Harley Davidson and the Boy Scouts

This weekend the Harley Davidson museum in Milwaukee is hosting the Engineering Merit Badge for Boy Scouts. If you’re reading this early Sunday morning, it is not too late to head on down and enjoy special admission pricing and of course a well laid out course for the boys. It is a terrific program, and it’s wonderful to see Harley giving this way to the community. We can’t say Thank You enough!

One of the best things about doing a Merit Badge this way is that the boys not only get to explore a topic of interest like Engineering, but they get to see it applied in a really exciting way. And that excitement, seeing the cutaway V-Twin turning as you push the brightly lit buttons, sitting on the Super Glide and posing for a picture, and speaking with the actual Engineers that design and take these concepts from paper to steel, helps a young man on the edge of understanding to really grab on and get excited. As a classroom teacher, I know that this excitement translates directly into better understanding and will stick with that child longer.

But let’s face it – this isn’t just cool for the kids – it’s cool for the kid in all of us. The most successful adults are lifelong learners, and I’m willing to bet an awful lot of dads walk out of there learning something new, just as excited as the kids.

Hey – did you know that in 1917, just 6 years after the founding of the Boy Scouts of America and before companies were doing tons of cross-promotional merchandizing, Harley-Davidson introduced a bicycle line to acquaint youngsters with the Motor Company? It was called the Model 5-17 “Boy Scout” Youth Bicycle, and a fully restored one is on permanent display in the museum today.

I guess it goes to show you that Harley-Davidson’s commitment to our Community, and their respect and support of the Boy Scouts of America isn’t just a promotional thing. It’s a long standing relationship of mutual respect, and we appreciate their support!

Want to check out more of the photos? You can see the rest of the set on Flickr here.

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