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Take a Harley joyride!
Take a Harley joyride!

Take a free, six-mile ride on a new Harley-Davidson Roadster

Harley-Davidson launched a new concept in Milwaukee, Portland and Los Angeles today: a pop-up bike share that gives riders the chance to test out the new Dark Custom Harley-Davidson Roadster motorcycle.

In Milwaukee, the pop-up popped up in the Third Ward on Broadway today from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and will move to the H-D Museum Thursday and Friday with the same hours.

Free of charge, people with a valid motorcycle license can take a Roadster for a spin on a six-mile course that runs along the lakefront. Helmets are provided – and must be worn – if a rider does not bring one of their own.

"The concept was inspired by the bike shares in cities across the country," says Michael Spaeth, the Global Outreach Customer Segment Lead for Harley. "In the Harley bike share, the two-wheel pedal bike is replaced with a 1200cc V-twin motorcycle."

Spaeth says the new Roadster is ideal for people living in the city because of features like better front and rear suspension and greater ground clearance. An increased lean angle and aggressive stance that keeps the rider forward makes it great for cornering.

"It’s a phenomenal bike meant for the urban environment," says Spaeth.

The cost is about $7 a day, I’m told, so you can do the math. Of course, that does not include insurance.

My partner and OnMilwaukee contributor Royal Brevväxling, who owns a 1974 Harley FXE, took a Roadster for a spin today. "The forward riding position was a lot of fun – something different for me – and the suspension made riding down the pothole-riddled Prospect Avenue a breeze," said Brevväxling.

Because I do not have a motorcycle license (yet) I "rode" a stationary Harley mounted on a trailer that Mark McClain from House of Harley Davidson taught me how to start and shift through the gears. It was pretty thrilling, actually, and McClain says I was a natural, but he was maybe just being nice. Then again, I am a Milwaukee product, just like Harleys, so maybe I do have a biker gene.

Hard sodas go down easy.
Hard sodas go down easy.

Sprecher brews three new "hard sodas"

In late May, Sprecher Brewing Company will introduce three new "hard sodas": Hard Cherry Cola, Hard Orange Cream and Hard Cola. The local brewery already offers Hard Root Beer, Hard Ginger Ale and Hard Apple Pie.

"We were the first company to make ‘hard sodas.' Now Sprecher is expanding its line of these innovative beverages to supply the demands of customers for more variety in this exciting new category," says Jeff Hamilton, president of Sprecher.

Hard Sodas can be consumed from the bottle, poured into a float with custard or used as mixers in cocktails.

The hard sodas are packaged in six packs and cases of 12-ounce bottles as well as kegs. They will be available at the Sprecher Brewery Gift Shop and at liquor stores nationwide.

Obviously, these beverages – which are 4.6 percent ABV (alcohol by volume) – are for adults only. Sorry, kids.

Go Greyhounds.
Go Greyhounds. (Photo:

Shorewood honors famous grads

Some very talented and influential people have graduated from Shorewood High School (writes the author of this blog who also graduated from Shorewood High School), and in their honor the district will confer on a few former Greyhounds a Tradition of Excellence Award. (Not including the author of this blog.)

This year's honorees are Jim Abrahams, Jerry Harrison, David Zucker and Jerry Zucker. They will be recognized during a special day-long event in Shorewood on Thursday, May 19.

Abrahams and the Zuckers are filmmakers best known for movies "Airplane!," "Kentucky Fried Movie" and "Naked Gun." Harrison is a musician and producer who was the keyboardist and guitarist for The Talking Heads. He was also an original member of the band The Modern Lovers.

Tradition of Excellence activities include a tour of the high school campus during the day, as well as a Shorewood Alumni Association sponsored reception in the evening from 5 to 7 p.m. and a special awards ceremony during intermission at the opening night of the Shorewood musical production, "South Pacific," from 7 to 9 p.m.

Families and community members who attend the opening night of the South Pacific musical production will also have the opportunity to see the honorees recognized. 

The Shorewood Alumni Association reception will be held at Hubbard Park Lodge and is open to current Alumni Association members, new members and Shorewood parents and friends of the Alumni Association. Tickets can be purchased here.

For more information about the Shorewood Tradition of Excellence Awards, please contact Katelin Watson at or Ted Knight at

For more information about the Shorewood Alumni Association sponsored reception, contact

While on the subject of famous SHS graduates, actress Charlotte Rae, who starred in the TV show "The Facts of Life," was recently interviewed by OnMilwaukee.

Get ready Bay View: Urban will finally open.
Get ready Bay View: Urban will finally open.

Urban Bay View set to soft open next weekend

After a year of hard work, Paul Jonas – who also owns Tonic Tavern – is ready to share his bar, Urban Bay View, 2301 S. Logan Ave., with the public.

OnMilwaukee got a sneak peek at the space a few months ago. The bar, formerly Gerry’s Diamond Tap, was completely rehabbed.

Milwaukee Record reported earlier today that the soft opening will take place this Friday, May 20, but according to manager Paul Kennedy, the license should be obtained no later than Wednesday and the soft opening will either be Friday or Saturday.

"My guess is Friday, but it could be Saturday, too," says Kennedy.

Stay tuned to OnMilwaukee for more information when it becomes available.