BMX was a big deal at Gamehaven motocross back in the 1980s.
If one went into the woods at Camp Kahler, southeast of Rochester, from May to October in 1985, they may have received a big surprise. While there was no roar of engines, there was plenty of racing at the Gamehaven motocross track.
Bicycle motocross or BMX racers, from ages 5 to 60, riding anything from home-brewed bikes to $1000 racing machines, were competing on the 930-foot-long dirt track.
Ed Conway, who operated the track for the Gamehaven Council of the Boy Scouts, reported an average of 70 racers a week showing up for the events. Racers were separated by male and female along with age groups and by their skill level – novice, intermediate and expert.
Local racers competed for trophies and points with riders from as far as western Wisconsin, northern Iowa and the Twin Cities on a race circuit that included Rochester, Albert Lea, Fairmont, Mason City and night racing at Austin.
"Lens on History” is a weekly photo feature by Lee Hilgendorf, a volunteer at the History Center of Olmsted County.