BikeFest kicks off in Bainbridge - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

BikeFest kicks off in Bainbridge

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Cynthia Millard and friends Cynthia Millard and friends

BAINBRIDGE, GA (WALB) - Thousands of bikers from across the country are in Bainbridge this week for an annual event.

Bainbridge BikeFest has raised more than $750,000 for charity over the last 15 years.

And veteran attendees expect this year's event to be the best ever.

Cindy Millard and her friends meet up at Bainbridge BikeFest every year for one main reason. "Shopping. We like to shop. Get great deals out here."

But while vendors at other festivals may pocket the cash, these salesman give the money to charity.

"Bainbridge BikeFest, over the last 15 years I believe they've been in business, raises a lot of money for charities and we just feel it's a desire of ours to represent Capital City Harley Davidson for that reason," said Capital City Harley Vendor Ben Junkin.

"It's all about for the kids. We give money for the Shriners. We also give for juvenile diabetes. We give to our local sheriff's department. And anytime when a kid around here gets hurt or something like that we also do that," said BikeFest VP Tim Gibson.

Millard says even with the state of the economy, she's noticed a higher than average turnout. "It's better this year. There are a whole lot more vendors than last year."

"It brings a lot of money to the community. All these motels fill up and all the stores get extra income coming in. So I think it's a great thing," said Vendor William Pasel.

BikeFest is organized by volunteers who are supported by several community sponsors.

"Everybody you see out here working is all volunteers. None of us get a paycheck. If we do I haven't seen one yet," said Gibson.

There will also be games and field event competitions tomorrow and Saturday beginning at 2pm each day.

The BikeFest grounds are located on Pond Town Road just north of Bainbridge.

You must be 18 or older to attend.

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