After some last-minute confusion about whether motorcycles would be welcome at the 105th Annual Feast of the Blessed Sacrament, all was sorted out and peaceful by the firing of the cannon that officially opened the four-day event last night.

Police Chief Joseph Cordeiro asked the city's Licensing Board to change long-standing, unwritten policy that allowed bikers to park Feast. The Chief cited public safety as the reason for the request and it was approved unanimously by the board. Bikes are no longer allowed to park in front of the Panthers.

The Feast (TSM photo)
The Feast (TSM photo)

In speaking with the Chief, the request makes sense. He was completely upfront about it and why he feels it is necessary. The new policy was not formally announced, however, which created lots of confusion. We had to dig around at the last minute to confirm that it was true and that left a lot of folks trying to figure out the reason for it.

After a lot of hemming and hawing about the rules change, it appears bikers who threatened to boycott the Feast had second thoughts as parking spots at the even larger new location for bikes, two blocks north at the Ponta Delgada Club, were all filled.

All's well that ends well. See ya at the Feast.

Barry Richard is the host of The Barry Richard Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from noon to 3 p.m. Contact him at and follow him on Twitter @BarryJRichard58. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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