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Monday, January 18, 2021

Plans for upcoming Leesburg Bikefest moving ahead despite Coronavirus fears

Plans for the Leesburg Bikefest in April are moving ahead despite rapid cancellations and closures across the country related to the ongoing Coronavirus scare.

Leesburg Bikefest 2019
The annual Leesburg Bikefest, scheduled for April 24-26, is expected to draw tends of thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts, visitors and area residents to the city. The Leesburg Partnership said on Friday that plans still are under way for the event despite worldwide fears of the spread of the Coronavirus.

The Leesburg Partnership made the announcement Friday afternoon on its Bikefest Facebook page and website. The event, which draws tens of thousands of people to the city and is billed as “The World’s Largest 3-Day Motorcycle and Music Event,” is scheduled for April 24-26. It is set to spread across 30 city blocks with 55-plus concerts, 200-plus vendors, six “Hotbody” contests and bike and stunt shows.

Joe Shipes

“We are moving forward with the planning and execution of the event,” said Joe Shipes, CEO of the Leesburg Partnership. “With the date still weeks away, we feel that it is too early to make a final decision.”

Shipes said Partnership officials are monitoring the COVID-19 situation closely, along with local, state and national health agencies. He said if the decision to cancel the event is made a later date, an announcement would be made in time for those who are planning to attend to cancel their travel and accommodations reservations.

The annual Leesburg Bikefest is scheduled for April 24-26. At a meeting last week, Leesburg Commissioner Dan Robuck III raised the possibility of canceling the popular event amid fears of the COVID-19 virus being spread among those attending the event that pumps millions of dollars in the city every year.

Shipes added that if Bikefest is held as planned, there will be an “active and very visible sanitization plan” in all of the facilities used in the event.

Leesburg Commissioner Dan Robuck III raised the possibility of canceling Bikefest during last week’s regularly scheduled commission meeting. He cited the massive quarantine under way in Italy and added that while he wasn’t yet pushing for Bikefest to be canceled, commissioners needed to be prepared to take action if needed, depending on the spread of the disease that has since been labeled as a pandemic.

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