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Traffic Loop
Traffic Fences and a 23 mile loop welcome 300,000 bikers

Families Visit Nearby Beaches During Black Bike Week


A 29 mile traffic loop was hastily put in place downtown Thursday as Myrtle Beach geared up for the annual Myrtle Beach black bike week rally.  The weekend rally generates $36 million in room rentals for the area.

Traffic Loop
Traffic Fences and a 29 mile loop welcome 300,000 bikers
Traffic Barricades
Street Barricades Are Put Out City Wide

Traffic fences and barricades along ocean boulevard send a strong message that the area is not a safe place. Families stay home.  The city of Myrtle Beach does not put up traffic fences or loops during any other holidays, weeks or weekends.

Memorial day weekend, however, is a high travel family beach weekend.   Families who do visit our area choose the beach cities of North Myrtle Beach, Garden City Beach, Surfside Beach, Pawleys Island, Ocean Isle Beach,  and even Oak Island Beach above and beyond the city of Myrtle Beach.

Family Friendly City of North Myrtle Beach. Photo Explore NMB

The city of Myrtle Beach is rated the 17th most dangerous city in America by neighborhoodscout.com while nearby beach cities (The City of North Myrtle Beach, Garden City, Surfside Beach, and Pawleys Island)  are rated among the safest and most family friendly beaches in America.  Residents and merchants of Myrtle Beach are more and more addressing these crime issues. A coming Fall election could see a sea change in leadership.

While the city of North Myrtle Beach is just a few miles from the Atlantic Beach biker rally registration area,  it is the city of Myrtle Beach that draws all of the headlines from the Myrtle Beach Black Bike week rally.

This bike rally is one of the highest grossing tax weekends for the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce. In fact, Memorial Day weekend is one of the four highest grossing weekends in Myrtle Beach. The black bike week rally is not promoted by the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber despite producing among the highest financial revenue for the Chamber in  taxes.   The Myrtle Beach Area Chamber collects a 1% tax on every black biker who stays or spends money inside the city of Myrtle Beach.

Statistically,  the black bike week rally is no more dangerous than other weekends in the city of Myrtle Beach.  Hotels, like the Palms Court and their customers,  have recently described any given day in  the downtown area as crime ridden and an ongoing war zone.

Myrtle Beach feeder cities that include Charlotte, N.C., Durham, N.C., Baltimore, MD, Philadelphia, PA,  Cleveland, OH, and Detroit, MI have all become minority majority cities over the past decade.  51% of the population of many of the cities in Northeastern USA are minorities.   As such,  the city of Myrtle Beach is now more and more dependent on minority tourism 365 days of the year.

With the event starting in full today,  Myrtle Beach Police Chief Warren Gall announced last week that he would be retiring on Thursday (Yesterday). The timing was curious.

MyrtleBeachSC.com spoke with film maker Ricky Kelly concerning the Memorial Day bike week.  Kelly is currently producing a Myrtle Beach documentary called Black Beach/White Beach concerning two different Myrtle Beach bike weeks,  Black Bike Week and Harley Bike Week which happened just last weekend.

My hope is that this film will put a spotlight on the unequal treatment of The Memorial Day Bike Fest Attendees, and open a dialogue with city and state officials to address some of the issues such as the traffic pattern, the use of barricades, and over policing. You can’t continue to punish the vast majority of hard working, tax paying American tourists for the actions of a small group that shows up as well. As we can clearly see Myrtle Beach has a year round crime problem, and a 23 mile traffic loop has no relation to stopping crime,” said Kelly

It would be good to see Atlantic Beach, the host of this festival collect an economic development tax of a mear 1% of the $40 to $50 million total dollars that this event brings to the economy of Myrtle Beach.  Because as it stands right now, there is no revenue sharing,” he added.

Kelly’s documentary is expected to be shown nationwide in 2018.



About David Hucks

Born in 1961, David is a 12th generation descendant of the area we now call Myrtle Beach, S.C. David attended Coastal Carolina University and like most of his family, has never left the area.David is the lead journalist at MyrtleBeachSC.com

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