Annual 9-11 motorcycle ride expected to draw thousands of bikers
The sound created by thousands of motorcycle engines can’t be compared to the sounds of planes crashing and the sounds of the devastation during the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.
However, one group hopes the booming rumble of the engines and sight of the cycles travelling in formation will remind people of the gravity of those terrible events.
This is the 12th year the ride has been held, and organizers expected it to be bigger than ever.
Members of the 9-11 Memorial Coalition, who host the event expect this year’s rolling memorial to feature more than 5,000 bikes.
Planning for the ride is a monumental task for the organization, which has found a home at the Clinton Township Volunteer Fire Hall, whose members have done an excellent job helping with the event, according to Tank Baird, president of the coalition.
Fire Chief Todd Winder said Route 54 will be closed to traffic today in preparation of the event. And, in an effort to have all the motorcycles facing the same direction when the column leaves, Winder wants morotcyclists to enter the fire hall’s parking lot via Route 15.
“We’re trying to make sure we load everyone facing the same direction so we can get everyone out on the ride faster and keep a tighter column,” he said.
This year’s event will begin with a memorial service at the fire hall at 5:30 p.m. The public is welcome to attend service, which will include blessings from clergy and the demonstrations from local veteran groups.
At 6 p.m. the bikes will roar to life and take off in one column from the fire hall. The line of bikes is expected to take up to an hour to pass, and motorists are asked to try to avoid the parade route if they do not want to participate. This year, the bikes will head west on Route 54. At the traffic light, they will turn onto Route 15 north and head to West Southern Avenue in South Williamsport.
The column will travel down Riverside Drive until onto Euclid Avenue and cross into DuBoistown and will make a right onto Arch Street and cross the bridge into Williamsport. The column will travel to Third Street and continue through the city, Loyalsock Township and Montoursville, heading toward Lycoming Mall Drive.
The riders will cross under Interstate 180 and continue on Route 220 North until they reach Hughesville, turn right onto Route 405 South and continue through Muncy and Montromery before finally turning onto Route 54 West and returning to the fire hall.
A detailed map of the ride can be found at www.911memorialcoalition.org