OC Bikefest organizers looking to extend the event
OCEAN CITY, Md. – Every September, OC Bikefest drives big business into Ocean City. Now, organizers are looking to extend the event, making it two weekends long instead of just one. It’s a move local businesses say they can get behind.
Phil Houck, owner of Bull on the Beach and Crab Alley said, “They spend well, they tip well. Good bunch of people. Never had any trouble with them. Glad to have them here for two weeks.”
Extending the OC Bikefest could make it coincide with the controversial H2Oi event. Businesses we spoke to say, that’s not necessarily a bad thing, as they say the H2Oi crowd typically doesn’t spend much while in town.
Houck said, “If H2Oi hears about that, they may not come so they’ll probably change for another weekend, but hopefully it keeps them out of town. Let them go to Virginia Beach.”
Some Bikefest participants, however, aren’t so sold on the idea.
Kim Vallejo, a participant said, “It’s like you’re asking for a problem here.”
Vallejo is worried that having the events coincide wouldn’t stop the H2Oi crowd from coming, and she fears fights could start between the two groups.
“You’re always going to have those people on either side who are going to start something,” she said.
On top of that, she’s worried about the headache the extended event could cause for locals.
“Here’s another thing. We’ve got all this metal running around in Ocean City. What about the peeps who live here year round? How do they feel about it? I mean they’re going to have non stop engine noise for two weeks,” she said.
Despite the concerns though, organizers believe extending the event to two weekends instead of just one could bring a huge economic benefit to the town.
The Ocean City council is set to discuss the matter at Tuesday’s council meeting.
Right now, the event is set to take place from September 15th through the 19th of 2021. OC Bikefest organizers are proposing having the event last 10 days instead, and they’re asking the town for funding so they can make the change happen.