The Parade

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

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A visitor from the Boston Chapter of HOG gets a shot of a huge crowd of riders and spectators.

A bit further down the street, at approximately Third and Wisconsin, people have crowded out onto the street, and made a bit of a choke point. Bikes here have to pass by two abreast.

The Wells Fargo bank stands on the other side of the Milwaukee River. Riders here are about to cross one of our crooked bridges.  Note the skywalk full of spectators.

There is quite the crowd gathered and motorcycles are having a hard time getting by all of the people. The police are trying to keep everyone back, but they are vastly out numbered, and no one wants any trouble. They do their best to keep us back without ruining anyone's fun.

A look up Wisconsin Avenue from the middle of downtown. The bikes are still coming, but they have a bit of a tight squeeze through ranks of welcoming spectators. We are on Wisconsin Avenue, at the river. The first street to the right is Plankington.

This is a six lane street, but motorcycles are passing two by two here. Note the police officer to the right of the flag in the middle of the photo. He is trying to keep people back, but they surge forward as soon as he moves past.

At the bridge across the river, people flock to stand out in the sun and cheer the riders on. One man holds up a sign stating that he will gladly work for a Harley. I wish him luck. New Harley motorcycles can only be bought after getting on a waiting list. A police officer, just to the left of the center of the photo, waves.

The bridges in downtown Milwaukee cross the river at sharp angles because the streets do not line up. There is actually a funny story behind this. In the early days of settlement, there were three trading posts which grew into small cities, on the site where Milwaukee now stands When these three towns were integrated into a single city, bridges were planned to link the cities across the river.

 Bridges built straight across would only line up with streets on one side of the river. People from each side of the river would construct  bridges which lined up with their own streets. These bridges would then be burned down by the people on the other side of the river. This period, know as the Bridge Wars, continued until someone had the good sense to simply build the bridges at an angle which connected streets on both sides.

A look towards the top of Wisconsin Avenue. The crowd of people standing across the road are at Milwaukee Street, where the parade takes a turn to the right.

Heading across the bridge over the Milwaukee River, reunion riders climb Wisconsin Avenue, passing under the banner of the founders of Harley Davidson.

Past the bridge, and on the way up the hill, you begin to get some idea of just how large the crowds were.

A look up the sidewalk is like a view of New York City at rush hour. Note the Harley banner, and the Harley signs hanging from each of the lamp posts.

People are gathered here in immense numbers, some having come the night before to pick out prime spots. Some have even brought lawn chairs, and have made themselves quite at home.

Another small group rumbles over the bridge. We are past the choke point, and officers here are doing a much better job of keeping the streets clear for the riders. It helps that the sidewalks are very wide here, and the area is much more open. You might recognize this as the same vantage I started out at during the 90th parade.

The Milwaukee Fire Department raises the banner of the Harley founders, and says hello.

Near the top of Wisconsin Avenue, some riders wait on their mounts for the end of the parade. There are riders positioned like this all through the parade route and on nearby side streets, they will crowd the streets after the parade has ended.

This is the corner of Milwaukee Street and Wisconsin Avenue. Here the parade route turns right making it's way south towards the Summerfest grounds. We are at the last mile.

A clown from New Zealand displays his flag along with the of the US.

A shot down Milwaukee Street, where the parade route turns south. The street and parking structures are full of people. This is a familiar sight to those who have seen previous reunion parades, but can make quite an impression on those who are here for the first time.

This couple rounds the corner looking like they can not believe what they are seeing. More people gathered everywhere.

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