Americade, the motorcycle touring rally and a Lake George tradition of nearly 40 years, will not take place this summer, Americade organizer Christian Dutcher announced today.
“When we rescheduled Americade to July, I knew that it was a bit of a long shot. Attempting to create a safe event in the face of a global pandemic was a big challenge and would require numerous changes to ensure everyone’s wellbeing. The odds of it being financially worthwhile were near zero, but we wanted to give it a try for several reasons: We didn’t want to be yet another event that canceled in 2020 (there was already enough depressing news). We knew that all of our partners (vendors and the local community) needed every bit of help we could give them. And we didn’t want to interrupt the 37-year tradition of Americade. It was a challenging, financially draining effort, but we wanted to try. And man have we tried. Five of us have been logging long hours, doing our damnedest to make it happen. But the recent bad turn of events regarding COVID-19 in the U.S. makes it less likely that we could achieve the number one objective we announced when we first set the July dates: It Has To Be Safe.’’
Dutcher said Americade organizers had the popular Americade Expo and other events lined up, including factory demos and displays. Comprehensive safety plans were in place and broad
motorcycle industry support had been secured. While organizers felt they could meet the challenges of managing potentially large crowds and maintaining social distancing, the recent national worsening of the virus could not be overcome “with a level of confidence that we felt was warranted.”
Americade draws participants from across the United States, and Dutcher said, “the worsening trendline of coronavirus cases nationwide coupled with New York State’s quarantine restrictions on people from 16 states led to the final decision. “Out of concern for our customers and our community and out of respect for the work so many are doing to protect our health, canceling Americade 2020 is the right step. We deeply regret having to disappoint our fans and the communities that have always supported us. We hope they will understand.’’
Americade will offer refunds for registrants or enable them to apply their 2020 registration fee to the 2021 event. Registrants who take the 2021 credit will receive early-registration privileges and a $20 additional credit.
Dutcher thanked Warren County Administrator Ryan Moore, Lake George Mayor Robert Blais, Ross Levy of the Empire State Development Corp.’s I Love NY program, Lake George Supervisor Dennis Dickinson, Lake Luzerne Supervisor Gene Merlino, Warren County Tourism Director Joanne Conley, Warren County Sheriff Jim LaFarr, Lake George Regional Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Gina Mintzer and Adirondack Regional Chamber of Commerce President Michael Bittel for their help and continued support.
“Americade is truly a community undertaking. We could not do it without their help and advice,’’ said Dutcher.