WEEKEND: Free shuttle to Dry Hill mountain bike races; soccer’s Rumble in Rainforest and adult softball tourney also slated

PORT ANGELES — Spectators are getting a special treat with a free shuttle to the Northwest Cup mountain bike races at Dry Hill to free up parking at the site this weekend.

In addition, this is a busy weekend with adult softball leagues kicking off with a special tournament and dedication of the new Shane Park Playground, and Peninsula College hosting a prestigious men’s and women’s college and semi-pro soccer exhibition tournament at Wally Sigmar Field.

This is one of the biggest weekends of the year for the Northwest Cup as the Port Angeles community is hosting a pro-amateur mountain biking event that features some of the top competitors from all over the world on the Dry Hill course just west of Port Angeles.

An expected 100 pros and 300 more amateurs from as far away as France, Ireland, England, Australia and New Zealand began arriving in Clallam County earlier this week and started practicing on Dry Hill on Thursday.

Two-time World Cup champion Aaron Gwin of California and super pro Cedric Gracia of France are scheduled to race this weekend.

Practicing continues today with the real action coming Saturday and Sunday. Pro seeding races are set for Saturday afternoon with competition for pros and amateurs taking place all day Sunday.

Because parking is at a premium at the race site, event co-directors Scott Tucker and Casey Northern are offering a free shuttle for spectators Saturday and Sunday.

“We’re paying for this ourselves as a community service that won’t cost spectators anything,” Tucker said.

The shuttles will run from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.

They will leave from the Harbinger Winery parking lot at 2358 U.S. Highway 101 West, which is located just west of the Port Angeles city limit.

There will be food and drink vendors at the race site.

Barbecue-style cooking will be available by Bighorn BBQ & Grill of Port Angeles while Gypsy Coffeehouse of Port Townsend will have a mobile vendor at Dry Hill.

There is no charge to watch the races.

The event will last until about 3 p.m. Sunday when an awards ceremony will take place. Port Angeles Mayor Cherie Kidd is scheduled to be at the ceremony.

Soccer Rumble

Peninsula College’s Rumble in the Rainforest soccer event also is slated for Saturday.

The Washington Huskies men’s team along with Seattle University, Saint Martin’s College, the Victoria Highlanders and the Kitsap Pumas semi-pro teams will join the Pirates men’s and women’s teams at Wally Sigmar Field.’

Games start at 9 a.m. with the Peninsula men playing Saint Martin’s, and games continue until 6 p.m.

There also will be a family zone and a car show going on at the same time.

Admission is $30 for a family of four or more, $10 for 16 and older, $5 for those 9 to 15 years old and free for those 8 and younger.

Adult softball

The Port Angeles Parks and Recreation’s men’s and women’s softball leagues get started with a kickoff tournament this weekend with games being played at Elks and Shane fields.

The men get it started tonight with four games. At 7 p.m. on Shane West field, Evergreen Collision takes on Earth Tech Construction, followed by Ace Michael’s Construction playing the U.S. Coast Guard team.

On Shane East field at 7 p.m., All Weather Heating plays Coo Coo Nest, followed by Elwha Young Gunz taking on Moon Palace Bombers.

Saturday morning games include the Lincoln Street Coffee Pot playing the Moose Lodge Bulls at 9 a.m. on Shane West, and the Elwha Braves playing Café New Day Redbirds at 9 a.m. on Shane East.

Last year’s champion, Gastropub, will play the Earth Tech/Evergreen winner at 10:15 a.m. on Shane West.

Women start Saturday morning at Elks Playfield with Smuggler’s Landing taking on Shirley’s Café at 9 a.m., followed by the Airport Garden Center playing the Law Office of Alan Millet.

Other women’s teams getting started Saturday afternoon are Extreme Sports Park, Elwha Bravettes, California Horizon, and Shaltry & Rudd Orthodontics.

Men’s and women’s games will continue Saturday and Sunday with championship games scheduled Sunday afternoon.

There will be a break in the action at noon on Saturday for the dedication of the new Shane Park Playground.

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