We left Stevens Point, WI at our usual 8am kickstands-up hour, and had a very leisurely ride into Milwaukee. The weather was about 72 degrees when we arrived; a far cry from the 90's when we left Indiana. It was very brisk in the morning- I actually had to get out the fleece jacket I brought just in case Minnesota got cold enough. It sure enough did.
When we hit the outskirts of Milwaukee, we paused at a Harley Davidson dealership for about 15 minutes while the constabulary set up road blocks ahead. By the time we re-entered highway 94 heading into Milwaukee, there wasn't a car on our side of the road. Every car was held back while officers from 8 different districts escorted us to the Milwaukee Legion post. No trucks, no idiot lane-changers, no merge horrors. Just wide-open, clear freeway ahead for about 20 miles. And cops at every interchange. Suppose this is how PBO feels on his way to a speech? This stretch of freeway was cleared to both announce the 'arrival' of the Legion for Convention Week, but also to keep the riders safe thru some difficult stretches where we could have been separated and lost.
At the conclusion of the ride, another lunch was held, and we then went our separate ways to hotels. I'm currently holed up in the Hilton in downtown Milwaukee. At this point, I'm impressed with the riverfront downtown. But, I do notice that traffic is nearly non-existent, even on a Friday afternoon.
I'm also guest-blogging over at Burnpit, where Mothax keeps info for the Legion. I'll be linking back to my posts there as the convention goes along. There are several really good surprises going on this week- so stay tuned as I look in on the largest veterans-advocacy group in the nation. Oh, and I cannot forget to mention our really good friend Greyhawk from Mudville Gazette will be along as well- Mothax, Grey and I linked up yesterday and I'm looking forward to catching up and furthering and growing our world media empire.
Also, be sure to check out the videos and pics over at the Legion Riders site- they've put together some amazing footage. Too bad those guys had to ride around in a cage during the ride- if that were me, I'd be jonesing for a bike in a bad way.
-One of the riders along with us I called 'Bungee'. This rider, who shall remain nameless, had some issues with throttle control. He could not maintain position in the formation- he was either running up, or dropping back, out of position. He just could not ride with someone at his 4-o'clock. Back and forth. Back and forth. Luckily, we got used to it and gave him some more room. Somebody said he was a former helo pilot and flew exactly like that...
-I had a chance to meet the REAL 'Mr Wolf'. WO1 Wolf, to be exact, of the Iowa National Guard. See, for those who don't know it, Warrant Officers can be addressed as 'Mr.' in the military. Especially WO1 rank, as they've not yet acheived 'Chief Warrant' status and don't get called 'Chief'. Nice guy, too.
-This business, below, could only be found in Missouri. Yeah, looks just like the kind of place I'd like to eat. But, which is on the menu, and which is not? Can you really tell the difference? And if I have to explain frog gigs...
-The road in Wisconsin was like glass most of the way. Hiway 29 was fantastic- little traffic, very little construction, and the road was like new. Had it been winding two-lane, it would have been perfect.
-I mentioned in a previous post about the ceremony with the 5-star Freedom Riders- go look at this video and tell me what you think. If you can pull away from it. It's a mandatory viewing- they begin at :50 seconds into it.
-Remember, EVERY rider in this 400 person group was a veteran. NO non-veterans rode in the group. All were also Legionnaires; starting the ALR group in the Legion has brought more new members than any other activity. I hope you'll consider joining me next year!
Enjoy the pics below!