Motorcycle officers from all over Northern Virginia and some neighboring states will gear up this weekend to hone their skills and raise money for charity at the Dulles Expo Center in Chantilly.
The public is invited to attend Mid-Atlantic Police Motorcycle Rodeo free of cost, but donations will be accepted to support the Make-a-Wish Foundation. The competition starts at 8 a.m. Saturday, although officers will start practicing on Thursday and Friday.
“The courses are made to replicate what a motor officer could encounter on a day to day basis," said Mike Scanlon, a motor officer with the Fairfax County Police Department and president of the Mid-Atlantic Police Motorcycle Riding Committee.
Officers will practice on 10 courses; five of which are dedicated to speed and five to precision—which includes avoiding objects like cones representing people, objects or debris.
“It’s a good time for us," Scanlon said. "It’s great community outreach, because the officers are accessible to the public for questions. It’s a spectacle that the public doesn’t get to see quite often.”
Oficers who have pre-registered come from as far away as South Carolina and Charlotte, N.C., but also include police from Fort Belvoir, the City of Alexandria, Fairfax City, the Town of Herndon, and counties including Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William, Arlington and Albemarle.
Scanlon said that he hopes the public will come enjoy the show and talk with officers about their work.
"It’s a great opportunity to come out and meet your
neighborhood cop," he said.