FORT WAYNE – Last week's storms that knocked out power for thousands of Fort Wayne residents won't stop the city from being inundated by motorcycle riders today.
Event and convention officials said the Gold Wing Road Riders Association's Wing Ding convention will be going on in full force this week – meaning nearly 8,000 Honda Gold Wing motorcycle enthusiasts will be eating, drinking and playing in the Summit City over the Independence Day holiday.
Mike Stiger, director of the association, said the storms are not expected to hurt attendance, as every hotel he's contacted has power.
"We're just hoping for no more storms," he said.
The local convention bureau, Visit Fort Wayne, posted notices online giving information on the storms to potential guests as a way to ensure they know the city is safe to visit, according to marketing manager Kristen Guthrie. She said several people have called her office to ask about the event and the weather, but she has not heard of any cancellations.
While events for the convention began Tuesday, the official grand opening is this morning at Memorial Coliseum. The group will have its light parade tonight and its grand parade Friday afternoon.
On Thursday, the association and local emergency crews will conduct a motorcycle crash scene re-enactment. The public event will be staged in the Coliseum parking lot at 2 p.m.
Stiger said while some of his riders had questions about the city, he made sure to get the word out that everything is a go.
"They're coming, trust me, they're coming," he said.