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Freedom Rally fun for all ages

Modified: Tuesday, Jun 17th, 2014

Brody Lugibihl crashes into Erika Bailey and her little sister Paislee Mackey on the bounce slide last Friday at the Evanston Freedom Rally. (HERALD PHOTO/Bryon Glathar)

EVANSTON — The annual Freedom Rally returned last weekend, bringing bikers from all over Wyoming to Evanston for three days of live music, tattoos, contests and local vendors.

The rally, sponsored by Evanston’s chapter of UMF, brought about 150 motorcycles from Gillette, Casper, and more, said rally organizer and UMF member Chaz Rowden.

“This year was better than two years ago,” he said. “Everyone seemed to have a good time.”

Last year, UMF was unable to hold the rally due to scheduling conflicts in the downtown area. Before that, the rally was held on Memorial Day weekend, but due to repeated cold weather, it was decided to move the rally to the second week in June.

Trish Reis, a local who attends the rally every year, said she liked the timing of this year’s rally.

“I like how they did this year because they had it on a different date, and it wasn’t rainy,” she said. “It might have been kind of cold, but it wasn’t rainy.”

Reis said she likes coming to the rally because it is a good chance to have fun and meet people.

“It’s just a kind of hometown fun that you get to enjoy with everybody,” she explained. “It’s nice to be able to go and see people and have a good time, without anything bad going on. It’s nice.”

As for next year, they hope to hold the rally in June as well, Rowden said. But he added that they are going to look at dates of other surrounding rallies to ensure there are no conflicts.

“Our rally was scheduled the same weekend as the Elko Motorcycle Jamboree in Nevada,” he said. “[We are trying] to plan ours at a different time than other rallies so we can get more attendance.”

The rally included live performances from bands such as 3 Card Monte, Late Boomers and Parchman Farm, a parade, a flag ceremony hosted by the VFW and many contests including best and worst bike.

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