A big turnout is expected for a MINI event at Musikfest on Friday.
Every other year, the car manufacturer, MINI USA, sponsors a coast-to-coast road rally for MINI owners with several stops along the way between California and Massachusetts.
This year, MINI of Allentown contacted the event’s organizers to see if it could be one of the stops on the MINI Takes the States 2014.
When organizers visited Bethlehem and saw that their tour would be coinciding with Musikfest, they were sold on the idea.
More than 1,100 MINI car-enthusiasts are expected to descend on Bethlehem – the largest single gathering on the rally route – to enjoy Musikfest and share their car enthusiasm with other MINI fans in the Greater Lehigh Valley.
“It really has grown in popularity and participation,” said Bill Stoeckel, general manager of MINI of Allentown, who helped organize the stop. “MINI owners are very enthusiastic car owners. About 50 percent of our customers have their cars named.”
Because the MINI Rally is a nationwide program, Stoeckel said, the Lehigh Valley and Musikfest will be getting strong national exposure from the rally.
Stoeckel noted the Musikfest stop not only is the largest single stop along the way – some motorists drive only segments of the rally – it also is the penultimate stop.
Rally participants will spend Friday night at hotels in the region and receive breakfast at the ArtsQuest Center on Saturday morning before they leave for the final stop in Boston on Saturday night.