‘We’re expecting a bigger crowd this year, we’re hoping to get about 1,500 bikes’
Annual bike rally opens today in Membertou.
Membertou will be filled with the sound of revving engines today as the 2017 Cape Breton Bike Rally gets underway.
It’s the second year the event has been held in Membertou and one of the event’s organizers, Kerry MacLellan, said moving the rally to Membertou was a great choice.
“The change of venue is probably the best decision we’ve ever made. Coming to Membertou, we’ve had an increase in people arriving and in vendors over our previous site in downtown Sydney — which wasn’t working for us,” said MacLellan.
The weekend will be jampacked with events, ranging from guided bike tours around the Cabot Trail, a pig roast and a motorcycle stunt show.
MacLellan said the M&M motorcycle freestyle stunt show can impress even the most experienced riders, including himself.
“They put on a heck of a show. It’s phenomenal what they can do with these bikes. I’ve been biking since I was 16 years old and I’d be afraid to do what some of these guys do,” said MacLellan.
MacLellan said this year’s rally is expected to draw larger crowds than last year.
“We’re expecting a bigger crowd this year, we’re hoping to get about 1,500 bikes, we had about 1,000 last year who registered with our registration desk.”
The Cape Breton Bike Rally has a core group of organizers who are all riders and understand what exactly makes a good rally, but to pull off such a big event it takes a lot of volunteers said MacLellan.
“We probably have 60 volunteers, who aren’t all bikers, they come from all walks of life and all different communities
in the areas,” said MacLellan “We even have one guy who lives in Ontario, who’s originally from Cape Breton but comes down every year to volunteer,” said MacLellan.
The rally is scheduled to run from Friday until Monday, where the event will sign off with a farewell ride to the Canso Causeway at 11 a.m.
From left, organizers, Lloyd Sheppard, David Campbell, Ken Markotjohn, Greg Whyte, Mike Basso and Kerry MacLellan get ready to set up for the 2017 Cape Breton Bike Rally on Thursday.