Harley Conference to generate millions for Petersburg Area

By Nicole Bell - bio | email
Posted by Iva Radman – bio | email

PETERSBURG, VA (WWBT) - An economic boost is headed to the tri-cities. The Petersburg area has been tapped to host a statewide motorcycle rally.

The event is expected to draw thousands and generate millions in revenue. It will be the first time the H.O.G (Harley Owners Group) will hold their conference in the area.

"The history for this event has been $2 million to the area and that's pretty chunk of change to help out the community," said event coordinator, Jo Ann Emmons.

The four-day event is expected to bring 2,000 people from all over to the area. When participants come to the Petersburg area they'll spend money at local stores, restaurants, shops and hotels.

The manager at the Holiday Inn in Colonial Heights says the event will boost business.

"It's going to keep our hotel running well -- give our people jobs -- keep heads in the bed and fulfill our economic goal for the year," said Marilyn Greene.

Organizers will hold events throughout the Petersburg area during the rally.

"I  think the community will find that it's a family oriented group that looks to come and have fun - get to know the area and come back hopefully for a vacation," said Emmons.

The Petersburg Area Regional Tourism group worked to win the bid.

"It involves our entire region -- individually we don't have the resource for something like this but collectively the Petersburg region does," said Rick Young.

Planners say they selected this area, in part, because merchants and the localities offered incentives.

"Lower rates as far the hotels go.  We have a lot of restaurants onboard willing to give us support as far as discounts on meals.  We'll get discounted rates as far as for example if we're going to the national forestry -- the battlefield," Young says.

The H.O.G rally is scheduled to take place June 22nd through the 25th.

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