The Parade

A promenade through the Milwaukee area, ending at the lake front

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Another group rides in review, flying their flag.

Hey buddy, your head is on fire!

A proud flag bearer rides past crowds flowing ever closer to the middle of the street.

Don't slap that child!

The riders come in fits and starts, as they escape the affection of the adoring crowds pressing in on upper Wisconsin Avenue. A passenger throws out her arms in enthusiastic revelry.

And so they come. A huge flag unfurls in the background, while riders wave at the crowds lining the streets, and rising up in the air.

There is something odd about the way bridges affect the city of Milwaukee. These freeway overpasses are part of Interstate 794. They divide the city roughly between the downtown area, and the warehouse and factory area of the near south side. This area was formerly known as the Third Ward, but was destroyed as a working neighborhood by massive freeway construction projects.

The people under the bridge. Are these trolls or hobbits setting up house under the bridge, or merely crowds gathered to watch the bikes pass?

A street vendor offers soft drinks. The day was pleasant enough, but it could get hot standing out in the sun.

Between freeways, people sit on cars, out in parking lots, and even stand on the roof of the lot tender's shack. Many wander out into the street. There isn't even the pretense of order here. Note the people standing on the roof off in the distance.

Passing through the warehouse and loft area of the near south side.

A view from the other side, as riders pass under the freeway, and  leave downtown.

For these riders, pulled over and parked on one of the side streets just off of the parade route, the parade is over, and the party has begun. All of the side streets in this area have been closed to be turned into gigantic motorcycle parking lots.

Yet another New Zealander.

Riders pass through the crowd narrowed street single file.

Another reunion rider reaches out to the crown. Children seem especially amused by the idea of touching the riders.

A friendly gauntlet forms another choke point. Note the spectators filling the parking structure, standing on the roof, and sitting on the canopy.

These two Scotsmen are heading away from the parking areas and towards the festival grounds. For many of the early riders, the parade is over, their bikes are parked, and they are ready to start the party.

Showing her exhalation, this woman holds her arms out like she wants to give the whole city a big hug. A number of riders were caught doing this. People line the streets and cheer. There are even a number sitting on the canopy of the parking structure.

Testing out the footpegs. Of course, if he hits a bump, he risks a two octave change in his voice.

Who is this clown, and shouldn't he be riding a little motorcycle, or getting out of a little car?

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