The inaugural Mayor's Back the Badge Ride will be held Thursday evening, June 24, in the K-Mart parking lot in Grand Forks. From there, an off-road vehicle parade will make its way through Grand Forks before returning to the Grand Cities Mall, where there will be food trucks, live entertainment and family-friendly fun.

The event will raise funds for the Grand Forks Police Department, the Grand Forks County Sheriff's Office and the UND Police Department, though the event has already surpassed its fundraising goal of $20,000 through local sponsorships.

As of Tuesday, June 22, the event had raised $23,000. All funds raised will go directly to local law enforcement to use however they see fit.

Grand Forks Mayor Brandon Bochenski said he hopes the community will see the event as an opportunity to show local law enforcement how much their work is appreciated.

"I want to show that we're a safe and secure community and we believe in law and order, and we're going to support our police here," he said.

WDAY logo
listen live
watch live
Newsletter signup for email alerts

Community members are invited to bring their ATVs, UTVs, motorcycles and golf carts to the Grand Cities Mall for registration between 5 and 6 p.m., when Lacey Schuler will sing America the Beautiful. The parade will leave the parking lot at 6:05 p.m., make its way down 17th Avenue South and Belmont Road to the police station in downtown Grand Forks before returning to the Grand Cities Mall. Food trucks and live music by Killer Soundscape will run from 7 to 8:30 p.m.

Registration is $25 for each vehicle and can be purchased on the event's Eventbrite page. Each registration includes a Back the Badge T-shirt and a mini thin blue line flag. Vehicles do not need to be street legal. Admission to the event is free for anyone who wants to attend but not ride in the parade.

Bochenski said he hopes that the Mayor's Back the Badge Ride will become an annual event, which is inspired by his own love of UTVs.

"It's a good way to get people out, and to give everyone an event to go to and show their support to the community," he said.