It's time for chrome tailpipes, tattoos and leather as the 14th annual Gettysburg Bike Week is set to ride into Adams County July 11-14.
The four-day event will take place at multiple locales, including the Granite Hill Camping Resort in Highland Township, the Allstar Events Complex in Cumberland Township as well as the Wyndham Gettysburg in Straban Township.
A wristband can be purchased for $15 for one day or $40 for four days and allows admittance to all events at Granite Hill, Allstar and the Wyndham as well as the Civil War Wax Museum on Steinwehr Avenue in Gettysburg.
More than 100 vendors are expected at the camping resort along with bike games, a burn-out pit championship, tattoo contests and shows by rock bands Great White, Slaughter and War. New for 2013 is a biker build-off, which will pit Vicious Cycles from Mechanicsburg against the Dillsburg-based Franklin Church Choppers in a bike building competition.
“That really sparks the interests of the hardcore bike enthusiasts,” said Gettysburg Bike Week President Bernie Yanetti.
Battlefield Harley Davidson will be sponsoring motorcycle demo rides from the Allstar Events Complex Friday and Saturday, which will give riders an opportunity to test drive unique bike models shipped in by Battlefield from Harley's Milwaukee, Wisc., headquarters.
“We think we're giving people a lot more value for their wristbands this year,” said Gettysburg Bike Week vendor coordinator Kelly Crist, who noted that the wristband prices did not increase from last year.
Yanetti said a big draw for this year's festivities is three locations to browse vendors, experience demonstrations and enjoy musicians at the Granite Hill and Allstar, and a cook-off sponsored by the Adams County Arts Council at the Wyndham.
The always popular Parade of Chrome is set to depart Allstar on Saturday at 5 p.m. The parade will head north on Emmitsburg Road and into Gettysburg via Steinwehr Avenue before veering onto Baltimore Street and taking a left on West Middle Street, finishing at Granite Hill, where fireworks are slated to go off around 10 p.m.The Steinwehr Avenue Business Improvement District once again sponsored the parade, paying the $1,000 permit to the Borough of Gettysburg.
Featured in the parade will be bikini contest finalists from preliminary competitions held at Ventura's in Fairfield, Dave & Jane's Crabhouse in Liberty Township and Goofy's near Spring Grove. The finalists will be judged following the parade at Granite Hill and prize money will be awarded to the top three.
But amid all the festivities and fanfare, what Yanetti likes the most about Gettysburg Bike Week is the opportunity it gives local restaurants, hotels and shops to maximize their business opportunities at a time when an estimated 25,000 people come to historic Gettysburg.
Yanetti said that the week succeeding the battle re-enactment was traditionally the slowest for businesses in Gettysburg between the months of June and August.
“That's why we went there,” he said. “To fill a gap.”
firstname.lastname@example.org; 717-637-3736, ext. 147; Twitter: @walt_walters
If you go
What: 14th annual Gettysburg Bike Week
When: July 11-14
What: Events at the Granite Hill Camping Resort, Allstar Events Complex and Wyndham Gettysburg
For more information, go to www.gettysburgbikeweek.com.