This weekend, South Florida's biker community will saddle up for the 15th-annual Bikers Bash and 26th-annual SFPC Toys in the Sun Run. Both events benefit kids, and both will draw thousands of steel hogs from the tricounty area to Hard Rock Live in Hollywood and Markham Park in Weston. Because, let's face it, if Santa exists -- with his long beard, belly like a tank, and absence for days on end -- he's a biker. (We still believe!)
The Bikers Bash kicks off Thursday with a party at Chester's Fort Lauderdale Harley-Davidson, leading into Friday's police-escorted ride down A1A at 10 a.m. At 6 p.m., the official party kicks off at Hard Rock Live at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. This seated dinner will include a silent auction and performance by the Sugarhill Gang. Proceeds will benefit the Boys & Girls Club of Broward County.
Tickets for the Friday-night event cost $250 per person. Tickets for the full Bikers Bash weekend cost $400 per rider and $300 for passengers. These "ultra" VIPs will lead the pack at Sunday's toy run. C'mon, it's for the kids, and you get a T-shirt!
On Sunday, Bikers Bash VIPs will converge with thousands more for the Toys in the Sun Run. Dubbed the "world's largest motorcycle parade," the toy run leads more than 30,000 motorcycles from the Mardi Gras Casino down I-95 and across I-595 to Markham Park. More than 250 police officers will be along the route to stop traffic. Now's a good time to rethink that Sunday-morning trip to IKEA in Sunrise.
Bret Michaels (of Poison and Rock of Love fame) and local boys Riverdown will entertain on the main stage to an audience that, in years past, has included Congressman Allen West, Miami Archbishop Thomas Wenski, and Vanilla Ice. Doc Reno of Big 105.9 will host the show, with proceeds benefiting the Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital.
VIP Toys in the Sun Run tickets cost $100 for single riders or $150 for doubles via big1059.com. Harley owners can get a VIP ticket for $30 plus an unwrapped toy via hogvipriders.com. Standard rider tickets cost $10 plus an unwrapped toy. The parade will depart at 9:30 a.m. sharp.
For those unfortunate few without a motorcycle (or friend with a sidecar), general-admission tickets to the Toys in the Sun Run cost $10 with an unwrapped toy or $20 without a toy. No stuffed animals, please. Markham Park is located at 16001 W. State Road 84 in Weston, and there's a $1.50 entrance fee per person. Get there before 10 a.m., or be prepared to wait until after noon as the bikes stream in.
The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino is located at 1 Seminole Way in Hollywood. For more information on the Bikers Bash, visit bikersbash.org or call 954-537-1010.
Mardi Gras Casino is located at 831 N. Federal Highway in Hallandale Beach. For more information on the Toys in the Sun Run, visit toysinthesunrun.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fri., Dec. 6, 10 a.m., 2013