Harley-Davidson to teach an entire town to ride

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Harley-Davidson are attempting something which sounds ridiculous. They’re going to teach the entire population of a town in the United States to ride motorcycles and then put them all through their test. Yep.

Sounds like a big undertaking, right? Not quite. The town in question is Ryder, North Dakota, with a population of, wait for it… 85. Some of which will probably kids who aren’t able to legally ride motorcycles.

To commemorate the experience, Ryder city officials will change the town’s name to Riders for the summer. This isn’t just a left field marketing ploy by Harley, either. They’ve also helped refurbish the town’s water tower, mirroring the design of the water tower that sits atop the Harley headquarters in Milwaukee. Which means it bears the Harley-Davidson name. Remember when I said it might not all be a marketing ploy? Forget that.


“In Ryder – and across the country – Harley-Davidson is passionate about creating opportunities for new riders to experience and enjoy the sport of motorcycling. With summer quickly approaching, there’s never been a better time to learn how to ride a motorcycle,” said Harley-Davidson’s Director, U.S. Marketing and Market Development Anoop Prakash. “By teaching the entire town of Ryder we believe we’ll show others how easy – and fun – it can be to make the switch from four wheels to two.”

Do the residents all get free Harleys once they’ve passed their tests? Or do they then have to go out and buy their own bikes if they enjoy it?

Did the residents get any say in this at all?

If, as they say, Harley want to create the first completely motorcycle-licenced town, will they have to return every time a kid reaches the required age to ride a bike?


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Liam Marsden

By Liam Marsden

Former MCN Web Producer