• Biketoberfest kicks off in Daytona Beach


    DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - Motorcyclists from across the country will be packing Daytona Beach the next four days for Biketoberfest, and officials said they expect the event to bring in $250 million for the city.

    Tourism officials told Channel 9 the event is off to a stronger start than years past, and they expect 125,000 bikers.

    "It's pretty big," said biker Rochelle Greek. "There's people everywhere, dressed up in all kinds of uniforms."

    Events: Check out a list of events going on at Biketoberfest this year

    Tourism officials expressed optimism during the event's announcement Thursday morning, but they said they're also facing challenges.

    Shelly Rossmeyer, the local Harley-Davidson motorcycle dealer, said she expects strong sales, but her staff will also be hindered by a safety recall for the 2014 touring model Harleys.

    "Anytime there's a safety recall, we as the dealer, as well as the manufacturer, have to take all measures to get people back on their bikes, so that's going to be our excitement for the next few days," said Rossmeyer.

    Last year, only a handful of crashes involved motorcycles during the event. This year, police will be on extra patrols around Main Street and International Speedway Boulevard.

    Chief Michael Chitwood had a safety message for bikers, but also reminded the public of his brawl during Bike Week.

    "Obey our rules," said Chitwood. "I promise to keep my finger out of people's mouths this year, so we won't have any issues there and I think the most important thing of this event is when you come to Daytona Beach this weekend, spend plenty of money."

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    Biketoberfest kicks off in Daytona Beach