Bill McCarthy developed an interest in speed, so he began racing go-carts in the early 1960s. Although McCarthy Yamaha Inc. was just a dream in Bill's mind, don't forget, Bill was racing go-carts and his wife Janet loved it.
Bill McCarthy also inherited his father's sense of adventure and wanted a business of his own. So after months of negotiations and hard work, Bill and his wife Janet opened a small shop in Bryan on March 5, 1976. In 1976 Yamaha's largest motorcycle had been a 750cc, but the most popular was the XS650. The economy was just recovering and Yamaha wanted to reduce its inventory so they lowered their prices. For example: XS650 sold for $1695, the DT175 for $595, and the RD125 for $395.
While exclusively offering Yamaha products upon opening in 1976, McCarthy's has upgraded its product line over the years along with some personnel changes. The initial crew included Bill, Janet, their son Tim on part-time duties, Bob Psurny (whose son Scott is presently our service manager), Dale Stoner, and Sonny Long. Sonny was with the business until 2007.
After a few years, the McCarthys noticed their business was growing. Another store was opened in Napoleon, OH, on Glenwood Ave. in 1978 with the Bryan store still fully functional. Along with the new store, the Suzuki line was also added to the product line. Another big highlight in 1978 for McCarthy's was the "Blizzard of '78", when over 200 snowmobiles were sold.
With business still booming, Janet and Bill decided to open an additional store in Defiance on Kiser Rd., making a total of three stores in 1983. Kawasaki was then added to the product line to complement Yamaha and Suzuki, which were already present.
After considering the need for more space, Bill and Janet decided to close the Napoleon store in 1984 and close the Defiance store on Kiser Rd. in 1985. They subsequently combined the two into a bigger and better store in Defiance on SR 66 N, which serves as the present location. With this move, McCarthy's was finally able to add Honda to their line of products. At this time, the Bryan store was still active but followed suite and was closed in 1989, making SR 66 N the one and only location. Also in 1989, Suzuki was dropped as a product offered by McCarthy's but added Bombardier watercraft products the same year.
After 13 years of operation, Bill McCarthy, McCarthy's founder, became inactive in the business due to a tragic industrial accident. The business went on with Janet as president of the corporation and Tim as general manager.
As the years went by, McCarthys decided to drop Bombardier in 2002 while adding KYMCO in 2006. As of today McCarthy's carries Honda, Yamaha, and Kawasaki, offering products such as ATVs, scooters, on- and off-road motorcycles, watercraft, utility vehicles, and generators.
Highlights to the many events throughout the McCarthy family history are the three generations of racers. Bill McCarthy first started racing go-carts in the 1960s. His son, Tim, followed in his footsteps and raced "Quads" for a short time in the 1980s. Following his racing days, Tim passed the thrill onto his sons Nick and Zack, who are highly involved in MX motorcross racing. Nick started racing in 1996 at age five and Zack followed three years later, starting in 1999. Both of them still love to ride and are quite good at it, having received several accolades, including many first-place awards.