FLINT TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Today Vehicle City Harley-Davidson is a successful 35,000 sq. ft. dealership, but before long it will be a community destination with a demo track for dirtbikes and ATVs, a 1950s diner and a bandshell with lawn seating.
“Having the music, having the diner, Flint needs that,” said Nikole Fox, the dealer’s marketing and advertising rep. “There’s a lot going on in Flint and there is more and more coming all the time. We want to be one of the places to give that to Flint.”
Owners Terry, Larry, Jerry and Gary Gregoricka last October bought a former car lot adjacent to the dealership for the expansion and to achieve better access to the existing store. Plot plans on display behind the reception desk show customers what’s in store for the recently expanded property, and photos on the dealer’s Facebook page let them keep up with developments -- like the vintage diner that was delivered in two sections by truck and set on its new foundation May 10 (see photo below).
“We will have a lot of events going on. The whole area itself is basically an event,” Fox said. “The goal is to make it a premier destination for riders and a place for the community.”
The diner, brought in from Minnesota, doesn’t yet have a name or a menu. Construction on its basement began a few weeks ago, Fox said. But the basement was ready in time for the new addition, which sports a black-and-white checkerboard floor and a ‘50s diner style meant to evoke a link to the H-D’s history and staying power.
The owners plan to manage it themselves along with the dealership once the new complex opens next spring, rather than lease to a restaurant tenant.
The dealership already hosts local bands on summer nights, but a new bandshell with grass seating area will create more opportunities to offer free music and other entertainment, Fox said, adding, “Who knows what else we might come up with?”
Plans also include a demo track for ATV and dirtbike riders, built around a pond. Riders will be allowed to use the track, and waiting customers will have something to watch.
“A lot of people come and may have to wait on something. They can go out and listen to music or see what’s going on on the track,” Fox said. “Vehicle City Harley-Davidson is a beautiful facility. We want to open it up more to the community. People can bring their families and spend part of their day here.”