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,….xo ,,,”0500.RA, , y04, ERWORD I BY MELISSA DEL BOSQUE PHOTOS BY ALAN POGUE Beverly’s Lives! 0 utside, the blinking marquee is simple and direct: “Beer.” Inside, the bass notes of Jimi Hendrix’s “Highway Chile” mark the tempo for two women decked out in leather chaps as they do a bump and grind in front of the jukebox. Smoke-encrusted photographs of bikerssome dearly departed, others still marauding the highwaysline the tilting walls. Christmas lights lend a festive touch and biker graffiti on the ceiling proclaims the ultimate biker insult: “Tony rides a Jap bike?’ Welcome to Beverly’s, the kind of place where guys with names like Big Bear and Terrible Terry wear leather vests emblazoned with names of biker clubs like the Bandidos, or Latin Steel. They swoop in like Vikings on their thundering hogs pockmarked with bumper stickers. \(“My money and my kids go to the Texas Correctional InstiFor 25 years the Austin biker bar has been flouting the law. But sooner or later even a tough old bird like Beverly’s has to confront the city’s explosive growth and the law of money. Early this year the word was out that the venera ble bar on South Congress was slated to become another PetsMart or Wal-Mart. “The landlord’s getting old; he’s got children,” said Beverly Ray, the proprietor who lent her name and personality to the bar for a quarter century. “If they get a good price they’ll sell it,” she told me when we spoke last February. “I hate to leave. But it’s a tough business. You come and you go. You should know it when you get into this business.” After hearing that still another bit of Austin history was about to fade away forever, I decided to check out Beverly’s and see what the fuss was all about. 28 THE TEXAS OBSERVER APRIL 29, 2005