We spent Labor Day weekend celebrating with thousands of Harley enthusiasts and our very good friends.
We have a tradition. Every five years we head to Milwaukee with Sparky and Pattie (friends forever) and Sparky’s brother Dick and we celebrate all things Harley and have fun. We stay in Waukesha with Sparky and Dick’s cousin, Jimmy and his wife Sue. They always make us feel welcome and give us a bit of insight as to the area. Their lovely home, for the weekend, is filled with Harley gear, motorcycles and boots lined up along the hallway, but they never complain. Thanks Jim and Sue!
Harley made some changes this year to how they celebrated their 115th year in business. Events were scattered all around the Milwaukee area to help with crowd control and parking issues. My favorite was the beach races at Bradford Beach. We went on Friday during the practice runs and I’m sorry we didn’t go Saturday for the actual races, cause I’ll bet those were fun. This is a throw-back event from the days of when Harley was a fledgling company and they raced hard against Indian Motorcycles to come out on top. It was their way of letting the public know they were a contender. Bikers race on the sandy beach to come out on top. The sand, as you can imagine, is unpredictable and each lap around the track is different as the track changes with each passing motorcycle.
The dealerships all pulled out all the stops too. There are six dealerships in the Milwaukee area and they all had music, food, vendors selling their wears and thousands of people milling around. The weather was sticky and humid but we saw some great looking bikes, unusual clothing and we laughed a fair amount.
Harley unveiled their 2019 lineup and we each sat on bikes, decided which was our favorite and moved on.
I met the world’s best bartender – ever. Bob Bilda, who we know call Babio (he decided he’s like to be on one of my book covers and instead of Fabio, we now call him Babio) entertained us, poured my new favorite drink (grapefruit beer with whiskey in it) and kept us laughing while we were there. Check out his place when you get to the Milwaukee area – Bilda’s Friess Lake Pub.
A little bit of this trip was sad for me too. We all realized our age and all too soon, there may be a day we can’t ride like we used to. The aches and pains creep in and trudging around with all of those fellow riders took a bit more patience than it used to. But, we’ll still have our memories!