Motorbike enthusiasts from all over the country have made their way to Daytona Beach in Florida as the city’s annual Biketoberfest kicked off on Thursday.
Biketoberfest is a collection of activities that take place at venues and businesses all throughout Daytona Beach and Volusia County. Festivities began as early as Wednesday night, with dozens of motorcycle riders making their way down Main Street.
Robert Burnetti, general manager of The Shores Resort and Spa, told Spectrum News that the sounds of the revving motorcycle engines were like music to his ears.
“There’s already bikes rolling into town,” he said. “I am getting the feeling that it is still going to be a pretty busy weekend.”
Former NASCAR driver Kenny Wallace tweeted out a video from Daytona Beach earlier today.
The self-proclaimed “World’s Most Famous Beach” has announced that hotels, restaurants, bars, shops and other businesses are open. However, the city has asked all visitors that decide to make the trip to visit responsibly.
The four-day event, which ends Sunday, typically sees more than 100,000 bikers make their way to Daytona Beach.
However, the annual rally, which normally adds $16 million to the local economy, is going to operate a little differently than it has in years past. The city has put measures put in place to help combat the coronavirus pandemic.
While businesses and restaurants can still fill up to full capacity, the city voted not to allow any event permits for the duration of Biketoberfest. This means the usual gathering of tents, outdoor bars, street vendors, and live outdoor music won’t be there this year.
In contrast, Volusia County voted to allow such permits elsewhere throughout the county for areas not governed by a city.
Daytona Police have strongly encouraged attendees to wear masks and continue social distancing protocols. They released a statement saying “We wish those who attend the upcoming events have a good time and take proper safety precautions.” The department cautioned “the virus is no joke. We hope that everyone takes this seriously.”