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Ready to rally
8/29/2008 By: Melanie Mazur
The rumbling has begun.
But thatís OK with local volunteers and business people as the third year of Ignacio Bike Week begins.
Bike Week Chair Ann Mooney said Ignacio Bike Week, which is operated by the Ignacio Chamber of Commerce, is different from past rallies. Bike Week was an almost impromptu effort that started in 2006 when Rally in the Rockies organizer Dan Bradshaw pulled his for-profit rally out of Ignacio in May.
Chamber volunteers suspected bikers would show up anyway after years of attending the Four Corners Motorcycle Rally, and scrambled to organize events. Last year was the first time the chamber had a full year to plan the rally, and an estimated 20,000 people attended the rally on Saturday of Labor Day weekend.
"The town has been very supportive," Mooney said. Sponsorships from local businesses allow the chamber to put the proceeds from the rally back into community efforts, including scholarships and donations to students.
All of the events and entertainment in the beer tent is free in downtown Ignacio. An event schedule is on Page 12 of the Pine River Times newspaper.
On Friday, Sky Ute Casino will feature a battle of the bands, and the winner of that event will open up for the casino's headliner concert on Saturday, featuring Three Dog Night and the Little River Band.
Support for the rally comes from some unexpected sources, as well.
Flint Energy is parking a huge dump truck near the events center on Goddard Avenue so bikers can park their bikes and climb in the truck cab to better understand a truck's blind spot. Flint and other members of the La Plata Energy Council also have committed to not drive their trucks through Ignacio during the bike rally weekend. Mooney said that's an important commitment to biker safety.
The rally is part economic development, part tourism promotion, and partly a way to share Southwest Colorado with bikers from throughout the country, she added.
"It's a fabulous end-of-summer event," she said. "We hope everybody will come enjoy it, whether they're on a bike or on foot or driving a car."
Volunteers are still needed in the beer tent and at the community kids rally. To volunteer, visit www.ignaciobikeweek.com
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