Thunder in the Valley 1st U.S. Motorcycle Rally Sanctioned by FIM N.A.

Thunder in the Valley 2016

The Thunder in the Valley Motorcycle Rally in Johnstown, Pa., has become the first U.S. rally to be sanctioned by the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme North America.

The 19-year-old rally features concerts, motorcycle demo rides, bike parades, guided rides, an AMA-sanctioned National Gypsy Tour, the American Motor Drome Wall of Death, Ill Conduct Harley-Davidson stunt team, vendors and more.

FIM North America is one of six Continental Unions recognized by the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme. The American Motorcyclist Association and the Canadian Motorcycle Association are members of FIM North America and participate in the governance of the Continental Union.

“We are thrilled to be able to sanction such a well-established and successful event as the first FIM North America rally in the United States,” said FIM North America President Marilynn Bastedo, who also is chief executive officer of the Canadian Motorcycle Association. “The sanction places the Johnstown event in front of an international motorcycling audience through the FIM North America website and on the International Motorcycling Federation website. We hope that this marks the beginning of a long relationship with Thunder in the Valley.”

For several years, FIM North America has sanctioned the Blue Nose Rally in Billtown, Nova Scotia. The sanction moves to the United States for 2016.

Commemorative pins will be distributed at the American Motorcyclist Association booth during the rally.

“We are so honored to receive this prestigious sanction,” said Lisa Rager, Executive Director of the Johnstown Convention & Visitors Bureau, the organization that operates the rally. “We have worked very hard the past 19 years to build this rally up to receive national recognition, and now, to have this sanction and international recognition is very special.

“Johnstown does a fantastic job of welcoming motorcyclists, not only during Thunder in the Valley, but throughout the year,” Rager added. “We look forward to showcasing our community to a world-wide audience.”

The 2016 edition of Thunder in the Valley is scheduled for June 23-26. More information about the event is available at

Thunder in the Valley – Johnstown PA 6-24 to 6-27

Jun 24th, 2010 through Jun 27th, 2010

From MC RALLY FINDER: Held the fourth weekend each June, Thunder in the Valley® is one of the largest motorcycle rallies on the east coast, and certainly one of the fastest growing. When local motorcycle dealers approached the Greater Johnstown/Cambria County Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) with the idea of a motorcycle rally in the area, back in 1998, CVB jumped on the idea. The knew that the greater Johnstown area had a lot to offer the biker, and that all those motorcycles had a lot to offer Johnstown back. The first year of the Thunder in the Valley® motorcycle rally attracted about 5,000 bikers, a huge success for the amount of promotion done. The second year saw the rally double in size, and now Thunder in the Valley® motorcycle rally attracts an estimated 170,000 bikers.

The entire community of Johnstown seems to stand behind the Thunder in the Valley® motorcycle rally. Many of the streets in Johnstown are designated motorcycle only parking during the event. The people appear to realize the econimic boost a successful motorcycle rally can bring, so the residents mingle with the bikers, place ‘Welcome Bikers’ signs in the windows, and anything else they can do to make the bikers stay an enjoyable one. Top all this off with some of the best riding in the north-east, and you can see why Thunder in the Valley® has grown as successfully as it has!

Although Thunder in the Valley® motorcycle rally officially starts on a Thursday, CVB and the residents of Johnstown invite all bikers to show up earlier in the week. There is so much to do that four days just may not be enough time. Perhaps this means that Thunder in the Valley® will one day officially be extended to a full week long rally. Let us hope so. For now, be sure to check out what Thunder in the Valley® has to offer, and remember to book reservations early! As I was researching this motorcycle rally in early February, I noticed that all motels in Johnstown are already booked full. But there is still available lodging within 30 miles, so don’t give up.

Motels and Camping Near Thunder in the Valley®

Typical Events at the Thunder in the Valley® motorcycle rally

A partial list of events is provided here, but I highly recommend going to the official website, listed below, to get a detailed listing as well as a schedule.

  • Wheels & Wings- “Wing Off”, Car & Bike Show
  • Grand Thunder Motorcycle Parade
  • Burn Out Pits
  • Biker Build Off
  • Guided motorcycle tours
  • Live music – Train Station and Central Park venues as well as at several local businesses
  • Vendors – for about anything a biker would want