Thousands of motorcycles will roar into Palm Springs today for the American Heat Motorcycle Weekend.
Festivities last until 8 tonight, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, city spokeswoman Amy Blaisdell said.
Palm Canyon Drive will be closed from Amado Road to Arenas Road through 9 p.m. Sunday, Palm Springs Police Department spokeswoman Rhonda Long said.
Blaisdell said the three-day event is expected to draw more than 5,000 bikers.
“This group of motorcycle enthusiasts continue(s) to return to Palm Springs and patronize our shops, hotels and downtown businesses,” said Mary Jo Ginther, director of the Palm Springs Bureau of Tourism. “Merchants really
appreciate the increased business and it’s always a hugely successful weekend.”
Long said police are anticipating a lot of business downtown.
“The Palm Springs Police Department, along with the assistance of allied agencies, will be out in force with a visible presence to ensure the safety and security of everyone,” she said.
She said there will be additional officers on DUI patrol.
“Not only does the event bring additional visitors, it also brings an increased number of people operating motorcycles, raising concern for the associated dangers of sharing the roadway with DUI drivers or driving a motorcycle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs,” she said.
Long said the city is using a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety to fund the extra patrols.
Those wanting to report non-emergency incidents were asked to call the Palm Springs Police Department at 760- 327-1441, and call 911 to report a suspected DUI.
A schedule of events for American Heat Motorcycle Weekend is at www.roadshowreno.com.