MILLINOCKET, Maine — Fans of the “American Loggers” television show Dana Barnett and his girlfriend, Deb Gorman, had no problem riding their Harley-Davidson motorcycles about 135 miles to Pelletier Loggers Family Restaurant Bar and Grill for the Millinocket Bikers Weekend.
“It’s our third time up here,” Gorman said Saturday. “Our last time here they told us they were going to do this, and we knew we would be going. We like the Pelletiers. They are really nice, down-to-earth people. The family is great.”
Restaurant co-owner and “American Loggers” co-star Eldon Pelletier said the Somerville couple is among the many kinds of people he loves to see come to downtown Millinocket for the bikers weekend — out-of-towners who otherwise might never visit.
“We love to ride, and we want people to come to town and have a good time,” Pelletier said Saturday. “We want to see what we can do to bring more business here.”
The stars of the Discovery Channel television show organized and led runs from the restaurant through the area, drawing many French-Canadian logging pals as well as southern Mainers for the weekend event.
Live music, dancing, sidewalk sales and a NASCAR racing car sponsored by the Pelletiers were among the features of the event, which was intended to be a smaller sequel to last year’s Maine State H.O.G. Rally.
The H.O.G. rally drew rave reviews and 744 registered Maine State Harley Owners Group members out of more than 1,000 attendees. It attracted double the number that came to the 2008 Maine State Harley Owners’ Group rally in Westbrook.
Sarah Gibson, the Pelletier family’s marketing and publicity director, said the weekend was a good start, something the family probably would like to do annually.
Gibson said the event was organized rather quickly and timed to coincide with a Donald V. Henry American Legion Post 80 Riders club motorcycle run that raised money for the Adopt A Soldier program and Knights of Columbus and Northern Timber Cruisers cookouts.
She said she would like to see next year’s event put together sooner, with a solid list of events and more involvement from downtown businesses.