Sturgis Motorcycle Rally

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Sturgis Motorcycle Rally

First Monday of August through following Sunday
A mammoth yearly rally of 250,000 or so motorcyclists in small Sturgis, S.D. (population 7,000), formerly called the Black Hills Motorcycle Classic . There are races, merrymaking, band music, and usually some misbehavior, including arrests for drunken driving. There tend to be numerous accidents with injuries, and sometimes, fatalities. Motorcycle drag racing runs eight days, and other official events include bike shows, a swap meet, monster truck races, Tough Man and Tough Woman Contests (the titles determined by fights in which biting and kicking but not much else are forbidden), and a fireworks show. The rally also includes unofficial events, especially weddings; bikers find it romantic to get married during the rally, and 100 or more couples get married there every year.
The rally began in 1938 when Clarence (Pappy) Hoel, a local motorcycle dealer, invited some fellow bikers to a get-together. His wife, Pearl, made hot dogs, potato salad, and iced tea for the crew. The rally has been held ever since, except for two years during World War II, and has become part of biker lore.
CONTACTS:
City of Sturgis Rally Dept.
1040 2nd St., Ste. 201
Sturgis, SD 57785
605-720-0800; fax: 605-720-0801
www.sturgismotorcyclerally.com
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