Dale’s Wheels Through Time Museum in Maggie Valley, North Carolina, is always a good experience, but it was even more special during its 21st anniversary celebrations, June 29 – July 3. The record-breaking weekend saw visitors enjoying the sights and sounds of some of the museum’s rarest motorcycles, the American Motordrome Company’s Wall of Death shows, and an extensive museum tour led by museum curator Matt Walksler.

Related: Wheels Through Time Museum: Time Travel Does Exist

Wheels Through Time is dedicated to preserving the history of motorcycling. It was founded by Dale Walksler and opened in 2002 in a 38,000-square-foot facility right off the Blue Ridge Parkway. With more than 375 vintage machines on display, along with artwork and memorabilia, the museum is a real treat for motorcyclists. Unlike many other museums, Wheels Through Time also fires up some of these vintage motorcycles for visitors to hear.

Read the press release below for more information about the anniversary festivities and the museum.

Wheels Through Time Museum
One of the most asked-about bikes in the museum is the 1942 Harley-Davidson XA, a rare experimental machine built by Harley-Davidson for the U.S. Army in World War 2, seen here with Museum Curator Matt Walklser sharing its history. Photo courtesy Wheels Through Time.

The excitement was high at Dale’s Wheels Through Time Museum in Maggie Valley, North Carolina, as the motorcycle museum celebrated its 21st anniversary with a record-breaking weekend!  The Wheels Through Time crew celebrated with a weekend of thrills and history and firing up rare pieces of American motorcycle history. During the event, the atmosphere inside the museum was filled with excitement as the staff fired up some of the rarest motorcycles in the building and even did a few burnouts! Outside, the action continued as the American Motordrome Company’s “Wall of Death” riders put on hourly thrill shows with death-defying stunts.

Dale Walksler founded Wheels Through Time Museum while still a Harley-Davidson dealer in Mt. Vernon, Illinois. When he sold the dealership in 1999, he began to look for a location to open a stand-alone museum dedicated to preserving American transportation history and finally settled on the current site in Maggie Valley. Wheels Through Time officially opened to the public on July 2, 2002.

Wheels Through Time Museum
Museum Curator Matt Walksler fires up a 1912 Harley-Davidson Twin for visitors during the 21st Anniversary Weekend. Photo courtesy Wheels Through Time.

The weekend was a smash hit for the museum, with record-breaking crowds all weekend. At 1 p.m. on Saturday, museum curator Matt Walksler greeted the large crowd and began a VIP tour of the museum, starting up some of the rarest and most unique motorcycles in the collection. Walksler’s personal tour was a journey into the past featuring sights, sounds, and smells from motorcycles as far back as 1912. After the extensive tour, Walkser thanked the crowd for their attendance and said, “It’s weekends like these that show the importance of keeping the history of the American motorcycle alive for generations to come.” The weekend also coincided with Haywood County Locals Day, wherein the museum gives free admission to anyone who lives in Haywood County on the first Saturday of each month.

With the anniversary weekend now in the rearview, the museum is looking to the future with eyes focused forward on growth and preservation. Each season, the staff is hard at work, with a mission to improve the experience for people to learn and enjoy. The excitement at Wheels Through Time isn’t limited to anniversary weekend, though; all season long, museum staff will be sharing stories and firing up classic motorcycles daily. 

With new projects rolling out of the restoration shop all the time, the museum stays hard at work, keeping things fresh and ever-changing. Just like the motorcycles within them, the museum’s exhibits are alive and continuously updated with new bikes and history. To learn more, visit the Wheels Through Time website.


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