Will Daytona Beach Hotel Closures Hurt Biketoberfest?
PHOTO: Biketoberfest 2016 runs Oct. 13-16 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo via Flickr/Don Richards)
Biketoberfest 2016 is rolling on in Daytona Beach, Florida this weekend despite the damage wrought by Hurricane Matthew last week.
But while the annual motorcycle meetup typically draws more than 100,000 people to Daytona and brings in more than $40 million, a handful of hotel closures threaten to cut down attendance and put a damper on this year's celebration.
According to WFTV, damage caused by Matthew last weekend has forced at least 20 hotels to close. The figure represents approximately 14 percent of the 140 hotels in the Daytona Beach area.
The 700-plus-room Hilton Daytona Beach Resort is among those hotels still picking up the pieces, per WFTV.
Fortunately, some impacted hotels have been able to return to operation in a matter of days. WESH reported the OceanFront Inn and Suites just began taking reservations Wednesday but is open for business nonetheless.
In addition to hotel closures, damage, debris and other closed businesses throughout Daytona Beach could discourage some travelers from making the trip.
Although it will be weeks before some hotels are back up and running, it's clear Daytona is ready to make do regardless.
"Matthew is gone. Biketoberfest is on. We are so ready for this event," the Daytona Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau's Lori Campbell Baker told WFTV.
"We've had people say, 'How could you do a big event so soon after a hurricane?' And we balance that with, 'How could we not do an event that supports our employees and small businesses?'" added Baker via WESH.
The four-day event kicked off Thursday and continues through Sunday.
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