For Immediate Release
(Digby, September 13, 2013) – In a time when other motorcycle rallies are seeing declining numbers, the Wharf Rat Rally in Digby has recorded its biggest one-day attendance ever.
Glenn Dunn, Chairman of the Board, was excited to see the numbers. “The weather was really not in our favour this year and yet overall traffic numbers were 16 per cent higher than last year. On Saturday alone, even though it poured rain in the morning, those traffic numbers were 35 per cent higher than in 2012. Bay Ferries also saw an increase of 31 per cent over last year. This shows that this is the right place for the Rally and that we have been able to develop a program that everyone can enjoy. ”
Organizers were expecting an increase. Tamara Bruins, general manager of the Mountain Gap Inn had told them, “Last year we still had some rooms available in August but this year we were full in April and had a waiting list!” Richard Treleaven, owner of the Coastal Inn in Digby explained that the growth wasn’t just in one-day attendance numbers. “We have people who traditionally book three nights but this year they asked if they could reserve longer- it has become a reunion thing now.”
The Wharf Rat Rally worked hard for the increased numbers by attending motorcycle shows in Toronto, Halifax, Moncton and Charlottetown and sending literature to the travel show in Ottawa and many other shows and rallies throughout North America. An unexpected boost to attendance occurred when Deeley Harley-Davidson® Canada announced that it was showcasing the new 2014 models at this year’s Wharf Rat Rally. “Having that great Harley-Davidson presence not only brought more people, it gave added credibility to the Wharf Rat Rally,” Dunn said. “We’re here to stay and we’re not happy being sustainable; we plan to continue to grow, to attract more people and give them reason to stay longer.”
Glenn Dunn, Chairman
Wharf Rat Rally Motorcycle Association
109 Montague Row
Digby, NS B0V 1A0
The 50/50 winner in 2011 took home just over $4000; in 2012, the winner received $10,400 and in 2013, the winner’s share was over $16000. The 2013 winners are Bev Murphy and Sean Kearsey of Mount Pearl NL.
The 2013 Harley-Davidson Fat Boy Lo Softail was won by Brian Comeau and Helen d’Eon of Meteghan, NS.
The Acadian Shore Poker Run saw almost twice as many participants in 2013 compared to 2012, from 68 to 129.
The “Best Custom” category in the 2013 Show n Shine contest had more entrants that the whole contest had (in all categories combined) in 2012.
In 2013, the number of vendors increased by 23 per cent.
Events were extended into Wednesday and Thursday including the Acadian Shore Poker Run, live entertainment on the marina bandstand, a Corks and Forks Guided Tour to Bear River and evening shows of Rocketman, a motorcyclist who lit fireworks off the back of his moving motorcycle on the wharf.