Tucson CitizenTucson Citizen

Harleys return to downtown for rally this weekend

Hundreds of Harley-Davidson motorcycles will roar through downtown and throughout southern Arizona on Thursday, Friday and Saturday as the 2009 Arizona State H.O.G. Rally makes its third annual visit.

Harleys will congregate inside and outside the Tucson Convention Center, 260 S. Church Ave., and riders will head out of town to explore the region in all directions, rally coordinator Nick Feldaverd said.

Most of the rally events are for H.O.G. members only, but the public is welcome to check out the bike show from 8 to 11 a.m. Saturday in the TCC parking lot and check out the vendors at La Placita Village, 110 S. Church Ave.

There will also be a motorcycle parade through downtown at 4:30 p.m. Saturday.

The Harley Owners Group in Arizona used to hold its annual rallies in Williams, but moved the event to Tucson in 2007.

“There are some tremendous riding areas in southern Arizona that many people don’t know about,” Feldaverd said. “One of the biggest things we enjoy is having our bike games inside (at the TCC).”

Feldaverd said 500 riders have pre-registered, but he thinks total participation will fall short of the 1,500-plus that took part the prior two years.

“I would say 1,500 is really high this year because it is really tough for everyone,” Feldaverd said of the economy.

The rally is offering guided and self-guided rides up Mount Lemmon and Kitt Peak, north to Biosphere 2 and south to Sonoita, Tombstone and the Titan Missile Museum and to other locales.

The rides fill Thursday and Friday, and Saturday events move to the TCC for the morning bike show and the afternoon bike games.

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