10 Ways to Celebrate Harley-Davidson’s 115th Anniversary

Spectators, casual riders and lifelong Harley stans alike can enjoy street festivals, bike shows and live music during this hog-filled weekend.

Amid controversy about manufacturing motorcycles overseas, Milwaukee’s own Harley-Davidson is throwing what may be the biggest party the city has seen this century (or at least since their 110th anniversary in 2013). The motorcycle giant is sponsoring dozens of street parties, carnivals, concerts and more across the city for its 115th and even if you’re not a biker, we’re sure you’ll find something to do.


Veterans Park, 1010 N. Lincoln Memorial Dr.
Friday, August 31-Sunday, September 2

All weekend-long, Veterans Park is taken over by a motorcycle trapeze, helicopters taking passengers over the city skyline (for a fee), a Ferris wheel and numerous other homages to the Harley gods. Free live music from the likes of Royal Bliss, Blacktop Mojo and others will fill the park as well, drowning the sounds of bike engines on Friday and Saturday night and Sunday afternoon.      

photo courtesy of Visit Milwaukee

Brady Street Experience

Brady St. between Van Buren Ave. and Farwell Ave.
Friday August 31-Sunday, September 2

If you have a hog, you’re in luck, as Brady Street will close at 4 p.m. for motorcycle parking only. After, you can enjoy side street parties where drink deals and dining options are aplenty. And if you have enough energy left over on Sunday, “Biker Brunch” specials will descend on bars and restaurants from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Beach Brawl

Bradford Beach, 2400 N. Lincoln Dr.
Friday, August 31-Saturday, September 1

Instead of competitive beach volleyball, Bradford Beach will be dominated by motorcycles — for the first time in over 100 years. On Friday, racers will gear up for the competition, and on Saturday, hogs will go head to head. If spectating seems preferable to racing, the beach is open for swimming and the regular tiki bars will still be selling pricey drinks.

Party in the Park

Hart Park, 1190 N. 70th St., Wauwatosa
Friday, August 31-Saturday, September 1

Tosa welcomes a new crowd this weekend, offering motorcycle parking instead of spots for Priuses. Outdoor concessions serving food and alcohol will also be spread throughout the neighborhood’s main park with live music from local bands providing free entertainment.

Flat Out Friday

UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena, 400 W. Kilbourn St.
Friday, August 31

The Panthers’ stadium is transformed this weekend into an indoor racing haven where bikers will compete for pride and prizes in this ticketed event from 7-10 p.m. Before the indoor races, amateurs and professionals alike will compete in street races outside the stadium where food vendors, a whiskey bar and live music will entertain spectators.

Harley-Davidson Museum

400 W. Canal St.
Friday, August 31Sunday, September 2

The base camp of this busy anniversary weekend is the Harley-Davidson museum. All weekend, art vendors, barbers offering haircuts and beard trims, tattoo artists, stunt shows and more will overtake the grounds. Stunt shows and live music will also entertain crowds all weekend on the grounds outside of the museum.

photo courtesy of Visit Milwaukee


Wisconsin Ave., Downtown MKE
Sunday, September 2

Much to the likely chagrin of churchgoers, Harley riders will overtake the streets downtown this Sunday. The parade will kick off at 45th and Wisconsin at 1 p.m. and end at Veterans Park with riders brandishing hometown flags, customized bikes on display and stunt teams performing tricks.

Motorcycle Alley

5th St., south of W. Virginia St.
Friday, August 31-Saturday, September 1

Blocks of Walker’s Point will be closed off to create room for this “alley,” which features BMX demos, motorcycle-only parking, live music and drink vendors. Come anytime from noon to midnight to enjoy a beer — or a few — and grab a cheap taco at Conejito’s.

Motorcycle Film Festival

Oriental Theatre, 2230 Farwell Ave.
Friday, August 31-Saturday, September 1

This weekend, a four-film series about the history of motorcycle culture will take the place of regular programming. Purchase tickets ahead of time and note that the fourth film — Sugar and Spade — has live accompaniment.

Bikes on Broadway

Third Ward, E. St. Paul Ave. and Catalano Square Park
Saturday, September 1

From noon to 10 p.m., this Third Ward street party offers all-day live music on two stages, one at Catalano Square and the other at Blue Bat Kitchen & Tequileria on the riverwalk. Outdoor food and drink vendors will also be available and area business will be open with special discounts.



Since interning for the magazine in spring of 2017, Anna has contributed to both the print publication and website. She has covered topics from women in the workplace to communal gardens and also writes guides to life in Milwaukee. Outside of writing for the magazine, Anna is going back to school at UW-Milwaukee to work towards a career in genetic counseling.