The 105th Adventure–Part Five

Originally published on August 22, 2008

Harley-Davidson celebrated its 105th Anniversary in 2008. I was one of the 105 execs designated to start a ride from a Harley-Davidson dealer to the big party in Milwaukee.  

Friday, August 22, 2008.
Today was all about the customers who join us in Billings. And we’re seeing more and more riders who are on their way to Milwaukee.
Barry Usher, the Harley-Davidson dealer in Billings is a great supporter of the Motor Company and Harley riders. He’s known for rolling out the red carpet for riding groups. Beartooth H-D has done so at HOG Rallies, the 100th Anniversary Ride and now, the 105th.
This morning, our meeting place was the dealership. We met several of the folks we’d seen and ridden with at previous stops and met some new folks too.
I met a guy named Vern Piel while hanging out near the service department. Vern was originally from Wisconsin, but moved to Oklahoma several years ago where he became friends with our Route Manager, J.T. Hasley. I don’t think that Vern and I are related, he’s missing an ‘h’ in his last name. I’m sure he feels bad about spelling it wrong.
Hutch and I were talking this morning about our daily destinations and he mentioned that we’ll be in Duluth on Monday. That made me think, because it just seems so far from Montana to the Minnesota/Wisconsin border…..but we’re only a couple days away.
One of our riding partners is riding a Harley that is more like a tourist attraction than a motorcycle. I’ll try to talk about it more in the future, but in the meantime, check out this web site:http://www.ratbikemilo.com/
We added another H-D employee to the group today, as Gene Ostrom rode in from Great Falls, Montana. Gene rode out from his home in Illinois, hitting 2600 miles on the trip meter today. Way to go Gene!
We also met a HOG Chapter Director from Southern California named Mike Hamilton. He’s a big man, at least 6’10” who rides a Road King. He started out with our pals in Glendale, California and rode with the H-D folks to Las Vegas. Then he headed north to Join us for tonight’s party. Tomorrow, he heads south to join friends on another ride to Milwaukee. That man is a rider with a capital R.
We ended the day with a great party at Beartooth H-D. Great entertainment including Shelley Fairchild (she’s a Harley rider) and an awesome band called Whiskey Falls. I predict we’ll be hearing a lot more about that band sometime soon.
Back on the road again early tomorrow. I can’t wait!

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