A Parryville businessman has announced his retirement, which has given a new comer to the area the opportunity to own his own business.
Dennis Blocker, president and owner of Blocker Enterprises, 770 State Road, Parryville, has announced that the new owner of the Harley-Davidson division of the business is Robert Eggstein, who has named the business Keystone Harley-Davidson.
Blocker started in the business in 1971 with Yamaha, adding Harley-Davidson in 1976. The dealership grew from 3,000 square feet to over a 50,000 square foot state of the art facility in 2005.
Blocker said that he is retiring from the day-to-day running of the business, but intends to operate the Kawasaki and Yamaha dealership. For a time, the Kawasaki and Yamaha business will continue to operate under the same roof, but that is due to change in the near future when Kawasaki and Yamaha will move out and then the present building will house everything Harley-Davidson.
"When you've been running 100 miles an hour - its hard to stop completely," said Blocker. What Blocker intends to do is to become more involved in the community and local charities, such as his church, the community and the hospital.
After 40 years, Blocker said that he has seen a lot and learned a lot, but most of all has come to appreciate his family and his employees. Eggstein has agreed to retain employees and plans to hire more as the need arises.
At 63 years old, Blocker said that he has 40 years of business experience to share with the community.
"I know that in many businesses its 30 years and out," he laughed. Blocker has come by a strong work ethic through his family. His father is 86 years old and still stops by the business to help take out the garbage.
The Harley-Davidson location has become a destination location in Carbon County. Bikers from throughout the country stop by this location to purchase their custom bikes or have repairs done. The store carries custom Harley-Davidson items, clothing, boots, sunglasses, accessories and must have collector items, but for Blocker the thought of having some free time to spend with his family was the greater lure.
This gave Eggstein the perfect opportunity to become the new owner of the Harley-Davidson location.
Eggstein grew up in upstate New York and then moved to New Jersey where he has lived for the past 25 years, commuting to New York City where he worked in investments, commercial loans and real estate, socking away his savings until he felt the urge to own his own business. He is still in the midst of raising his family and enjoys riding his motorcycle in his free time.
As he searched for the perfect location, he found Blocker's Enterprises and after bringing his family to the area to visit, he struck a deal that met everyone's needs.
"I've been riding for the past six years," said Eggstein. "I looked in several locations, including Florida and New Jersey, but I kept looking until I found out that Denny was thinking of selling in August 2010."
He brought his wife to the area and she fell in love with the mountains. She had grown up in the foothills of State College and felt she was home.
"This is the foothills of the Poconos," said Eggstein, which is how he came up with the name of the business. "It's a great place to visit and ride a bike. The mountain scenery is perfect for biking."
Eggstein has a few ideas to grow his business, which he hopes to implement soon. He plans to offer rental bikes to boost tourism in the area.
"People who visit the area by plane can't bring their bike, but they may want to ride," said Eggstein. "I want to be ready with inventory to offer. Harley-Davidson is a product that translates to fun and I believe this will be a good opportunity to build my business."
Eggstein said the "Fly and Ride" program is a nationwide program that began in Europe and has found roots all across America.
"Airports are close by in New York, New Jersey and Philadelphia," said Eggstein. "People will love to ride in the mountains and see the lakes will come to Pennsylvania. Motorcycles just aren't practical in the city."
Since May 2, 2011 when Eggstein took over, he has been busy gaining more knowledge about the motorcycle business and welcomes suggestions.
"We are also offering the Motorcycle Safety Program, which is free for people to learn the basics of riding a motorcycle," said Eggstein. "Thousands of people have taken the course and have learned to love to ride."
The 15 hours of classes are suitable for both beginners and intermediate/advanced riders. Students are supplied with a motorcycle and helmet to use during the course. Students who successfully complete the course will be issued a motorcycle license. There is also an Experienced Rider Course, which is a one day course designed for riders who already possess a motorcycle license. For more information about the course, see the website at www.pamsp.com or call 1-800-845-9533.
Until the two business separate, they will be sharing events.
Keystone Harley-Davidson is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Thursday; 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday; and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday. Call (610) 379-4055 or see the website at www.keystonehd.com.