It’s time for Western Canada’s premiere motorcycle event — the Tsawwassen Classic & Vintage Motorcycle Swap Meet and Show N’ Shine. Held annually at the South Delta Recreation Centre in Tsawwassen, B.C., this year’s show is scheduled to run Sunday, April 17. Doors open at 10 a.m.
Event organizer Todd Copan and his family are celebrating 26 successful years with the event, which started in 1986, and since the second meet it has been held in the same location. It started off small but has grown to fill the 25,000 sq. ft. venue — a hockey arena and a curling arena with six sheets of ice. There are 160 booths/tables in two buildings.
Vintage and classic motorcycle parts are the focus of the swap meet, but Copan has several other activities taking place, including a Japanese-only hall where anything from the big-four manufacturers – new or old – can be found. He also sets apart an area especially for his show and shine, and every year Copan determines a theme. For example, in 2011, Copan is celebrating all special and hybrid motorcycles, especially the Triton.
There have been some relatively obscure feature machines on display here, including an incredibly rare 1941 Harley-Davidson prototype OHV 45 cubic inch motorcycle. Harley didn’t produce an OHV 45” (750cc) motor until the Sportster in 1957. There have been Crockers, Vincents, Brough Superiors – even Max Lambky’s streamlined twin-engined Vincent that runs at Bonneville.
Some say the most enjoyable part of the Tsawwassen swap meet is the impromptu show that takes place in the parking lot. Literally hundreds of motorcycles converge on the asphalt and the display can sometimes be just as entertaining as what is inside the hall. You’ll want to go in though, if not for the motorcycles, then for the opportunity to win a copy of the Seventh Edition reprint of Modern Motorcycle Mechanics and the book about that book, Prairie Dust, Motorcycles and a Typewriter. Good luck!