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Mile Marker: June, 2013

By Fred Nabkey


As I have said before, folks, spring riding is dangerous. Besides the cages not watching out for you, you’re not used to those sweeping corners yet, either. Take your time and grow into the motorcycle season; there is plenty of time to go fast in the corners… Just released: VIP lodging details at the Iron Horse Hotel for seven nights is being billed as the “Ultimate Harley Experience.” During the week of the 110th Anniversary (August 26–September 2), it includes deluxe double-room accommodations, chrome-level passes to all of the events, nightly entertainment, private events at the hotel, organized motorcycle rides, a jug of the hotel’s Barrel 1907 Rye Whiskey, the ever-present his-and-hers robes and surprise gifts. The whole enchilada will set you back $9,900. OMG; sign me up, boss!… We have a coalition here in Michigan that wants to reverse the no-helmet bill we passed last year, citing that fatalities were up in 2012. More than half of the 129 fatalities were the result of unlicensed cyclists. ABATE of Michigan’s Vince Piacenti said that statistically the rate is well within the normal year-to-year fluctuation, as 2012 ranked fifth in the last eight years of fatality analyses. Still a lot of fatalities to work on, but the death rate did not rise due to the helmet law, as they are saying… The gang at Mid America Harley-Davidson in Columbia, Missouri, held their annual community Easter egg hunt, but moved it indoors so everyone could stay dry. The Tuchschmidt family, Steve and Laura, who have been the owners since 2001, have seen their business grow every year because of two reasons: they are a family-oriented business and love to have fun activities, and they are driven by community involvement. The Easter egg hunt was open to all of the children in the community. They formed a Community Impact Committee (CIC) that meets to review donation request forms from local groups, organizations or activities, and acts on the ones that need the most help. They have built up their business through community love and involvement… Just in case you haven’t read it anywhere yet, Gerbing’s LLC has recalled about 9,900 heated jacket liners due to a faulty connector. Check your liner; if it says Gerbing’s Heated Clothing or Harley-Davidson on the front left chest of the liner, get it checked out. The Harley jackets have part number 98324-09VM on the labels. Now is a good time to check if you haven’t already haven’t done it. Contact Gerbing’s for a free repair or replacement liner at 877.242.5595, or Harley-Davidson at 800.258.2464… On April 19 Gateway Harley-Davidson in St. Louis presented a check for $20,000 to the USO of Missouri to help support active and veteran military personnel in the area. This raises the total to over $100,000 during the last nine years. Money was raised by having an event every month at the dealership. They held bike shows, washes, rides—even a golf tournament. The motorcycle raffle was won by Skip Shank, who took home a 2012 Street Glide. Rene Creed, dealership principal, added that with the opening of the 2013 campaign, their goal is to raise $50,000 this year and again give away a second motorcycle to a military member as a much-deserved “Thank you” for their service… Mark your calendars for a three-day festival in Marion, Illinois, this summer. June 14–16 Black Diamond Harley-Davidson will hold the Southern Pride Invitational featuring music, bull riding and barbecue. The project is the $300,000 brainchild of Southern Pride (commercial barbecue grills) President Jared Robertson. Local, as well as national, acts will be featured during the Father’s Day weekend. Along with the bull riding, there will be a barbecue cook-off with teams competing for a $10,000 prize. Jackyl and Tate Stevens have already been booked. Yeeee Haaaaa… Illinois State University is offering free motorcycle safety courses in its summer and fall class catalogues. It will offer basic, intermediate and experienced rider courses in a partnership with the Illinois Department of Transportation. Illinois residents 16 years or older that have a valid license or permit are eligible to participate. The program provides motorcycles and helmets for students in basic and intermediate classes; you have to provide your own stuff for the experienced rider course. You can sign up online… The results are in, folks, and we geezers are finally out of the woods. For the fifth straight year Harley-Davidson is the number one seller of new street motorcycles to young adults 18–34, women, African-Americans, Hispanics and Caucasian men ages 35-plus. African-Americans and Hispanics are more than two times as likely to buy a new Harley in the 35-plus age group… Back in early March I went bunny hunting with a few friends, and while getting out of the truck I slipped on some ice and damaged my left shoulder (last year was the right shoulder, remember?). Well the MRI showed another tear, so I have not been riding yet. I had a shot in the shoulder, which burned worse than syphilis, but I feel better now. I found out since I fell out of my truck, and if I need surgery, I probably qualify for in-house nursing care. Hubba, hubba. So I am thinking, does that mean if I get the right nurse maybe she could drive me to the local gun range a few times a week and let me fire off a few-hundred rounds? Hell, if I am lucky she will bring her own sidearm and we could shoot team events. Love these pain pills. I will let you know… That’s it for this month, folks. It is all about you, the Midwest motorcyclist. Ride fast, but ride safe.


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