for a combat vet who has lost a limb while serving our country. I have to say, their emotional reactions when they’re presented with these bikes is very moving. You can just see the joy on their faces at being able to get out there and ride again. I love being able to do this for them.”

This year’s recipient is Shaun Meadows, an Air Force veteran from Tennessee who was serving in Afghanistan when an explosive device took both his legs above the knees. Daley turned a 2005 Harley-Davidson Dyna Lowrider into a three-wheeled “trike” and moved the controls to the handlebars in order to alleviate pressure on Meadows’s prosthetic legs.

“We gave it a custom paint job that incorporated a Maltese cross with a skull in the center, which is his unit’s insignia.”

Meadows, his family and the custom-built trike will be on hand the day of the show, along with two Oregon veterans who have been picked as future Combat Hero Bike recipients.

For two decades, Daley, his wife, Betsy, and a dedicated group of supporters have made it possible to donate many thousands of dollars to local children in Jackson County. Daley’s skill as a designer and builder of custom choppers has won him national and international fame, but he has never lost sight of his goal to give something back through his involvement in the Rogue Valley Toy Run, the annual Brittney Ride and many other charitable events.

“I really hope people will come and enjoy the show this year. Even if motorcycles aren’t your thing, it’s a fun party. I think it’s important for everyone in our community when we can come together for a good cause that supports our local kids, and have some fun doing it. There’s a lot to see and do, and I especially hope folks will also show their appreciation for our young veterans who have sacrificed so much for our country.”

Mark Daley of Thunderstruck Custom Bikes turned this 2005 Harley-Davidson Dyna Lowrider into a three-wheeler and moved the controls to the handlebars in order to alleviate pressure on veteran Shaun Meadows' prosthetic legs. Mail Tribune / Jamie Lusch