ATLANTIC BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) — Although Atlantic Beach’s BikeFest got called off this year, police in town are expecting many bikers to come anyways.
“We’re still going to plan for busy crowds,” Chief Quentin Robinson said. “So we’re going to have SLED, DNR. Highway patrol will be driving through. My officers will be out.”
The town announced earlier this year the tradition would be canceled this year over COVID-19 concerns. Last year’s BikeFest was postponed at first and later canceled.
Chief Robinson said many people who are used to coming to the event will likely make the trip despite that.
“Just kind of let them have fun, as long as they don’t bring violence,” he said. “As long as no vendors come in, we probably ain’t going to mess with them and get through the weekend.”
Neighboring North Myrtle Beach is also expecting crowds and will have more officers out.
Many people were already arriving for the weekend.
“We still want to come out here and just enjoy it because we’re used to doing it anyway,” said George Gause, a biker. “Just get away from the house.”
Gause said he he’s been coming to Atlantic Beach to ride his bike for about 20 years.
Businesses prepared Thursday to host the bikers.
“We accommodate people with the best food in town and it’s late night food- you can get food all night long,” said Horace Thomas said. “It’s for the people who are here. Servicing them. And, of course, we’re serving culture.”
Robinson said it’s unclear how many people will attend.
“We’re not taking plans for bike week we’re just kind of– the unknown right now,” he said. “We don’t know how many people will come. Could be anywhere from 50 people to 10,000. We don’t know what to expect.”