It’s something we all expected was coming but it’s still a bummer. The Motorcycle & Moped Industry Council (MMIC) says its winter motorcycle shows are all canceled for 2021. Of course, COVID-19 is to blame.
For years, the MMIC has run a Canada-wide series of motorcycle shows through subsidiary Power Sports Services (PSS). Most of the manufacturers attend, as well as some distributors and other vendors. For many Canadians, the shows are a chance to check out new bikes, try on/purchase gear, or just re-connect with riding friends in the middle of the winter.
In 2021, there were shows scheduled for Calgary (January 8-10), Edmonton (January 15-17), Vancouver (January 22-24), Quebec City (February 5-7), Toronto (February 19-21) and Montreal (February 26-28). They’re all canceled now; the MMIC/PSS press release says organizers tried to figure out how to make the shows work this year, but “despite these great efforts, due to ongoing health and safety concerns surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, Power Sport Services made the difficult decision to cancel the six shows of the 2021 Motorcycle Show tour.”
The plan is to bring the show circuit back for 2022, and the MMIC already has planned dates. According to the press release, Calgary’s show will run January 7-9 in 2022, with Edmonton running January 14-16 and Vancouver running January 21-23. The shows head east then, starting with Quebec City (February 4-6), then Toronto (February 18-20) and Montreal (February 25-27).
Realistically, nobody should be surprised the 2021 shows were axed, as it would have been a logistical nightmare to sort through the ever-changing rules and regulations in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic. And, even if the MMIC/PSS had figured that out, there’s still no guarantee any exhibitors would have wanted to attend, as businesses would no doubt have concerns about exposing their staff to COVID-19.
The announcement says “PSS is exploring alternatives for the 2021 season in order to promote riding, grow ridership and help exhibitors connect with the next generation of new riders as well as the avid and passionate riders. Please stay tuned – we will be in touch in the coming weeks to share possible options.” Down in the US, the trans-national IMS show circuit shifted to a summer schedule, with emphasis on outdoor events. That probably won’t happen in Canada; expect a focus on online efforts instead, probably.