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30,000 motorcyclists expected to cruise the Mississippi

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With 70-plus degree weather and the sound of birds chirping comes another migratory animal – hogs.

This weekend, motorcycle season has its unofficial start in Minnesota, as 30,000 bikers are expected to be cruising the Mississippi River for the 51st annual Flood Run.

The Flood Run began when 12 bikers rode 90 miles to Winona to help with sandbagging during the 1965 floods.

51 years later, bikers come out in the thousands to raise money for the Gillette Children's Hospital.

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Red Wing, Wabasha and Lake City are among the Minnesota cities riders will pass through on their 90-mile trip to Winona. But many will also travel on the Wisconsin side of the Mississippi.

The DPS also uses weekend as the annual reminder for drivers to watch for motorcyclists.

“It only takes one bad decision to cost someone their life,” says Lt. Tiffani Nielson of the Minnesota State Patrol said in a statement. “Motorcyclists and drivers need to step up and take action to prevent these crashes.

There will be extra patrols in southeast Minnesota just for the event.

This won't be the last time that motorcyclists will gather in Minnesota this year.

The Let's Ride website has a list of the events, including rides that raise money and support for breast cancer, stillbirths, suicide prevention and ovarian cancer.

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Hundreds of motorcycles expected along Mississippi River Saturday

The annual Spring Flood Run is taking place between Winona and the Twin Cities in Minnesota and Wisconsin. KAGE Radio reports money raised from cyclists participating in the event goes to the Gillette Children's Hospital in the Twin Cities.