Manitoulin cycle rally ranked No. 1 event for 2012

by Robin Burridge

MANITOULIN—Central Manitoulin’s Ride Manitoulin has been named the number one motorcycle event in Ontario this summer by Northern Ontario Travel.

Last summer was Ride Manitoulin’s inaugural event. Held at the Providence Bay fairgrounds, the event offered an array of activities and vendors such as poker runs, live music, Yamaha demos, Dynotunes tuning centre and a freestyle motocross demo.

The event was a huge success, bringing in over 300 registered bikers, an estimated 600 bikes in total, and over 900 people in attendance throughout the weekend.

On the Motorcycle Touring section of the Northern Ontario Travel website, it lists the top five motorcycle events in Ontario for 2012.

Ride for Dad in North Bay placed fifth, with Bikers Reunion in New Liskeard close behind in fourth place. Ride for Sight in Sault Ste. Marie came in third, while the famous Friday the 13th event, PD13 in Port Dover, placed second.

Ride Manitoulin was named the number one motorcycle event in Ontario for this summer, boasting, “this sprawling event on the quiet isle known for its beautiful inland lakes, miles of quiet roadways, and friendly people, this is our summertime pick.”

Planning is already well underway for this year’s Ride Manitoulin, with the township of Central Manitoulin taking the lead in conjunction with the event’s steering committee as well as the Providence Bay/Spring Bay Lions Club.

“We attended the International Supershow (the North American International Motorcycle Supershow) in January to promote the event and Manitoulin as a premier riding location,” explained Central Manitoulin economic development officer Amanda Gunner.

Ms. Gunner told The Expositor that the committee is hoping to double attendance this year and plans on donating all proceeds from the event to Manitoulin Family Resources and the Manitoulin Help Centre food bank.

Changes and additions to the event this summer include Harley Davidson as a vendor, combining the east and west poker runs into one, a ladies ride, a logo contest and a new website.

“The new website will allow riders and vendors to register for the rally online, pay for registration online with PayPal and upload their photos from the event, among other new features,” explained Ms. Gunner. “It will be a great tool for the event.”

The new website is currently under construction, but is scheduled to go live shortly.

Ride Manitoulin’s visit to the Supershow, as well as the new website, was made possible thanks to a grant from FedNor, who also lent support to the event last year.

Ms. Gunner told The Expositor that the addition of the logo contest this year is to establish a t-shirt design for the rally.

“We already have the official Ride Manitoulin logo, but we would like to have a new t-shirt design every year to promote the event, local artists and act as a collectors item for riders and rally attendees,” said Ms. Gunner. “The contest is open to all ages since the event is family friendly and we are open to any ideas.”

The design must be ‘family friendly’ and reflect the event’s colours of red, white and black. The winning design will receive $250 and a t-shirt with their winning design.

Designs must be no larger than 8-by-10-inch and submitted in .jpg format by April 20 at 4 pm to centralecdev@amtelecom.net.

Ride Manitoulin 2012 will take place July 21 and 22 in Providence Bay. For more information on the event, registration or the logo contest, contact Amanda Gunner at 705-377-5726.