Riders nationwide to visit Tampa for the 5th remembrance ride
Tampa will once again play host to the largest escorted motorcycle ride in the state of Florida. Motorcyclists from across America will gather Sept. 10 at Gadsden Park, adjacent to MacDill, and ride in procession through the streets of Tampa to honor the memory of those lost on Sept. 11.
The ride will benefit two very important charities, Operation Warm Heart and the Gold Shield Foundation, serving the families of local law enforcement/fire/EMS personnel, and families of enlisted military personnel stationed at MacDill.
Immediately following the ride there will be a commemorative ceremony at Channelside followed by a country-music concert starring Nashville recording artist Keni Thomas.
The annual Remembrance Rides, sponsored by Harley-Davidson of Tampa, Brandon and New Port Richey, began in October 2001 immediately after the 9/11 attack on America. Since its humble beginning Remembrance Ride has grown to become the largest escorted motorcycle ride in the State of Florida with riders numbering in the thousands participating each year.
They travel from Alabama, Ohio, Virginia, North Carolina and many other states to join forces with Tampa Bay's biking community in a show of solidarity to pay tribute and honor the memory of those lost on that tragic morning. To date Remembrance Ride has raised almost $200,000 to benefit a variety of charities including the Twin Towers Fund, Gold Shield Foundation, Special Ops Warrior Foundation and Operation Warm Heart.
The day gets underway at 7 a.m. when bike staging begins at Gadsden Park. At 10 a.m. the motorcycle procession will depart with law enforcement escorts representing motor units from Tampa Police Department, Hillsborough County Sheriff's Department, Florida Highway Patrol and many other law enforcement agencies from across Florida.
The procession will be led by sixteen members of the New York City Fire Department who've become an integral part of Remembrance Ride.
"On behalf of my brothers and myself we are very honored to be invited by Harley-Davidson of Tampa, Brandon and New Port Richey to participate every year since its inception in "The Remembrance Ride" we thank you Tampa. To keep this alive is so very important to every American citizen…not only those, like ourselves, who were directly affected by the horrific devastation of September 11th," said Lt. Brian Grisanti, FDNY spokesman for the group. "We look forward to leading the ride on Saturday, September 10th in remembrance of the 343 brothers of FDNY who made the supreme sacrifice."
Riders are scheduled to roll into Channelside around 11 a.m. At noon, a solemn, commemorative ceremony gets underway followed by the Keni Thomas concert beginning at 1 p.m. While participation in the procession is limited to motorcycle riders, the post-ride event at Channelside is free and open to the public.
Tampa Bay Area residents are encouraged to welcome the riders into Channelside and attend the post-ride event. While the memory of 9/11 has faded into the memory of many…it remains alive in the hearts of the Harley-Davidson community. Through their annual Remembrance Rides they provide an opportunity for the Tampa Bay community to come together as one patriotic family and celebrate the freedom that makes America great.
Ride registration fee is $30 per rider and includes a pre-ride breakfast at Gadsden Park, 5th Anniversary commemorative t-shirt, complimentary bike parking at Channelside, complimentary food from sponsoring Channelside restaurants and much more. Commemorative t-shirts are available for sale for $15 with proceeds to benefit the charities.