Harley-Davidson in Erie Cancels 2022 Bikefest Over Staff Shortages, Product Delays

by Amy Myers

The effect of staffing shortages and product delays doesn’t just end in grocery store aisles. Because of these conditions, Harley-Davidson has had to cancel the 2022 Erie Bikefest.

What to Know

  • Harley-Davidson holds yearly Bikefest in Erie, Pa.
  • Second year in a row HD canceled the festival
  • No rescheduled date for the event as of now

Initially, the event would have taken place in Erie, Pennsylvania from July 14 to July 19. Bikefest is a free weeklong event that features sponsors and vendors like Miller Lite and Allegheny Beverage Co. Harley-Davidson first hosted the event in 2013. Since then, the event has been a pivotal part of the Pennsylvania town, donating its proceeds to several well-deserving nonprofits.

Unfortunately, though, without the proper personnel and products to substantiate the well-loved festival, Harley Davidson wasn’t even able to postpone this year’s Bikefest to another date.

This is the second year in a row that Harley-Davidson had to call off the Erie Bikefest, much to the dismay of festival-goers. However, unlike this year, the reason behind the 2021 Bikefest cancellation wasn’t because of the job market or inflation.

Why Harley-Davidson Also Had to Cancel Last Year’s Bikefest

Instead, Harley-Davidson had to call off the Bikefest because of Covid. The company had to adhere to state regulations put in place to slow the spread.

On the company’s official website, Harley-Davidson released an official statement.

“After discussions with the Erie County Health Department and Erie-Western PA Port Authority concerning COVID-19 pandemic occupancy limits, as well as social distancing and face covering requirements, we have made the difficult decision to cancel our annual motorcycle rally scheduled for July 13-18, 2021,” Harley Davidson shared. “Although Governor Wolf’s announcement earlier this week to increase occupancy limits was very encouraging, we have determined that compliance with COVID-19 restrictions still prevent us from presenting the event at the same level and high standard that thousands of attendees have experienced and enjoyed at our event in previous years.”

The statement continued, “While we understand many people will be disappointed by this announcement, we want everyone to know that we remain 100% committed to bringing Erie Bikefest back to our community-when it is possible to do so without any occupancy limits and social distancing requirements. Until then, we thank you for your understanding and continued support.”

This year’s Bikefest thankfully didn’t fall victim to a public health concern. However, it is worrisome to Harley Davidson wasn’t able to keep the 2022 festival alive. Hopefully, the company will be able to find a date in the future when they have plenty of workers and supplies, but for now, Erie residents and travelers will have to hope that next year’s Bikefest goes off without a hitch.