City welcomes back motorcycle show May 20
SNOHOMISH - The city is welcoming back the Antique and Classic Motorcycle Show.
Thousands of people are expected to flock to downtown Snohomish Sunday, May 20 to admire classic motorcycles and enjoy live music and other activities after the City Council issued a swift 7-0 vote approving the group’s event permit last week.
The ride-in show takes place on First Street in downtown Snohomish.
The show was long held in Snohomish by the Sky Valley Chapter of ABATE until rising costs for police security forced the group to move the show to Sultan in 2009.
In 2010, the show went to Everett and was canceled in 2011.
For the 2012 show, the cost to have police security at the event will be $6,880. The figure is based on 160 hours of police security, provided by 20 officers who will be working the eight-hour show, Police Chief John Flood said.
The year ABATE left Snohomish, the city was asking between $20,000 and $30,000. The cost shot up because the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office no longer covered the cost to provide off-duty officers for the show. Now that the sheriff’s office has taken over police services in the city, the cost has significantly dropped.
The 20 officers are going to be scheduled on their regular days off. There also will be three officers on duty, Flood said.
ABATE will pay the Deputy Sheriff’s Association $40 per hour for security officers and $45 per hour for traffic control officers, plus a $3 per hour fee attached to each member of the association who works that day.
“I will also be seeking assistance from on duty personnel with the sheriff’s office and the Washington State Patrol to help with the roads surrounding the city of Snohomish,” Flood said.
Event chairman Brad Watson and a handful of business owners lobbied the council last week before the vote, attempting to sway any member who may have been on the fence about the event’s importance to the town.
Watson also spent a day circulating a questionnaire to businesses several weeks ago to get a gauge on how inviting the community would be to having the show return.
The response was positive, Watson said.
The influx of people will bring a lot of business to town on the day of the event.
On the event application, ABATE wrote between 8,000 and 10,000 people are expected to attend, although in years past “it’s been a lot less and more,” Watson said.
“If at any given time there’s 5,000 people in downtown Snohomish standing around a bunch of antique and classic motorcycles, I think that’s a good day,” Watson said.
The event organizers are busy looking for sponsors and vendors now, Watson said.
Each show costs ABATE around $25,000.
The group tries to make back a little more than that, in order to give it to a charitable cause.
The first Snohomish show was organized by Buck Kelley, a Sky Valley ABATE member who recently passed away.
It was Kelley’s dream to fill the streets of Snohomish with families and bike enthusiasts, Watson said.
“I’m hoping to make it huge, huge for Buck, that’s what I’m hoping for,” he said of the club’s return to Snohomish.
By STEPHANIE KOSONEN
Published Feb. 15, 2012