10 July, 2011

Pilgrimage to Motorcyclepedia Museum

    I opened the front door and looked out to overcast skies about 730a on July 3 2011 and what looked like rain that had just passed.The wife,even though she has a fractured rib, and I decided we were going to ride the motorcycle up to Newburgh NY (again) to visit Mikey Teutul's Wolfgang Art Gallery and Motorcyclepedia Museum . We did NOT stop at Orange County Choppers ,but we made a quick drive by at Paul Jr Designs .
    We decided to go on the trip because it looked like the rain had passed.It did not. We cruised up 222N to 100N to 22N and 33E with no problems.We hit the exit at Wind Gap PA as it started to come down heavily.We pulled into the McDonald's at about 900a and had breakfast and waited for the rain to stop.We waited until about 1015a and the rain did stop,so we took off to our destination.Fifteen minutes later it started coming down hard again with no break in the downpour.
    We just kept going,soaking up the water as we made our way onto 80E and 209N through Delaware Water Gap. As we cruised in the rain through the forest,other die hard motorcyclists passed us headed south.My RAF style perscription goggles kept fogging up and I could barely see.I kept repositioning my head so I could see through a clear spot on my goggles. It was a chaotic ride,but we made it to a gas station in Matamoras,PA.
     We pulled into the pump and the wife,Kelly, got off as did I to stretch our legs,and to discuss if we should continue. Our clothes were thorughly soaked through and our leather jackets will have taken on 8lbs of water at the end of the day,or so it felt.

It was still pouring at this point but we decided to keep rolling since we were more then halfway there and already wet.We go by a minimalist code so we rarely pack alot to bring on a trip and we don't even own raingear.                                                                                                        
So,we head back out into the rain for a few miles on 209 N and turn left onto I87 E.The rain,of course does not let up,but we ride at 70mph into it like it's nothing.Rain is spraying off our tires,dripping off the fenders.It's found a way in and is running down the front of my leather jacket now,creating a wet stripe down the center of my T shirt.Our pants and shoes are completely soaked through.                     
We get off at exit 4W and head north on 17 W to 211 E and ride the last soggy 9 miles
to Mikey Teutul's Art Gallery.We turn into this unassuming street and there is the art gallery on the left between some other businesses,in a small, one story building.We park in the lot across the street,with only one other car occupying a space and walk across into the strange world of Mikey's mind. Unfortunetly,I did not get the curator's name,but she was extremely nice and helpful.She explained which was Mikey's art and which was art created by other local artists.

Mikey Teutul's Wolfgang Art Gallery (and the author's motorcycle)

Mikey's Studio

Mikey's Work

It is definitly interesting although I don't really understand all of it.She told us Mikey comes in and works whenever and doesn't really have a schedule.He was at the gallery the day before for a while.He also has a studio at his house and at his brother's shop.So,we didn't get to meet him.Perhaps next time.
We say goodbye and walk out into the rain like it's nothing,get on the bike and take a couple short side roads to Route 17K and turn right for Newburg,NY.It's already 200p,so we skip Orange County Choppers and drive right by,turn left on route 300 and stop at Walmart so the wife can buy dry jeans.
We then get back on 17K and ride into the town of Newburg,which sort of looks like downtown Reading PA....yeah really,I know.... but,most times,off the beaten path, in the most unexpected places,away from the mainstream,are the best places to visit. I am increasingly getting away from mainstream everything,although I hope this museum gains popularity and is around for a very longtime,forever.                                                                                                                                            
We make a right onto Lake St and about a mile down on the right is a the Motorcyclepedia Museum in an unassuming building that used to be a lumberyard/hardware store.One would drive right by it if one wasn't looking for it.We almost missed the driveway.                                                                               
 We park,walk in the door and are greeted by three Arlen Ness choppers.We pay the more then fair $10.00 admission fee per person and are greeted with warm and friendly staff.He allows us to leave our helmets and jackets,wet and dripping,in the lobby at the front door.The majority of the staff are volunteers.If I lived closer,I would most definitly put in time here as a volunteer.                              
I could go on and describe what you'll see,but I will just post some pictures and video to give you a small part of what you'll see here.

Motorcyclepedia Museum

Two others from Vermont braved the rain for a visit

                            Here is a video of just a small part of this amazing museum
                            Here is a link to all of my pictures

     We left the museum at 445p in light rain,on and off,it rained on the ride back.We stopped in Matamoras for Dollar Menu Dinner at Wendy's and then headed back down 209S. In Delaware Water Gap, we saw a young deer eating alongside the road.The experience of that is enhanced on a motorcycle.It is like we were up close.One can't get that in a cage on four wheels.
      We did about 90 miles to Allentown PA and got gas,headed the rest of the way home.
      We had aching muscles all over from being wet all day.We wouldn't change a thing.We didn't regret not taking the car.Riding a motorcycle is an experience that you can't get in a box on wheels with canned air,what you do getis a FALSE sense of safety. It was a great ride and a great destination. I highly recommend Motorcyclepedia Museum in Newburg NY.We will be going back again,possibly in November,when the original owner of the Wall of Death will be there to ride the wall.This time we will take the car and let the kids experience a great and historical museum and I would hope they learn,as I did, the important part motorcycles play in American,and World history. You don't have to ride a motorcycle to experience Motorcyclepedia,but after visiting and learning,you will be inspired to ride and feel what I feel.
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"If you have to worry about the risk,you're dead already." - Paul Newman

1 comment:

  1. Most definitely added to my "to-do" list ... thanks for sharing!