Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Iron Horse Hotel Helps BUILD Students' Futures

This is the winning bike from the
 2013-14 BUILD season
All things considered, it would always be my recommendation for youth to try their best to pursue higher education, whatever it may lead to. But some - confession myself included - just aren't cut out for the path of attending or finishing college after high school. For many, even with a degree, career pursuits that don't involve a college education's fruits are their path for one reason or another. For these people, getting a trade skill is very important but in today's education landscape that is becoming harder and harder as resources for public schools decline and the focus becomes more and more in higher education that may or may not be taken advantage of.

Thankfully, there are programs to help young people get the skills they need to find a worthwhile and worthy career in manual trades. One such program is the BUILD Moto Mentor program started by the Iron Horse Hotel in Milwaukee which pairs local custom motorcycle building mentors with teams of students to learn how to rebuild a bike from the ground up. Tomorrow, Thursday June 5th, you can see and celebrate the results of this past year's teams at the first of the Iron Horse Hotel's weekly bike nights.


Founded by The Iron Horse Hotel in 2011, BUILD is non-profit organization dedicated to pairing students and mentors in a collective effort to learn valuable life skills while restoring vintage motorcycles.

The Iron Horse Hotel, along with a team of dedicated volunteers and motorcycle enthusiasts, is offering local high school students the opportunity to learn vintage bike restoration while developing important business and interpersonal skills in the process. Students will learn valuable expertise, meet dedicated Mentors and, through a formal and very visible competition, be rewarded for their efforts with incentives given along the way and recognition through the display and racing of their bikes.

Teams from local high schools have been organized to design and rebuild a vintage "barn-condition" race bike to American Historic Racing Motorcycle Association (AHRMA) racing standards. Each team has been matched with at least one Faculty Advisor from their school and a pair of experienced Mentors who will act as coaches and team leaders, encouraging the students to plan, design and complete their build. Teams will be judged by regional experts on design, execution and horsepower output on a chassis dynamometer.

At the season's inagural Bike Night at Iron Horse, awards and prizes will be given to winning teams in the following categories:

  • Fastest Bike (Based on a dyno competition)
  • Best Art Bike (On-site crowd favorite)
  • Facebook Favorite (Facebook-driven voting)

The combination of an educational program with motorcycles at the manliest hotel in well - everywhere - earns the highest marks as a Greater Milwaukee Men endorsed event so head on own and congratulate and celebrate with all the teams who all put in hard work to complete their work and support BUILD for future years.