Originally published on August 23, 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.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
I don’t mind cool and sunny weather for riding…..well, maybe cold and sunny was what we had this morning, but I didn’t mind it too much.
Cold translated to temps in the mid-forties as we rolled out of Billings today. (Thanks for leaving me behind JT!)
We got an early start because we had a long day (350 miles) and we lost an hour as we switched to the Central time zone. And we promised the dealer in Bismarck that we’d make it on time for his big 105th Anniversary Party.
Our riding group was made up of 15 people on 13 Harleys. It’s a good group by the “Piehl Measure.” That means they fuel up quickly and there is lots of fun and chatter at gas and lunch stops.
Rough Rider Harley-Davidson, the dealer in Bismarck, had a great party tonight. We got there at just after five pm and were welcomed by a big group of local Harley riders and HOG members. The event had live music, free soda and water, and great food. Bill Stewart, the owner gave us a tour and we quizzed him about how his business was doing. It’s a good time to be the Harley dealer in Bismarck.
Ron Hutchinson is still reeling from the intro he got last night in Billings, when the announcer gave him credit for “all the great technology that sits between your legs.” He mentioned it as he spoke to the crowd today.
He also had a fan who wanted her picture taken with him. Her comment was “I want to make my husband jealous….I like the short guys.” I got a picture, too!
Yesterday I gave you the link to the web site for Milo’s Rat Bike. The bike is fun (you have to see it) and Milo is a great guy. He’s got more stories than we’ll ever be able to fit into this ride. His bike hasn’t been washed since 1980 and he estimates that it has about 200 pounds of “stuff” on it.
The best comment about the bike came from Bill Stewart, the dealer here in Bismarck. Bill said “You need to get a tetanus shot if you touch it, and I’m a little bit worried about having it too close to the food.”
There is a web site that is doing a much better job of covering this ride than I am, and they have pictures, too. Jeff and Debbie are posting every day to www.cyclematters.com. You should check it out. If you meet Debbie, ask her why they call her “Radio.”
Tomorrow, the group breaks up for two different routes. Gene Ostrom, John Olin and I are heading to the dealer event in Grand Forks, ND, while JT and the Hutch’s are heading to a dealer event in Jamestown, ND. We’ll all end up in Fargo for another party tomorrow night.
What a job!