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A hot air ballon hovers over a past Berkshire Bike-N-Fly event at the Great Barrington Airport. Photo courtesy Great Barrington Rotary Club

Berkshire Bike-N-Fly promises day of fun and giving back

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By Sunday, Aug 5, 2018 Life In the Berkshires 2

Great Barrington — Borrowing a phrase from the president of the United States, it will be an extravaganza “the likes of which no one has ever seen!” Well, maybe not quite, but the Great Barrington Airport’s eighth annual Berkshire Bike-N-Fly, set for Saturday, Aug. 18, promises to be bigger and better than ever.

“It will be a terrific event, as it always is,” said businessman Richard Stanley, a member of the Great Barrington Rotary Club, the higher-education scholarship fund of which is a major beneficiary of this fundraiser. “But the event will have a number of new features this year.”

A participant in the fly-in portion of the Berkshire Bike-N-Fly event at the Great Barrington Airport. Photo courtesy Great Barrington Rotary Club

One of those new features is a car show. Lime Rock Park, the venerable racetrack down the road in Lakeville, Connecticut, will bring in many older cars for display. And Simon Kirkby, a racing instructor at Lime Rock, will be giving a talk and multimedia demonstration of what it’s like to race a car at Lime Rock, Stanley said.

The full day of activities will also feature scenic airplane, biplane and helicopter rides as well as hot-air balloon rides. Participants can enjoy demonstrations of paragliding, skydiving and radio-controlled planes and helicopters—or you can try out the flight simulator.

Two Guys in Suits and Ties will perform at the 2018 Berkshire Bike-N-Fly event Saturday, Aug. 18, at the Great Barrington Airport. Photo courtesy Two Guys in Suits and Ties

There will also be new and old airplanes on the ground and in the air, food and other vendors, live music featuring local performers, face painting, a bouncy house, raffle prizes, a dunk tank for local celebrities, and more.

The featured musical group will be Two Guys in Suits and Ties, a knock-off of the Blues Brothers act made famous by John Belushi and Dan Ackroyd. Two Guys, based in Canaan, Connecticut, also plays classic rock, Motown, and rhythm and blues.

Additional new features include Berkshire HorseWorks, which will be offering pony and donkey rides; the Great Barrington Kennel Club, which will run an obstacle course; the Egremont Fire Department pancake breakfast; and a demonstration by the award-winning Mount Everett Regional School Robotics Team.

A young participant at the Berkshire Bike-N-Fly event at the Great Barrington Airport. Photo courtesy Great Barrington Rotary Club

Another main attraction is a mountain bike demonstration featuring world record holder Jeff Lenosky. People of all ages can learn mountain-bike skills from a world-class professional, participate in the show and even obtain Lenosky’s autograph.

The Great Barrington Police Department will be conducting a K-9 demonstration. And as it has been in previous years, the Great Barrington Fire Department will be on hand with some of its most experienced firefighters and advanced equipment.

Stanley, who keeps a plane at the airport, said there will likely be military flyovers—perhaps one in the morning and another around noon. And as was the case last year, he would not rule out what he called “unannounced last-minute surprises.”

Other rotary charities that stand to benefit from the event include Elderly Services, the Railroad Street Youth Project, the International Youth Exchange, Breaking Bread, the People’s Pantry, disaster relief and polio eradication.

The Southern Berkshire Chamber of Commerce is also looking for vendors for the large, tented food-court area, which will include a stage and sitting area. Interested vendors can contact the chamber at (413) 528-4284 or betsy@southernberkshirechamber.com.

Cyclists prepare to begin their rides at the Berkshire Bike-N-Fly event at the Great Barrington Airport. Photo courtesy Great Barrington Rotary CLub

The event will begin at 10 a.m. with bike rides of 20, 35 and 52 miles through the scenic Berkshires. Admission is $15 per car load. Bike rides are $40 and include admission to the Fly-In. Pre-registration for the bike ride is required. Click here to register.

Stanley described the Bike-N-Fly as a “unique event that combines aviation, cycling and family fun all in one place.” It’s our guess that few attendees will argue with that assessment.

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2 Comments   Add Comment

  1. John says:

    A wonderful community event!

  2. Roman Montano says:

    This year featuring a short takeoff and landing demonstration by the television star and back country flying instructor CC Pocock of Bush-Air. Should be fun.

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