Welcome to the Indiana Motorcycle Preservation Society (IMPS) – a passionate community united by the love of motorcycles and the rich heritage they hold in the Hoosier state. Established with a vision to preserve, showcase, and celebrate Indiana’s motorcycle history, IMPS is dedicated to ensuring that the remarkable stories and contributions of motorcyclists throughout the ages are cherished and passed on to future generations.
Our mission is rooted in creating an immersive experience that takes you on a journey through Indiana’s motorcycle culture, from its early beginnings to the present day. We believe that motorcycles hold a unique place in the heart of Hoosiers, and we aim to honor the deep connection between riders, their machines, and the roads they’ve traveled.
IMPS is driven by a diverse group of individuals, from passionate enthusiasts and collectors to historians and community members who all share a common goal – to preserve and share the rich tapestry of Indiana’s motorcycle history. Together, we are writing the next chapter in the story of motorcycles in the Hoosier state, and we invite you to be a part of this exciting journey.
Join us in celebrating the pioneers, the legends, and the everyday riders who have shaped the motorcycle culture in Indiana. Discover the heritage, embrace the spirit, and ride with us as we honor Indiana’s Rich Motorcycle History.
Discovery Sparks a Decade-Long Motorcycle Rally
Step into the thrilling world of motorcycles and the fascinating history of Marion, Indiana. It all started in 2010 when Pat Mitchell, an avid reader and researcher, stumbled upon a remarkable story while searching for local moto history to decorate his motorcycle accessories and custom seat shop, Ride & Leather. This discovery led him to share the tale with the world, and soon enough, the captivating story of Marion’s “Hog” heritage spread like wildfire.
Marion: The Ultimate Moto Destination
The story goes back to the early 1900s when Glen Scott, the owner of the local Harley-Davidson shop, dreamt of promoting Marion as the ultimate destination for motorcycle enthusiasts. His pursuit led to the hosting of the International Championship Motorcycle Race in 1919 and 1920.
The Hog Boys & johnnie
The winner of the 1920 race, Ray Weishaar, received a special gift from a local farmer—a small hog. This tiny creature named Johnnie became the Harley-Davidson team’s mascot, and soon the team was known as the “Hog Boys.” The association of Harley-Davidson motorcycles with hogs spread far and wide, leading to the establishment of HOG (Harley Owners Group) chapters worldwide, and solidifying Marion, Indiana as the “Home of the Hog.”
Celebrating the 90th adoption anniversary of the "Hog"
Fast forward to 2010, Marion celebrated the 90th adoption anniversary of the “Hog” by creating the commemorative celebration, “Hog Daze Night.” The event quickly grew into the “Hog Daze Motorcycle Rally and Music Festival,” an annual weekend celebration filled with live music, food, assorted vendors, and a motorcycle ride.
Evolution of Hog Daze and indiana's motorcycle past
Over the years, the event evolved, and in 2015, the Indiana Motorcycle Preservation Society (IMPS) was born. A group of dedicated volunteers ensured the long-term sustainability of the event and served as a hub and connector of Indiana’s thrilling motorcycle past.
Acknowledging Indiana's Rich Motorcycle history
Inspired by Marion’s captivating Hog tale, IMPS embarked on a mission to preserve and share more motorcycle stories from Indiana’s rich heritage. Under the leadership of Pat Mitchell, the organization successfully rebranded the event as the “Cornfield Classic,” a celebration that puts Marion’s unique story front and center.
center of indiana's moto history
As the story unfolds, IMPS continues to collect and preserve motorcycle memories from photo albums, basements, and the Historical Center of Marion’s archives. With each passing year, the Cornfield Classic and IMPS proudly keep the spirit of Marion’s “Hog” heritage alive, inviting all to join in celebrating the thrilling history of Indiana’s motorcycle culture.
Our board is dedicated to the goal of collecting, connecting, and sharing our state’s motorcycle stories. The IMPS board is comprised of business owners, mechanics, builders, technicians, historians, writers, motorcyclists, and logistics.
Our 2024 executive team includes: Jake Simpkins, President; Roger Tappan, Vice President; Loretta Tappan, Secretary and Treasurer. Our board at-large includes: Russ Sprong, Frank Chandler, Meghan Tinkel, Steve Reiff, William Munn, and Steve Chapel.
If you have a story to contribute about motorcycling or motorcycle racing in Indiana, we encourage you to use our Contact Form to share your information.
If you’re ready to be part of the IMPS Network and support our mission, please visit our Membership Page.
As we venture forward, we wish you clear skies, smooth roads, and delightful surprises around each corner! Ride on!