Atlantic Beach prepares for Bikefest festival


According to officials' estimates, there will be around one citizen for every 1,000 visitors in Atlantic Beach over Memorial Day weekend.

With the Atlantic Beach Memorial Day Black Pearl Cultural Heritage and Bike Festival less than two weeks away, the town is in full preparation mode.

"We're looking to expand it, in terms of making it even broader and attract other participants other than just bikers," Town Manager Benjamin Quattlebaum said.

Quattlebaum said he was hoping 80 food and retail vendors sign up, and explained that normally, many sign-ups happen in the final week.

He said the entertainment would be provided for free, unlike last year.

"[Paying for the entertainment] wasn't very receptive in terms of participation, so this year we're going back to free entertainment through Bikefest weekend," he said.

Quattlebaum said he's seen increased enthusiasm from residents this year, including property owners offering to turn their lots into places to park.

"We just sit up on the balcony and watch it all go," Sheri Rogers, who manages several properties in town and said she enjoys the festivities, explained.

Officials say the kickoff to the festival will take place May 24. Vendors will begin selling the next morning.

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