I feel Mama Tried is probably one of the most anticipated shows in the Mid-West for the soul fact that it moves you and warms your soul in the dead of a winter. Scott Johnson and Warren Heir, curator and owners of Mama Tried not only put on one of the best curated motorcycle shows in the United States but they give you a weekend long adventure of fun in Milwuakee. The show has only been going for three years now but feels like a main staple in the motorcycle world.
Friday night kicked off the festivities for Mama Tried at UWM Panther Arena with their very first Flat Out Friday flat track racing series. Anyone could come and register a bike and race their hearts out in their designated es. The es were pro, kids, vintage, hooligan, and everyones favorite the goofballs. The track was a short left hand turn only circle which made for some really exciting moments. The very first turn after the starting line and turn three were absolute carnage in all es. I even heard a story about a guy slamming into a wall and breaking his leg in pre run warm ups on turn three.
Mark Atkins - Rusty Butcher
By far one of my favorite moments from the weekend was seeing a lot of my friends out there tearing it up on the race track. People believing in themselves and doing daring shit is what I live for. After leaving the arena all you could see was smiles on everyone's faces and people telling stories to their friends about what they saw, reliving the moments as if their friends missed out. Some people went to their hotels and others went to a Pre-party at the Harley-Davidson Museum where a few bands played and a ton of beers where had. I played it low key that night to make sure I would get up early enough in the morning to get to the show before the crowds started to pile in.
Tyler Guid Panhead with Cole Foster Grips
Saturday was a long day full of beautiful bikes from all over the United States displayed in a humongous open floored warehouse. The light poured from the windows on the farthest wall as you entered the room by a freight elevator. Blinded by the light, as your eyes finally adjust; you finally realize the entire room is covered in every kind of bike you could ever imagine. "The main idea is to get guys that are in the same field, motorcycle wise but in a different genre or attitude, you know styles, i.e. chopper or racer or whatever. We want to get them all in the same room and get them talking. Rather than have everyone pile up in one corner like boys and girls at a school dance, you know. We want to intermingle people and get them stoked on other forms of motorcycles” - Warren Heir. That’s precisely what Warren and Scott accomplish with Mama Tried, it opens your eyes to so many possibilities when it comes to two wheeled machines. People learning about each other, the builds, and the history of the bikes. You can really see the inspiration flow into the hearts of the attendees and the passion for motorcycles in the air was sincere.
Pat Patterson from Led Sled Customs
I love this paint on this Choppahead build!
Sunday was filled with more discovery of bikes that I had missed from the prior day. There was also was going to be some ice racing during the day but unfortunately the ice had melted due to the freakishly warm weather Milwuakee had throughout the week. Apparently a handful of guys were jonesing to go racing on ice and found a lake about an hour and a half south of Mama Tried. They took their bikes out of the show to go race, which in turn opened the floor up a little more for people. Sunday is always a little more quiet of a day at Mama Tried. I enjoy walking around the bikes that still stay and getting a more in-depth look at them.
If you have never been to Milwuakee or Mama Tried, make it a priority on your next year's calendar. It's a fun filled weekend, full of great food, amazing racing, the best of people and amazing motorcycle culture. Don't forget to stop by the H-D Museum while your there too, it is well worth the money and they have a vast collection of some of the rarest Harley's ever.
I wanted to take a second to personally thank Scott and Warren for inviting Tyler and myself up to showcase his bike and some of my prints at the show.
Words and photos by: