Media Press Day at Progressive International Motorcycle Show (IMS) in Long Beach, California

The Progressive International Motorcycle Show (IMS) kicks off in Long Beach, California before traveling across the United States to New York, Dallas, Cleveland, Minneapolis, Washington, D.C and Chicago http://www.motorcycleshows.com/.

IMS is the perfect place to see, listen, touch and test ride the various motorcycle brands, to purchase products and obtain resourceful information for motorcycle riders, passengers and future motorcycle riders.

Electric was the common theme throughout IMS this year. The future of personal mobility is driven by electrification. The industry is introducing newbies to motorcycles with no clutch and no gears.

The United States of America will need to get ready to build an infrastructure for electric bicycles and electric motorcycles.

DISCOVER THE RIDE and NEW TO 2

Robert Pandya and his team took the motorcycle industry back to basics by introducing Discover the Ride and New to 2 for children and adults.

The purpose of Discover the Ride is to put people on motorcycles for the first time at IMS with STACYC, Yamaha Power Assist Bicycles and Zero Motorcycles. The goal is to widen the funnel and encourage people of all ages to become motorcycle riders.

STACYC is the first powered balance bike to inspire children who has been walking for a short time. STACYC offers different models for ages 3-7 years of age. The goal is to engage young children with using a throttle and fall in love with motorcycle riding before the age of seven (7).

Individuals with no motorcycle riding experience were required to ride a Yamaha Power Assist Electric Bicycle to demonstrate their ability to balance before test riding a Zero Motorcycle. Total Control Training partnered with Robert’s team to provide safety instructors to shepherd new riders at IMS.

I had the pleasure of witnessing Discover the Ride at IMS with a first time motorcycle rider and it works!

Zero Motorcycles provides a sense of effortlessness just by a simple twist of the throttle without a clutch, gears and low maintenance. The zero motorcycle is speed limited for test riding to about 12 mph for safety reasons and to allow instructors to have a conversation with riders during the test ride on a test track inside the building at IMS.

New to 2 is a video and stage series designed to answer questions for new riders from visiting a local dealer to making a choice of the type of motorcycle to purchase.

Yamaha has been making electric bicycles in Japan for more than 25 years. Yamaha is the first pedal assist bicycle manufacturer. The electric bicycle is huge in Europe and starting to grow in the United States of America. Yamaha is starting out with four (4) models from mountain bike, drop bar, road bike and fitness commuting bike. The Yamaha Power Assist Electric Bicycle serves as the step in between STACYC and Zero. There is a cross over from the motorcycle culture to power assist electric bicycles and motorcycles. If it wasn’t for the bicycle, there would not be motorcycles!

      TRIUMP MOTORCYCLES

Triumph Motorcycles introduced Scrambler 1200 XE and Scrambler 1200 XC. The Scrambler 1200 XC is good for on and off road riding and the 1200 XE the “E” is for extreme. These adventure motorcycles have rider modes rain, road, sport and off road. Cruise control is standard. The 1200 XE is the first Scrambler with a 21 inch front wheel. Bluetooth accessory to communicate directly with GoPro camera to take picture and video and collaboration with Google to allow turn by turn navigation on display. The price of the Scrambler 1200 will be introduced to the United States in December 2018.

Triumph Motorcycles received the 2018 Motorcycle.com Standard Motorcycle of the Year for the Triumph Street Triple 765.

HARLEY DAVIDSON MOTORCYCLES

Harley Davidson announced they are celebrating 115 years of motorcycling and the celebration of 28 new dealerships across the globe in 2018. 4.9% growth in Europe and unprecedented growth in Thailand, China and Asia. Harley-Davidson is focusing on growing the number of riders in the United States to 2 million riders by 2027. On July 30, 2018, more roads to Harley Davidson was established more roads to access of the information to the media about the bikes about to be sold. Harley Davidson is investing $800 million into the strategy to help the United States grow 2 million riders in nine (9) more years.

Harley Davidson is starting an electric vehicle portfolio and continue to innovate their touring and soft-tail motorcycles. They will add a low cc motorcycle segment. They will expand their visibility and marketing to capture new riders. They will work with their dealerships across the globe to ensure their dealerships are an inviting place to capture new and current riders.
The Milwaukee-Eight 117 engine will be included on touring CVO Street Glide, Road Glide and Limited. These will always get the biggest engine instead of the Milwaukee-Eight 114 engine.

Harley Davidson also upgraded their infotainment system on the touring models. The new version is called the Boom! Box GTS Infotainment system include a touch screen with faster download and processing time and it has Apple Car Play compatible for iPhone users, but does not include Android Auto.

On display for presentation on the Softail side was the Harley Davidson FXDR 114. This is the 10th Softail motorcycle in just 15 months with the focus on weight reduction starting with cast aluminum swing arm, which provides a 43% reduction in weight.

The first Harley Davidson electric motorcycle the LiveWire was not on display. LiveWire specifications will be available in January 2019 and on sale in August 2019.

URAL MOTORCYCLES

Ural Motorcycles is now in the 20th century with modernized power plant, redesigned thermal group from cylinders and pistons to combat the air cooled function of the motor, increased fin size fins were added and increased the fins size, new oil pick up design to give another ½ liter of oil due to deeper oil pan, fuel injection system, the spare hub and wheels all match with larger spokes, on the motorcycle for simple plug and ride. Ural has been working very hard to keep the look and the opportunity for big kids to feel like little kids.

Ural also has its first electric motorcycle concept not, yet a production prototype established in Moscow in 2016. The goal is to collect feedback, to understand what the market wants and how the market reacts to it and if Ural should continue to move forward with the project. Zero Motorcycles is providing engineering support to Ural. The battery is inside the seat in the sidecar, which feels like there is always a rider in the sidecar for balance, comfort, safety and confidence. There are two batteries one located on the bike and one on the sidecar. The motorcycle will not operate if the sidecar is removed due to the battery under the seat. The production date is not available.

BMW

BMW is on tract for another year of record growth, which is driven by a lot of the new products such as the G 310 R and G 310 GS. The focus overtime in making sure they bring on products for the market and customers and focus on adding more standard equipment and improving the packages to their motorcycles and features their customers are asking for.

The BMW 700 products helped bring a lot of new riders to the sport with 37% of the product sales to women.

BMW unveiled the 2019 R 1250 GS with shift cam technology to give more increase power, increase torque and balance delivery for every situation.

BMW unveiled the 2019 S 1000 RR. The engine is 9lbs lighter and the overall bike is 25lbs lighter with increased horsepower. The new S 2019 S 1000 R superbike with M package was also unveiled with a weight decrease of 7lbs and motorsports paint.

INDIAN MOTORCYCLE

Indian Motorcycle decided to talk about something different than new products after mentioning the FTR 1200 was unveiled in Germany this year. The FTR 1200 won 17 of the 18 American Flat Track races in 2018. Jared Mees captured grand national championships and Indian Motorcycle capturing manufacturers championships in both seasons. Racing has a significance importance to the Indian Motorcycle brand because it started in racing in 1901. The 2019 Indian Motorcycle Wrecking Crew was introduced Jared Mees and brothers Briar and Bronson Bauman.

MV AGUSTA

MV Agusta introduced the 2019 Brutale 1000 and the 2019 Turisom Veloce RC SCS.

The Brutale was first introduced to the market in 2002. It is the most powerful superbike. The main principle in Brutale is power. 212 horsepower on a naked bike weighing about 409lbs. All of the body work except for the fuel tank is carbon fiber. The Brutale is an emotional motorcycle with a lot of power and street legal.

MV Agusta was one of the first companies to provide unique technology to the motorcycle world. For example, MV Agusta is the first company to put an electronic upshift on a production motorcycle, the first company to put an upshift and downshift on a production motorcycle, the first company to have Full Ride By Wire on a mid-weight super sport motorcycle. They have a new first, the first production motorcycle with a Smart Clutch System (SCS) on the 2019 Turismo Veloce RC SCS to allow riders to use either manual or automatic clutch operation. Riders never have to touch the clutch lever. Riders don’t have to worry up using the clutch lever while moving through traffic. The bike weight is 435lbs with 110 horse power and goes from 0 to 60mph in 3.1 seconds. MV Agusta is about performance not touring.

YAMAHA

Yamaha introduced nine (9) new models for 2019 in the three (3) main categories of dirt, road and tour. The focus is to continue to offer a wide range of new and exciting motorcycles with the latest in performance and technology for riders of all ages and skill levels.

Niken and Niken GT multiple wheel motorcycle handles like a two (2) wheel motorcycle offers motorcycle riders a lot more confidence while cornering to make riding less stressful and fun.

Yamaha sold out of Niken motorcycles after opening an online reservation program in September 2018.

The Niken GT is open for online reservations with a retail price of $17,2999 for delivery in March 2019.

PIAGGIO

The 2019 Moto Guzzi V85 TT was introduced and it will be available from Italy in the 2nd Quarter of 2019.

The world superbike was also on display 2019 Aprilla RSV4 RR Factory 1000. This motorcycle has won multiple world championships and work superbike.
Piaggio is the only manufacturer that is up for scooters sales.

KAWASAKI

Kawakaki introduced their super charged hyper sports bike Ninja H2, H2R and H2 Carbon. The new H2R is the most powerful super charged engine Kawasaki has made to date. Also on display was the ZX-10R with new engine design and maximum performance. The Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10 RR is a race ready limited model with only 500 available in the world.

2019 Kawasaki Versys 1000 SE LT Plus was unveiled with cruise control, traction control, intelligent braking system, sport, road, rain and manual modes. There will be a Rideology app available in 2019 to allow riders to make adjustments from the palm of their hands on their Android or iPhones devices to check fuel gage, service intervals and riding module to identify routes taken and for planning.

HONDA

Honda shared one of the best historical videos about their founder and the brand for more than 60 years. The video started with a picture of the first American Honda Motor building on Pico Blvd in Los Angeles, California from June 1959 and a quote from the founder Soichiro Honda “A company is most clearly defined not by its people or its history, but by its products.”

The Honda Monkey is selling out like hotcakes because it’s a fun motorcycle to ride for 1,200 miles on land, through water and mud just ask Ari Herring and Zack Courts. Ari and Zack rode Honda Monkeys from Ensenada to La Paz Mexico to trace some of the Baja 1000 course. Motorcycle enthusiast can check out their show at Motorcycles on Motor Trend: Throttle Out http://bit.ly/2FmWUEq on November 21, 2018.

PROGRESSIVE

Progressive is number one in motorcycle insurance due to customer service with policies starting off at just $75.00 per year. Progressive partnered up with Indian Motorcycle to give away an all expense paid trip to Sturgis with two loaner Indian motorcycles for winners to ride. 

Flo’s Chop Shop offered relaxation break in massage chairs while listening to an interactive music play list created by guest, beard trims, line ups and hair designs for free.

ENERGICA

Engergica approach motorcycles in 2009 and decided later to go green. In 2014, Energica created an electric motorcycle as an opportunity to attract the younger generation. Today, the Energica Ego is known to the world for the first street legal electric Italian sport motorcycle. Engergica’s focus is on style performance and quality and they are living up to it with the ability to charge an electric motorcycle within 20-22 minutes!

SUZUKI

Industry gearhead and living legend Kevin Cameron provided history of Suzuki. Mr. Cameron has decades of experience in the motorcycle industry from racing to technology, product development and product evaluation.

Mr. Cameron shared his knowledge and history about Katana motorcycles, 2 stroke engines, 4 stroke engines, horsepower, crankshaft seizure, piston seizure problem in 2 stroke engines, connecting rod, combustion, cylinder plating and oil consumption. Mr. Cameron expressed the greatest problem facing product development is the internal friction of large human groups, engineers wasting times on committees and in meetings. It’s important for the motorcycle industry to allow engineers to devote their time to designs and test prototypes.

LUNCH

Black Girls Ride Magazine Porsche Taylor, Founder and Editor-In-Chief and Sarah Moreau, Staff Writer enjoyed lunch sponsored by Suzuki with Serena Bleeker, Digital Campaign Manager, Bonner Motorcycle Group and Julian Eger, Communications, http://Motorcycles.org aka Discover Today’s Motorcycling.

DUCATI

Ducati delivered the highest level of market share, which demonstrates taking the brand into new worlds with cruiser and off road motorcycles.

The Scrambler Café Racer is one of the most popular motorcycles with LED light and fuel gage for first time motorcycle riders at a reasonable Ducati price.

ALLSTATE

Allstate Insurance offered guest to Float In and Fill Up on a Free Root Beer Float and the opportunity for current, new and future rides to enjoy an interactive virtual reality motorcycle ride on an Indian Scout.

IMS is a one stop shop for motorcycle riders and passengers and a great place to network, catch up with old friends and plan a future ride within or outside the country.


 

Halfway House Café in Canyon Country, California

Halfway House Café is located on Sierra Highway in Canyon Country halfway between Los Angeles and Palmdale. In 1906, this location was a trading post before operating as a restaurant in 1931. This restaurant has been in numerous commercials, television shows and movies. The restaurant is open every day from 6:00am to 3:00pm and only closes for special filming requests. Parking is available in front and behind the restaurant.

We were genuinely greeted by staff the moment we walked inside.  Each table inside the restaurant has the Halfway House Café logo in the center with advertisements from various companies outlining the edges.

We were seated at a comfortable table for four.
The menu includes a list of commercials, television shows and movies filmed at the Halfway House Café and there is a television inside the restaurant with recorded clippings for guest to watch while enjoying a meal.

We enjoyed coffee, hot chocolate with whipped topping and apple pie à la mode.

The staff are friendly and down to earth. One of the waitresses made homemade fudge and shared samples with us. It was delicious!

Inside the ladies restroom are two toilets with no dividing wall for privacy and one sink. There is a toilet paper dispenser on the wall and the other is between the toilets.

There are pictures with uplifting and comical affirmations including a great quote by Lucille Ball “The secret of staying young is to live honestly, eat slowly and lie about your age.”

Overall the restaurant is a great place to visit if you want to enjoy vintage history.

 

Roar and Snore Campout at San Diego Zoo Safari Park

Motorcycle riders like us enjoy the outdoors. So why not campout at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park to support conservation research and science to save species worldwide?

San Diego Zoo Safari Park is a wildlife sanctuary that is home to more than 3,000 animals on 1,800 acres of land.  On October 2, 1916, Dr. Harry M. Wegeforth founded the not-for-profit organization San Diego Zoo Global that operates the San Diego Zoo, the San Diego Zoo Safari and the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conversation Research.

Wear comfortable walking shoes and stay on the trail paths at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park for your safety to avoid an encounter with snakes and other animals.

There are several activities to choose from to enhance your experience. We chose the two (2) hour Caravan Safari Adventure.

We had the opportunity to feed Giraffes acacia tree leaves, touch and feed a Rhino apple slices.



We also had a quick glance of the fastest recorded animal on land running, the Cheetah. The Cheetah run is held once a day at 3:30pm. It is highly recommended to arrive at least 30 minutes early for a good spot to see the Cheetah run in the direction towards you or you can pay $15.00 for reserved viewing in front of the crowd. 

Roar and Snore occurs from February through November between the hours of 4:15pm through 9:30am. It is worth noting there is an adult only Roar and Snore option for ages 21 and up. There are three tent options classic tent suitable for five (5) people, vista tent suitable for six (6) and premium tent sleeps up a family of four. The premium tent includes a queen size bed, two cots, bed linens, pillows, electrical outlets, wood floors and area rug.

We had to stand in line to check in promptly at 4:15pm to receive wrist bands and our tent number, which allowed staff to deliver our belongings to our classic tent before sunset.



After checking in, we received a cute plastic water pouch with instructions to fill up with water while we wait for camp guide leader to walk us to the campsite area for dinner.

Electrical outlets are available in common areas of the campsite to charge mobile phones, laptops or other small devices. Portable chargers with full charge are available to purchase from a kiosk in the park for $30.00.

The dinner menu included roasted chicken, tri-tip, mash potatoes, grilled portobello mushrooms with vegetables was the alternative option for vegetarians, green salad with only ranch dressing, black bean and corn salad. The food was delicious and there was enough food for a second serving.

Non-alcoholic beverages included lemonade, iced tea and iced water.

There was full bar service with professional bartenders to serve a variety of adult beverages with outstanding customer service. The price range was $5.00 to $9.00 for mixed drinks and the option to pay with cash, debit or credit card.


The bar menu offered a bucket of beer or bottle of wine delivery to your tent with plastic cups for $28.00.

Coca Cola products were available for purchase in a vending machine included Coke, Diet Coke, Sprite and Powerade.

S’mores was the treat after dinner! We quickly gathered our ingredients of graham crackers, marshmallows and Hershey’s milk chocolate and campfire roasting sticks to make our marshmallows gooey for the perfect S’mores!

In 1927, S’mores was called a Graham Cracker Sandwich in publication called Tramping and Trailing with the Girl Scouts. National S’mores Day is celebrated in the United States of America on August 10th.

Our camp guide escorted us on a behind the scenes 2-mile exclusive walking tour on the Tiger Trail.

Before arriving to the Tiger keeper area, we had a learning session about the Tawny Frogmouth bird.  Most people including myself thought the bird was an owl. The Tawny Frogmouth is a predator in the Night Hawk family that survive off mice, lizards and spiders.
Inside the Tiger keeper area, we were able to see a video camera always on display to monitor tiger’s activity, tiger’s activity board, a hard-plastic ball destroyed by tigers’ teeth, food, which included ground beef feline diet and iced blood inside a Bundt cake pan.


We return to the campsite for snacks hot buttery popcorn, cookies fresh from the oven, hot chocolate and coffee to warm up before the 11:00pm lights out schedule.

There are clean and heated gender specific restrooms on the campsite with hot running water, flushing toilets, one with and without showers.

The restroom without showers have more stalls and fancy outdoor sinks with mirrors.  Make sure you take your flashlight with you for late night restroom visits to avoid a possible encounter with wildlife in the dark.

I strongly suggest sleeping in layers with onesie pajamas, gloves and a face mask because it gets cold at night during the fall season…lol

We went to sleep and woke up to the lions roaring at approximately 5:00am prior to the two wake up calls of 6:15am and 6:45am, to ensure everyone leaves the campsite promptly at 9:30am. We packed up our camping gear and place it outside our tent for staff to pick up before our morning walk to see the lions on the way to breakfast at 7:00am.


Breakfast included pancakes, cheese omelets, potatoes, sausage and vegie sausage, pears, apples, orange juice, milk, coffee and hot chocolate.

We walk less than a mile to get on a tram. We ride through the park and observe the vibrant activity of the animals before our amazing journey ends.


 

THE BROAD MUSEUM

Motorcycle Ride to the Broad Museum was worth splitting lanes through downtown Los Angeles rush hour traffic.

The Broad Museum is one of the most popular FREE museums in Los Angeles. That’s right it’s FREE to enter the Broad Museum so make sure to request tickets in advance because sometimes there is a long line wrapped around the corner to get in. It’s the perfect place to capture an Instagram moment in every gallery thanks to self-made billionaire Eli Broad.

On August 23, 2010, Eli Broad announced he will build a museum in downtown Los Angeles to house contemporary art he and his wife Edythe collected over the years. The amount financed for the Broad Museum was $140 million.

The Broad Museum is home to more than 2,000 pieces of art inside a three-story building surrounded by a unique honeycomb square that allows natural sunlight to shine throughout the gallery. The contemporary art consists of pictures and paintings coveted by other museums. The goal of the Broad Museum is to make contemporary art accessible to visitors. There is a thick viewing glass window for visitors to get a sneak peak of the warehouse full of art not on display in the art gallery showrooms, which I hope to see in the near future.

My favorite piece of art at the Broad Museum was the Seated Woman by Ron Mueck because the detail made the miniature woman look real. I was stuck. I did not want to move my feet. I could not stop staring at this amazing sculpture.

Infinity Mirrored Room – The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away by Yayoi Kusama is very popular among visitors. Each visitor is given 45 seconds behind a closed door to spend time inside the Infinity Mirrored Room. Have your camera ready to strike a pose and take a selfie!

Under the Table by Robert Therrien – Grab a seat and let’s enjoy a very small bite to eat in the Giant’s den…

The eyes are creepy on the porcelain sculpture of Michael Jackson and his chimpanzee Bubbles by Jeff Koons…

Roe v. Wade 1973 Supreme Court decision was addressed in a powerful and political art statement (Untitled) Your Body is a Battleground by artist, activist and feminist Barbara Kruger.

It was really cool to see Jean-Michel Basquiat’s paintings on display. This one is titled Melting Point of Ice. Unfortunately, Jean-Michel Basquiat committed suicide at the young age of 27.
If you decide to visit the Broad Museum, download the Broad mobile app available for iPhone and Android to serve as an audio guide.

A huge thank you to Rick Mitchell for a private tour of the Broad Museum.

MOTORCYCLE RIDERS AND PASSENGERS TAKE CARE OF YOUR EARS SO YOU CAN HEAR

Let’s take a moment of silence to address the responsibility of maintaining a rider fit lifestyle in a world with wind noise, loud pipes, loud music and headphones while riding a motorcycle with no hearing protection in the inner ear.

If you lose your hearing, you can’t get it back.

I made an appointment with an Audiologist to check my hearing after riding motorcycles cross country for more than ten years. The Audiologist conducted a few tests inside a soundproof room. The first test was an Otoscopy to check for ear wax and blockages and the final test was the Audiometry where I had to push a button when I hear sound through earphones.

Luckily for me my hearing is within the normal range.

Wind noise from turbulence is the primary causes of irreversible damage resulting in hearing loss when hearing protection is not worn inside the ears. Wind noise take the reins over the sound of loud pipes and loud music with or without a helmet. Hearing loss from noise may occur with one time exposure from an intense sound such as an explosion or from an activity such as motorcycle riding over a long period of time.

Turbulence is the primary source of the wind moving around your body or into your helmet at high speeds. The faster you ride the more severe the sound of wind noise due to turbulence.

Hearing protection such as earplugs or earmolds can suppress sound when worn during motorcycle rides.

There is not a 100% guarantee hearing protection will prevent hearing loss.

Some options available to reduce wind noise while riding a motorcycle are earplugs, earmolds, head/face mask to cover ears, windshield and specialized helmets.

The least expensive option to reduce wind noise are disposable earplugs available for purchase over the counter. It is important to adhere to state laws regarding earplugs http://www.americanmotorcyclist.com/Rights/State-Laws-Database. For example, in the state of California motorcycle riders wearing earplugs must be able to hear a siren or horn from an emergency vehicle or horn from another motor vehicle.

Earmolds are professionally designed to the impression inside your ear and ear canal.

Head/Face mask to cover ears with ear plugs or ear molds may provide additional protection.

Windshields may block wind depending on the size and height of the shield and rider.

A few helmet manufacturers such as Shuberth, Shoei, Shark, HJC and Arai design aerodynamic quiet helmets with a snug fit to address turbulence and to reduce the chances of wind flowing through vents, visors, around the neck and under the chin.

Ride smart and protect your hearing.

MOTORCYCLE RIDE TO THE BOYHOOD HOME OF ALEX HALEY

It was a peaceful motorcycle ride on the backroads of Henning, Tennessee to pay respect to Alexander Murray Palmer Haley aka Alex Haley, the African American author of Pulitzer Prize winning novel Roots translated into 37 languages, the Autobiography of Malcom X translated into eight (8) languages, Palmer Town, Madam Walker, A Different Kind of Christmas, Queen, Henning and Fred Montgomery. Most people do not know Alex Haley’s first screenplay was Super Fly.

Alex Haley’s boyhood home is the first state-owned historic site devoted to African-Americans in Tennessee.
The home is in a quiet neighborhood and it was owned by his grandparents Will and Cynthia Palmer.

Alex Haley lived with his grandparents from 1921 through 1929. It was on the front porch where young Alex Haley would listen to the accounts about his family history to include the stories of his West African roots and the famous Mandingo Kunta Kinte.

Alex Haley is buried in the front yard of his boyhood home.

I enjoyed walking around the outside of the home with beautiful black and white picture monuments and brief descriptions about his family.

While admiring Alex Haley’s home Porsche Taylor, Founder and Editor-In-Chief, Black Girls Ride Magazine http://blackgirlsride.com/ and I had the opportunity to meet the former Mayor of Henning Mary Ann Jarrett. Ms. Jarrett served as mayor from 2001 through 2005.

Alex Haley contribution to the African American community is invaluable. His legacy reminds us of the importance to uplift and honor our roots with dignity.

BICYCLE RIDE ON THE BALLONA CREEK BIKE TRAIL

The Ballona Creek Bike Trail is a great place to ride if you are trying to build up your endurance to ride up hills since there are some steep hills and ramps to enter and exit.

My 17 mile bicycle ride on my Giant Cypress DX started on the Metro train located at the Western/Exposition station to downtown Santa Monica.

It’s a beautiful feeling to exit the train, walk down a ramp straight to the bicycle trail with a clear view of the Santa Monica Pier entrance.

Every Sunday volunteers with Veterans for Peace set out hundreds of crosses on the beach in Santa Monica to honor the cost of war and to remind beach goers about the sacrifices veterans made for independence. The memorial is also referred to as Arlington West, a nod to Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia. Veterans for Peace was founded in 1985 to bring together veterans interested in working toward alternatives to war.

In the 1930s the Ballona Creek flood control was channelized in concrete to reduce the inflow of salt water to what is now one of the last significant wetlands areas in the Los Angeles basin. The entrances to the bike trail are locked when there is a possibility of substantial rain because the creek waters rise quickly and may submerge on portions of the trail.

The Ballona Creek Bike Trail starts in Marina Del Rey and ends in Culver City.

The Ballona Creek Bike Trail is open year-round to walkers, joggers and skaters. I recommend riding the trail during day light hours as there are limited lights on the trail for night riding and it’s a safe place to ride a bicycle without the presence of eScooters!

SAGUARO CACTUS HUG ON THE OPEN ROAD IN ARIZONA

I feel like I’m receiving hugs from the beautiful Saguaro cacti every time I ride my motorcycle through the Arizona desert.

The Saguaro Cactus is the largest cactus in the United States of America. In Arizona, the Saguaro Cactus is protected by the Native Plant Protection Act . If you are smart, do not touch cactus in Arizona to avoid a class four (4) felony.  You could pay a fine, go to jail or serve time in prison for cutting, vandalizing, shooting, digging up, ramming with vehicle, illegally purchasing or poaching the protected Arizona symbol.

The Saguaro Cactus develops slowly. It takes 3 to 10 days for Saguaro Cactus seeds to germinate. It can take approximately 10 years to grow 1.5 inches before it reaches its full height of 50 feet and weigh more than 4,000 lbs. It usually takes 75 years for a Saguaro Cactus to grow a branch often referred to as an arm. The Saguaro Cactus can live for up to 200 years.

Do your research before you purchase a Saguaro Cactus because it may have microchip to identify a stolen plant.  Make sure you purchase a Saguaro Cactus from an approved supplier. The cost of a Saguaro Cactus depends on the size. Some saguaro cactus can be sold for $100.00 per foot. The Saguaro Cactus are usually sold by approved garden centers or online distributors from $5.00 to $2,500.00.

ARIZONA REVISED STATUTE 3-932

A.   A person commits theft of protected native plants if, without the express consent of the landowner, the person knowingly removes or destroys any protected native plants from private or state land. Theft of protected native plants with a value of:

       1. One thousand five hundred dollars or more is a class 4 felony.

      2. At least seven hundred fifty dollars but less than one thousand five                         hundred dollars is a class 5 felony.

      3. At least five hundred dollars but less than seven hundred fifty dollars is a           class 6 felony.

      4.  Less than five hundred dollars is a class 1 misdemeanor.

B.   A knowing violation of this chapter involving either the misuse of permits, tags, seals, or receipts, or the collection, salvage, harvest, transportation or possession of protected plants without any required permits, tags, seals or receipts is a class 1 misdemeanor. A subsequent conviction for a violation of this subsection is a class 6 felony.

C.  All other violations of this chapter are class 3 misdemeanors except that if a prior conviction is a class 3 misdemeanor, a subsequent conviction is a class 2 misdemeanor, and if a prior conviction is a class 2 misdemeanor, a subsequent conviction is a class 1 misdemeanor.

D.  From and after June 30, 1990, on conviction of any violation of this chapter the director may request of the court that the convicted person, or a responsible person from a convicted entity, be ordered to attend educational classes or programs pursuant to section 3-911, subsection C.

E.  On conviction of a violation of this chapter, the director may also request of the court as a provision of the sentence, the revocation of all permits issued to the person convicted and the permittee shall be required to surrender any unused tags or seals or receipts to the division, and the division shall not issue new or additional permits to the permittee for a period of one year from the date of conviction. The director may further request of the court that the sentence include a provision prohibiting a person convicted of a violation of this chapter from engaging in the salvage of protected native plants or acting as agent for any other permittee for a period of up to one year. In considering any such request to revoke or deny permits or prohibit work in salvage or with another permittee the court shall consider:

1.   The nature of the offense.

2.  The nature of any prior convictions

3. The overall performance record by the convicted party in terms of its                      violations of this chapter compared to its efforts to salvage native plants            as intended by this chapter.

LABOR DAY INCLUDES BLACK HISTORY IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Motorcycle ride to Memphis, Tennessee where two black sanitation workers  – Echol Cole age 36 and Robert Walker age 30 were crushed to death in a garbage truck compactor on Thursday, February 1, 1968 about 4:30pm.

April 3, 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. marched in Memphis, Tennessee to support the strike of black sanitation workers for equal pay and better working conditions. Some black sanitation workers were not allowed to catch the bus, so they had to walk because their employer would not allow them to wash off the stench of trash in a sink like their white co-workers after working 9 hours per day for $1.25 per day.

April 4, 1968 – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee.

BRIEF BLACK HISTORY LABOR MOVEMENT TIMELINE

1844 – It is worth noting the state of Oregon ordered all black people to get out since it was the first state to make Labor Day a holiday in 1887.  Slave holders in Oregon could keep their slaves for up to three years. All free blacks including slaves had to leave Oregon. Those who refused to leave could be severely whipped not less than 20 or more 29 stripes to be repeated every six (6) months until they left.  Black women were given three (3) years to leave and black men were given two (2) years to leave under a law called the Peter Burnett’s Lash Law . When Peter Burnett became the first Governor of California, his push for the exclusion of black people in California was defeated https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/retropolis/wp/2017/06/07/when-portland-banned-blacks-oregons-shameful-history-as-an-all-white-state/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.83c5932648f2.

1850 – Samuel Ringgold Ward organized the first black American labor union in New York, New York called the American League of Colored Laborers (ALCL) http://www.blackpast.org/aah/american-league-colored-laborers-1850 for skilled free craftsmen and to encourage African American business to develop agricultural and industrial skills.

1850 – White ship caulkers went on strike and started a riot against the well unionized black ship caulkers because they were sometimes paid more than them due to collective bargaining with Baltimore shipyard owners. The shipyard owners fired approximately 1,000 black workers including Isaac Myers http://www.blackpast.org/aah/myers-isaac-1835-1891 who was born a free black in Baltimore, Maryland in 1835. At the age of 16, he started working as a Ship Caulker. After Myers was fired in 1850 along with other black ship caulkers, he and other black laborers established the Chesapeake Marine Railway and the Dry Dock Company to employ themselves.

1865 – Blacks legally freed as slaves had a difficult time finding paid employment and joining unions including blacks in white-collar professions such as the first black lawyer Macon Bolling Allen http://www.blackpast.org/aah/allen-macon-bolling-1816-1894 and the first black doctor James McCune Smith http://www.blackpast.org/aah/smith-james-mccune-1813-1865. Some free blacks worked in blue-collar jobs such as servants, laborers, farm workers, artisans and caulkers.

1869 – African Americans established the Colored National Labor Union (CNLU) to improve working conditions and quality of life for its members collectively on a national level and public education with equal opportunities for blacks. Isaac Meyers became the first president of the CNLU. The CNLU included all races, genders, or occupations.

1872 – Fredrick Douglas http://www.blackpast.org/aah/douglass-frederick-1817-1895 became the second president of the Colored National Labor Union

1887 – Oregon was the first state to make Labor Day a holiday.

1894 – Labor Day became a Federal Holiday after a strike led by the American Railway Union also referred to as the Pullman Strike. Black Pullmans had to continue working because they were not allowed to join the union.

1925 – the Brotherhood of the Sleeping Car Porters  was established, and the first president of the union was Asa Philip Randolph http://www.blackpast.org/aah/randolph-asa-philip-1889-1979. This was the first union to receive a charter in the American Federation of Labor  known today as the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO).

1940 – the International Association of Machinist union known to today as the International Association of Machinist and Aerospace Workers (IAM) banned segregation.

1942 – Executive Order 8802 https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/history/35th/thelaw/eo-8802.html was created by President Franklin D. Roosevelt to address pay inequality based on gender and race.

1943 – the National War Labor Board issued an order to abolish pay differentials based on race because America thought it was necessary for the Negro to work so America can win World War II.

 

EUROPE IS THE RECORD HOLDER FOR THE WORLD’S LARGEST ALL FEMALE BIKER MEET

The World’s Largest All Female Motorcycle Meet was organized by Sherrie Woolf and Nimi Patel.

In 2017, the world record was set with 1,132 female motorcycle riders.  Female motorcycle riders in Australia and the United States of America (USA) did attempt to break the record. The total count for Australia was 1,002 and 808 for the USA. On July 29, 2018, the goal was to reach more than 1,200 female motorcycle riders to set a new world record.

In February 2018, Porsche Taylor, Founder and Editor In Chief, Black Girls Ride Magazine http://blackgirlsride.com sent me a Facebook invitation to the World’s Largest All Female Motorcycle Meet. I’m so glad I accepted the invitation.  Porsche and I traveled from Los Angeles, California to London, England. It took us 3 ½ hours to get to Lynn’s Raven Café in Whitchurch, England for the count.

It was an honor to finally meet Sherrie in person after following her journey on Facebook.
Sherrie kept individuals engaged on Facebook throughout the year with sponsor, vendor and charity information and introduced the group to international adventure motorcycle riders Zoe Cano https://www.zoecano.com/ and Steph Jeavons https://stephjeavons.com/.

Steph is the first person from Britain to ride on all seven continents and through 53 countries on a Honda CRF250L. Steph’s motorcycle ride started in March 2014 from London. She returned home in 2018.

Zoe rode her classic Triumph Bonneville T100 solo across the American Continent after receiving her motorcycle endorsement with less than 100 riding miles under her belt in 2012.

Sherry wants to keep raising the number of female motorcycle riders and to raise the profile of female bikers to let manufactures know we are out here. Sherry notices the improvement in gear available for female motorcycle riders over the last few years. One of Sherry’s favorite motorcycle gear providers is MotoGirl https://motogirl.co.uk/.  A lot of the female motorcycle riders at the event were wearing MotoGirl leggings.

Sherrie let Porsche and I borrow a couple of her motorcycles to participate in the ride for the count. Porsche was number 433 and I was number 434. The official count for 2019 was 443. The low turnout was due to rain storms across Europe. The rainy weather did not prevent the event from raising £2,458 (3,182.00 United States Dollar) for charity to split among Shropshire, Staffordshire Blood Bikers and British Bikers Relief Fund.

The participants welcomed Porsche and I with open arms and jokingly referred to us as the “Crazy Americans” for traveling across the pond commonly known as the Atlantic Ocean just to participate.

I hope to return to Europe in 2019 to support the World’s Largest All Female Motorcycle Meet record at Lynn’s Raven Café.