BRAG to bring money, traffic, and some scheduling changes to Habersham

A BRAG rider gives a thumbs up as he heads toward the overnight stop at the Ruby Fulbright Aquatic Center in Clarkesville in June 2018. The statewide cycling event returns on June 4, 2023. (Daniel Purcell/Now Habersham)

Habersham County is again on the map for this year’s Bicycle Ride Across Georgia. Cyclists will pedal into Clarkesville for an overnight stay on June 4. When they do, they’ll more than double the population of this host city.

Local officials expect it will be a boon to the local economy and to county cofers.

“The impact, I would imagine, will be greatly beneficial to Habersham County. BRAG will be bringing around 2,500 riders, their crews, and many of their families along with this event. They will fill Clarkesville’s downtown shops, restaurants, and many hotel rooms in the area,” says Habersham County Parks and Recreation Director Brooke Whitmire.

While some riders will stay in local hotels, others will camp out on county-owned property off of Highway 17. BRAG is paying Habersham County’s rental fees to utilize the Habersham County Ruby Fulbright Aquatic Center. The county also will charge $6 per person for anyone who wants to swim.

The Habersham County Senior Center has been given the opportunity to use this as a fundraiser. The Center will host a pancake breakfast before riders leave on Monday morning, June 5, selling plates for $8.

The aquatic center will not be open to the public during this event. However, it will result in little impact on the community since the bikers will primarily use the property on Sunday – a day the facilities are typically closed anyway.

BRAG will leave from the aquatic center by 8 a.m. Monday, so swim time Monday morning, June 5, will be impacted slightly. Pool opening hours will be pushed back from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. on June 5. Pool users that morning should enter from Paul Franklin Road near the county shop.

The baseball and softball fields behind the aquatic center will be the most impacted by this event. BRAG will utilize that space on Sunday, June 4, for camping, so the baseball and softball fields will not be accessible on that day.

The Habersham County Administration Building, which sits on property adjacent to the aquatic center, will delay opening until 9 a.m. on June 5.

“Anyone arriving to do business that morning is asked to have patience and drive safely as they navigate through any stragglers, crews, and campsites on Jacob’s Way,” says Habersham County Public Information Officer Rob Moore.


Thousands of cyclists to visit Northeast Georgia during BRAG

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