Was the 2020 Myrtle Beach Bike Week canceled due to COVID-19?
The Myrtle Beach area has three motorcycle rallies every year – a Harley Davidson rally in the Spring, another one in the Fall, and the Atlantic Beach Bike Fest which usually coincides with Memorial Day weekend.
Due to COVID-19 and the SC governor’s “work or home” Order, the Atlantic Beach Bikefest, originally scheduled for May 22-25, has been postponed until Labor Day Weekend in September. Although county officials intended to combine the Spring and Fall Harley Davidson rallies into one event in October 2020, County Council has now approved a second Harley Davidson rally that may take place this July.
Was the Myrtle Beach Harley Davidson Rally Canceled Due to COVID-19?
The Harley Davidson rallies have not been canceled, but the Spring Rally has been rescheduled. Although county officials at first thought the two rallies would be combined into one Fall rally in October, Horry County Council voted last week to approve July 13 as the date for a “special” Harley Davidson rally his summer:
Motorcyclists wanting to hold a special summer bike rally will not face opposition from Horry County Council.
Council voted 11-1 on Tuesday to make the week of July 13 the sanctioned date for a special Harley Davidson rally.
Can Horry County cancel the motorcycle rally in the first place? Not exactly, but they do have the power to deny event and vendor permits:
Horry County never had the authority to deny bikers’ access to the county, but Tuesday’s vote means Horry County government will issue event and vendor permits to businesses that week for the rally.
Should Horry County allow a motorcycle rally during a pandemic? It’s the same argument that’s playing out across the nation – should we follow the recommendations of infectious disease experts and minimize the deaths caused by COVID-19? Or should we reopen businesses and let the disease run its course – resulting in more deaths as well as much-needed income for local business owners who are hurting financially?
At least in Horry County, where the council members are also business owners, reopening is going to win the day:
“I have had lengthy conversations with Myrtle Beach Harley-Davidson,” Horry County Council Member […] said. “Our businesses are hurting, gentlemen. We need every potato in the pot to help our businesses…”
A key reason the two rallies will be allowed is with hope that they will make up for the lost revenue many business owners face from shutting down for over a month.
In addition, Council Member […] said he doesn’t think the July bike rally will be as large as a normal spring or fall rally. He said his hotel’s future bookings are down 50 percent.
“We’ve got to get business back before we get taxes back,” […] said. “We won’t get it flowing again until we get folks back into Myrtle Beach.”
What about Atlantic Beach Bikefest? Will they also get a special coronavirus-edition summer rally this year?
Was the Atlantic Beach Bikefest Canceled Due to COVID-19?
Atlantic Beach Bikefest has been postponed until Labor Day weekend (September), and there will not be a summer rally. Furthermore, Atlantic Beach City Council says that they will “monitor the virus” and make a final decision in September as to whether the event should be postponed again:
Atlantic Beach Bikefest will come to a screeching halt as the coronavirus continues to spread throughout Horry County.
The annual event, also known as Black Bike Week, is now postponed to Labor Day weekend. Each year, thousands of bikers spend their Memorial Day weekend partying and riding along the Grand Strand. Bikefest was originally scheduled for May 22-25.
Atlantic Beach Town Council met Monday afternoon to discuss the event and voted unanimously to postpone it. Councilman […] said they’ll continue to monitor the virus when September comes around and determine if the event should still go on.
Should there be motorcycle rallies at all this year, given the potential danger for the spread of COVID-19 as motorcyclists travel from around the nation, participate in crowded events with other motorcyclists from around the nation before returning to their homes?
The medical experts have been and are still clear: lifting social distancing restrictions, allowing crowded events, and reopening businesses too soon will result in unnecessary deaths.
On the other hand, tourism and events like the Harley Davidson and Atlantic Beach bike rallies are the lifeblood of the Myrtle Beach area – if people are not renting hotel rooms, eating in restaurants, and spending money in local establishments, more and more businesses will be forced to close their doors.
At Axelrod and Associates, we understand the importance of the Grand Strand’s bike rallies, both to the local economy and to the motorcyclists who live to ride… when the bike rallies happen, whether it is in the Spring, Summer, or Fall, bikers are welcome and you will have our full support.
If you are hurt due to someone else’s carelessness in a motorcycle crash during Myrtle Beach Bike Week 2020, you will need an experienced motorcycle crash attorney on your case immediately. Your SC motorcycle accident lawyer at Axelrod and Associates will help you to hold the at-fault driver accountable and collect full compensation from their insurance company.