Breaking News
More () »

Muskegon Bike Time and Rebel Road return with city's new downtown social district in place

Muskegon Bike Time will take place next week at Hot Rod Harley, Rebel Road will set up in Hackley Park and linking both events is Muskegon's new social district.
Credit: 13 ON YOUR SIDE

MUSKEGON, Mich. — The two motorcycle events Muskegon's downtown is know for both return next week. Muskegon Bike Time is July 15-18. Rebel Road will take place July 16-18.

The rallies were canceled in 2020 due to coronavirus.

Since the events that attract thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts from around the Great Lakes were last held in 2019 the city of Muskegon established a downtown social district.

Alcoholic beverages from participating establishments can be consumed anywhere Inside the social district running along Western Ave. from 8th Street to Pine Street.

The social district in the heart of the city's downtown is right where Rebel Road, Muskegon Bike Time and other festival are held.

For Rebel Road the social district meant moving the center of activity to Hackley Park.

"This is an expansion for us, it's increasing our footprint," said executive director of the Child Abuse Council of Muskegon County and Rebel Road organizer Kyleen Gee.  

State law doesn't allow non-profits like the Child Abuse Council of Muskegon County to operate a beer tent inside a social district. It's why Rebel Road moved over one block to Hackley Park. The park will be home to Rebel Road's beer tent, music and food booths. Stunt shows associated with Rebel Road will be in the same area.

"We're going to have bikers parked all around the park," said Gee.

Western Avenue is still expected to be a big gathering spot for bikers with motorcycles likely parked along Western Avenue. The road will be reserved for one-way motorcycle traffic only from July 15-19.

Muskegon Bike Time will fill property that surrounds Hot Rod Harley.

"Our theme this year is restore the roar," said Muskegon Bike Time spokesperson Tim Lipan.

Just in time for the big gathering Hot Rod Harley, which is inside the social district, secured a full state liquor license so the lower level of the motorcycle shop can be transformed into a bar.

"They'll be able to serve alcohol beverages out of that lower level and then pour it into a social district cup," said Lipan. From that location Bike Time visitors will be able to walk down Western Avenue with those drinks.

Muskegon's Downtown Development Manager Dave Alexander tells 13 ON YOUR SIDE so far the social district has been a big success.

23-different downtown establishments are participating in the social district.

With thousands of people expected at Muskegon Bike Time and Rebel Road it will be the social district's first real test. Alexander says city staff will be observing the social district during the big events. One worry going into the big weekend is if supplies of the special social district cups will last thru Sunday. 

"Our social district is adding and enhancing to those events," said Alexander. "It's also making those different."

Proceeds from Rebel Road benefit the Child Abuse Council of Muskegon County while Muskegon Bike Time makes contributions to several area charities.

Make it easy to keep up to date with more stories like this. Download the 13 ON YOUR SIDE app now.

Have a news tip? Email news@13onyourside.com, visit our Facebook page or Twitter. Subscribe to our YouTube channel.