Old School Americana & Nostalgia

People

Ann-Margret Reveals Riding Motorcycles Keeps Her Young at 82

Ann-Margret Reveals Riding Motorcycles Keeps Her Young at 82

Ann-Margret recently revealed her secret to staying vibrant at age 82. “I love speed,” the actress, singer, and motorcycle enthusiast said. “Not the drug”, she clarified to People.

At the 25th Women’s Image Awards hosted by the Women’s Image Network at the Saban Theater in Beverly Hills, the passionate motorcyclist mentioned that she continues to ride her Harley Davidson without hesitation. However, the hog Ann-Margret bounces on has her signature touch.

“It’s lavender and it’s got white daisies all over it,” she told the outlet. “There’s flowers on the back fender and on the front fender. I love the speed.”

Ann-Margret Took a Break From Motorcycle Riding to Give a Heartfelt Speech

Still, Ann-Margret took a break from riding motorcycles long enough to give a heartfelt speech. On Wednesday, she paused briefly to unwind and contemplate her life while receiving WIN’s Living Legend Award. “I just can’t believe all the things that have happened to me. I never expected it. Never,” she said.

Born as Ann-Margret Olsson in Sweden in 1941, the upcoming performer relocated to the U.S. during her childhood with her parents. Early on, she embarked on dance lessons, showcasing her natural talent for entertainment.

“I remember wanting to be in show business all my life,” she recalled. “And I remember one day I said to mother and daddy, ‘I want to talk to you. It’s a very, very important thing for me and I want to get into show business.’”

During the day, Ann-Margret focused on speech studies at Northwestern University. Meanwhile, at night, she showcased her talent by performing at club gigs with her jazz ensemble, The Suttletones.

After heading west to Las Vegas and Los Angeles, Ann-Margret caught the attention of comedy legend George Burns. He offered her a role in his holiday show at the Sahara in Las Vegas. She became a sensation, attracting Hollywood’s attention. Her performance in Bye, Bye Birdie in 1963 catapulted her to stardom before she starred alongside Elvis Presley in Viva Las Vegas the following year.

Philanthropist Wallis Annenberg, while presenting Ann-Margret with the Living Legend Award, highlighted the star’s age and legendary status.

“When you reach your 80s, people want to dip you in bronze and stick you on a shelf somewhere, legend or not,” she noted. “But why gather dust on a shelf when you are still young and vital, and ready to rock?”

“Why go gently into the night when you can ride your lavender Harley until sunrise and be your own damn woman?” Wallis added. “ If it were up to me, the word legend in the Oxford English Dictionary would be accompanied by a picture of our honoree.”