Belen motorcycle rally canceled due to safety concerns
BELEN, N.M. – On the heels of a violent Memorial Day weekend in Red River, another small town is pulling the plug on its bike rally that was scheduled to happen in one week.
KOB 4 cameras were rolling during the interaction between a Belen police officer and the organizers of the B-Town Bike Rally and Show.
The officer delivered a letter from the city manager and other leadership, telling them the rally is officially off.
Randy Gettings and Welky Theodore have been planning their third annual bike rally since 2022. But things quickly came to a halt after last weekend’s fatal shooting at the bike rally in Red River.
“We meet Wednesday. I was contacted from Parks and Rec, and they said ‘Hey we have a meeting regarding yours and Randy’s rally.’ So we set up the meetings,” said Theodore.
The organizers say they understand public safety is the main concern, but they say the city led them on.
“First they gave us the 24th. I called every vendor, every sponsor, everything that day, right after we left that meeting, and I personally called everyone and changed it to the 24th. Then, they called me and asked us to change it to July 1,” said Gettings.
City leaders planned a meeting with residents to talk out concerns, but canceled it before it happened.
“If you were going to cancel it you should have done it right there not led us on,” Theodore said.
Theodore and Gettings are no strangers to planning events for the city.
“This isn’t the only event we have organized, like I said we organized ‘Burning of Old Man Cejas,’ we organized youth basketball tournament, drive-in movies – we’ve done everything in this city,” said Gettings.
Along with the letter, the city also provided the organizers with a check to cover at least some of the costs.
KOB 4 reached out to several city leaders including the city manager and the mayor for comment, but did not hear back.
In the meantime, the two organizers are calling vendors and letting them know the event is canceled.