Hastings man riding high wheel to raise money for veterans

Posted at 8:11 PM, Jul 30, 2015
and last updated 2015-07-30 22:48:38-04

HASTINGS, Mich. -- A man in Barry County is raising money for the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans by riding his high wheel bicycle around Mackinac Island. The man plans to cycle 100 miles in just one day.

Dan Johnson has been riding his high wheel for about a decade, and now plans to push the pedals for a good cause, honoring our veterans.

It's not your average bicycle. This type of  bike was more common in the late 1800's and into the early 1900's. Dan Johnson said that when he rides, he gets all kinds of reactions.

"People just kind of curious and they've never seen one in real life and how do you get up and how do you get down is probably the biggest question," said Johnson.  "When I was a real young lad in Kalamazoo, Michigan, there was a place called the High Wheeler Ice Cream Company. I love ice cream and they used to have one of those on the wall and I think that's kind of where I got my fascination from for it," said Johnson.

Johnson is teaming up with his company, L3 Avionics and with the help from a group of sponsors he plans to ride the bike on Mackinac Island, raising money for the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans.

"If it wasn't for our veterans past and present, we wouldn't be out here in this great country doing the fun things that we like to do," said Johnson. "We start at 6 o'clock in the morning and the faster you can petal, I guess the faster you get done."

Johnson plans to finish the 100 mile ride in 10 1/2 hours.  The ride will take place on August 7th during the Michigan Wheelmens' gathering on Mackinac Island.

If you'd like to contribute, you can donate to the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans directly, and let them know it's a part of the fundraising efforts for "Dan's Ride."