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#52 Doc Hopkins

Bonduel, WI

1916 Harley-Davidson J

From the very beginning I was fascinated with motorcycles. At the age of 15, I could not afford a motorcycle, so I built my own. I vibrantly bent a frame and fork out of tubing and built a chopper minibike with a five horsepower Briggs engine. And so, the journey began! I put 3,700 miles around my hometown of Algoma, Wisconsin, located on the shores of Lake Michigan. I even took my little bike to our cinema and was further fascinated by the movie Wild Angels. Later that summer, I sold my handiwork and purchased my first Harley from a local farmer for $2, a 1939 ULH 80 ci. This lit a fire within me!

The journey continued when I started my first HD repair shop in Shawano, Wisconsin in a one and a half stall garage. I got a deal on the rent for $75 per month. By April 1, 1983, I became a Harley-Davidson dealer. We are now a family-owned and operated dealership that has grown to a 72-acre complex which includes a restaurant, two antique motorcycle and classic car museums, antique mall, and zoo where I have over 125 animals. This unique dealership is truly a destination “Like No Other”. My son, Steve, is instrumental in our service department. I built my business on outstanding service and am proud to say that he earned the title of Master Technician this past year. His wife, Tammy, is very devoted in her position as general manager of our restaurant. The Timeline Saloon and BBQ is home to my family heirloom recipes and famous motorcycle. The restaurant is named after our 24 ½ foot long, 7 engine motorcycle that seats 10 people. My daughter, Kersten and her husband, Shannon, manage the HD dealership together. Their professionalism, commitment, and experience are essential to our success. Our entire staff is like family and we have all rallied around Doc’s Harley Davidson, its entities, and each other during this pandemic. Kersten and I continue to drag race nitro Harleys. I have always had a voracious need for speed and began building them in the late 70’s. I started with gas, then alcohol, and finally moved to nitromethane. In 1994, I became the proud holder of a world record.

After 37 years of drag racing, the bear sleeps within me. I have enjoyed slowing my bike down to 45 mph and take pride in riding in my third Cannonball with Stewball, a 1916 J Model Harley Davidson with a 1913 wicker sidecar. I hope to continue this accomplishment of being the only one to complete the race with a passenger in a sidecar. I could not be more delighted at the fact that my beautiful daughter, Kersten, will be joining me for her second Cannonball with Stewball 2.

Perhaps it was the idiosyncrasy of my story that engaged a quite remarkable lady, both literally and figuratively, to ride along with me in my sidecar. Little did this schoolteacher from Green Bay know what she was in for when she met the “man on the motorcycle”. For, soon I will be taking Therese as my wife. This little lady calls them as she sees them. She is a no-nonsense, God-fairing woman who cannot tell a lie. She values all the important little things in life, fame and fortune take a backseat to love and caring for others. She is truly a treasure and an extraordinary woman who is loved and respected by all our family members, friends, and absolutely more so by me. We will tie the knot prior to our Cannonball Kickoff Party with family, friends, and animals by our side. What better way to celebrate our nuptials than by honeymooning with a trip across the country? We are all ready to go!

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