Sturgis Motorcycle Rally To Go On Despite Pandemic

in News/Coronavirus

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally will go on as planned, Aug. 7-16, despite the coronavirus pandemic.

There will be some modifications to the famous motorcycle rally, however, according to a news release from the City of Sturgis, South Dakota. All of the city-sponsored events, such as the opening ceremonies, the parades, a B1 Flyover and entertainment and live music at the Harley-Davidson Rally Point have been canceled.

These changes have been implemented to reduce large crowd gatherings in downtown Sturgis. Extra sanitization procedures will also be in effect during the 10 days of the rally.

However, there will still be music, entertainment and other activities during the rally. Some of the acts performing over the 10 days include Lita Ford, the Kenny Wayne Shepard Band, Motionless in White and Bone Thugs-N-Harmony.

Other events will include drag races and a poker tournament.

“The City of Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is an icon of American Freedom and Independence,” the release said. “The City of Sturgis has been the pre-eminent host of this event for decades and welcomes each visitor to the event. We ask that attendees help maintain the safety of our community and guests alike by respecting protocols and guidelines.”

The rally’s vendors will have to submit to health screenings before their shifts begin and heightened sanitation requirements will be enforced.

Following the rally, the city will offer vouchers for free coronavirus tests for residents, according to the Black Hills Pioneer. Each test costs around $150 normally.

It was estimated that 490,000 people attended the rally last year, with comparable numbers in 2018. The largest attendance in the last decade was in 2015, when 739,000 people attended the rally in the town of 7,000 people.

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