Archive for the ‘Club News’ Category

Sqooterheads are now on Facebook!

Posted: August 14, 2011 in Club News

The San Diego Sqooterheads Scooter Club now has its own Facebook Group, making it easier for members to stay in touch, learn about upcoming rides and post, view and comment on photos and pictures from our awesome rides. This web site will remain for historical purposes, but most of the action will be taking place over on the club’s Facebook Group page. And where is that, you ask?  Just click on the little scooter guy to the left, or on this link:


By Sqooterhead Steve

This is my 1984 Vespa PK 125S Automatica. It’s a rare Vespa model never imported by Piaggio into the United States but sold only in Europe. It is notable for being the first Vespa scooter ever to have an automatic transmission. Since I do not know how to drive a manual-shift Vespa very well, and yet I wanted an older classic Vespa, I researched and discovered that this model existed. Fellow Sqooterhead Tony alerted me to a Craigslist post back in January for a guy in San Diego selling this scooter. Soon after I was the proud owner. After some fixing up and a thorough carb cleaning, yesterday I rode the scooter for the very first time. It was a blast.

I wanted to know the story behind this unique Vespa, so I posted pictures of it on a few scooter bulletin boards online. Someone recognized it as being brought over to the U.S. in the late 80’s by a Gabriel Sanchez, former owner of Monarch Scooters in Pasadena.

A quick Google search revealed that Gabriel is currently serving out a long sentence related to charity fraud charges in the Lompoc Federal Penitentiary. When he began his sentence over 10 years ago, his wife had just given birth to their first child, a daughter. His release date is set for the end of 2016.

I never knew Gabriel personally so I won’t pass judgement on his sentence, but I did manage to contact him through the federal prisoner mail system. I sent him a letter, with pictures, explaining I had purchased a scooter he used to own and my desire to know more about its history. A couple weeks later, back in February, he sent me one of the most amazing letters I have ever received … about not just the unique Vespa I now owned, but also about the love of scootering in general. I asked if I could share his letter here, and he said sure.

Here is Gabriel’s letter to me:

I continue to communicate with Gabriel, now via email, and share with him updates as I get the Vespa looking nicer and nicer. I am also trying to talk my fellow Sqooterheads into making a special scooter ride this summer up to Lompoc to visit a certain Federal inmate currently staying there. By the way, I’ve named my Vespa PK ‘Ramone’. If you read the above letter carefully, you’ll see why.

Mods VS Rockers Weekend!

Posted: January 27, 2011 in Club News, Upcoming Rides

Hey Sqooterheads, this weekend is one not be missed in the annals of San Diego scooterdom. It’s the 10th annual Mods VS Rockers Weekend! Our friends at the San Diego Scooter Squadron have a handy list of all the action. Click the links below for all the details.:

  • Friday, January 28, 6:00 PM: Quadrophenia Showing at The Shakedown Bar in Point Loma, San Diego, CA, 92110. Featuring Mods VS Rockers music, art show and Quadrophenia showing.

  • Saturday, January 29, 6:00 PM: Mods VS Rockers Meet and Greet at RIVIERA CLUB in La Mesa, CA, 91941. Hey! Hey! Everyone is welcome to the Mods and Rockers meet and greet, come on out and enjoy an evening of music and fun. Meet and greet is at the Riviera Supper Club, 7777 University Ave. in La Mesa.

  • Sunday, January 30, 9:30 AM: Mods VS Rockers Ride. Plans have been set and routes formulated for the Mods VS Rockers 10. The modern scooters (like our Buddies and Steve K.’s Chinese scoot) will meet at Einstein Bros. Bagels, 10460 Friars Rd. across from the Kaiser hospital near the intersection of Mission Gorge Road and Friars Road. Other styles of scooters and motorcycles will take different routes, but all will converge at the end for vintage scooter and motorcycle displays, food and fun.
    At least a couple Sqooterheads are going. Hope we all can make at least some of these fun events.
  • The newly formed San Diogo Sqooterheads scooter club was recently added to the nationwide directory of scooter clubs maintained by the popular scootering Web site,  The listing appears in the “Links” section of at: announced the addition of Sqooterheads with this statement at the top of the Links section:

    707 links listed, newest link: San Diego Sqooterheads – San Diego’s All-Inclusive Queer Scooter Club

    Congratulations Sqooterheads on this new national exposure!