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Mile Marker: July, 2016

By Fred Nabkey

I have decided to take a motorcycle rider’s refresher course this summer. Statistics show that experienced riders over 50 years old were more apt to crash while riding alone, using improper braking techniques, or failing to negotiate a curve. I will admit curves sometimes catch me off guard, and I hope to correct it… Ruth Johnson, Michigan’s Secretary of State, hopped on her 1200 Sporty and led a group of motorcyclists, veterans and police officers across the Mackinac Bridge on May 19 to promote Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month. A rally was held at Bridge View Park where she spoke about the need to share the road, as well as reducing the number of riders without an endorsement. We have approximately 40,000 riders in Michigan without endorsements… Over 400 motorcycles took part in the 4th annual Victory Ride from the National Military History Museum in Auburn, Indiana, to Lucky Harley-Davidson in Fort Wayne to raise money for Honor Flight of Northeast Indiana. Organizer Shane Hoffman feels this is one of the last ways we can honor our men and women who served in World War II… Perry Harley-Davidson and Southwest Michigan H.O.G. #2277 of Portage, Michigan, held the “We Are Kalamazoo” memorial ride on Saturday, May 21, raising $6,700 for the six victims and two survivors of a shooting February 20 by an Uber driver who said his phone told him to do it. Monies collected were donated to Kalamazoo and Battle Creek Community Foundations and United Way to support survivors and families of the victims… Fox Valley H.O.G. Chapter #5521 sponsored by Harley-Davidson of Appleton, Wisconsin, held their 17th annual run to the Veterans Home in King. The run helps fund the recreation programs for the veterans; they have raised over $70,000 for the vets since beginning the ride. According to event coordinator Dennis Moore, the fun part is talking to the vets and swapping stories about the old days of riding and some of the rides and events riders go on now… The Copperheads MC (law enforcement and public safety professionals) of Kenosha, Wisconsin, hauled away over 200 tires that someone dumped along the shoreline of Lake Michigan. Alvin “Chipmunk” Burdick said the motorcycle club formed so it could help the community, and making the community look nice is part of that… The J&P Cycles’ annual Open House held on June 25 and 26 returned home to the J&P store in Anamosa, Iowa, after a one-year move to the fairgrounds down the road. The Parhams have signed a long-term lease on their existing store, and decided to bring the open house back home where it enjoyed over 20 years of hosting the yearly party. The two-day event draws over 30,000 every year… The Knights of the Road MC, established in 1937 in Fowlerville, Michigan, are the keepers of the Michigan Riders Memorial Wall. It sits outside the clubhouse, and can be accessed at any time of day. There are 89 names on the wall, and you do not have to be a club member to be listed. Anyone can add a loved one’s name if they passed away from any cause, and the person must have been a motorcycle rider registered in Michigan. Cost is $150 per name. Plans are in the works for a wheelchair ramp to be added… That’s it for this month; it’s all about you, the Midwest biker. Ride fast, but ride safe.

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