This year has proven to be a year of constant surprises. Good and bad, wild and infectious- Everyone has been warned to stay home, urged to stay within your own circle, and learn how to properly wash your hands. As every motorcycle event across our country was being canceled, one by one, I was surprised and delighted that the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally was going on as planned. Some huge names pulled sponsorship, headlining bands canceled their performances, and the crowd was projected to be the smallest in 6 years, despite the 80th-anniversary celebration. This bummed a lot of people out and discouraged them from going. When we were surprised with a last-minute invitation to go to Sturgis for the weekend, all of these reasons had the exact opposite effect on our thoughts. Benny and I had an obligation to all of chopper -man and -womankind after all, if we ARE all going to die, why not go out saying you were there?
CAMP ZERO at The Sturgis Buffalo Chip was our home for the weekend, and we had one hell of a good time checking out EVERYTHING they had to offer their patrons. From the ring of death to the bikini bike washes- CAMP ZERO mini bike races, stunt shows, and the bands that DID play to entertain the sea of people who were just there to have a good time.
Michael Lichter’s Motorcycles As Art show was on the grounds, and Benny got us in for an early showing so that he could take some beautiful photos. Seeing so many handcrafted works of art under one roof was literally jaw-dropping.
The crowds were spread out pretty well unless you wanted to immerse yourself into the lawn area of the stage, where you are encouraged to rev up your bike when you liked what you saw on stage. The Flaunt Girls, a Rally staple, really got all of those engines revving!
Food vendors and trinket shops were sprinkled throughout the grounds, making sure you had the souvenirs and blood sugar to remember your experience. Getting around was amazingly simple, considering the golf carts were allowed almost everywhere on the grounds, and they acted like social buffers as well… careening around the campgrounds and stage areas screaming ‘WHOOOO!’ at the tops of our lungs- just to hear a ‘WHOOHOOOO!’ back and someone throws you some beads.
But the factor that set this rally apart from any show or event I have ever been to was the people. Smiles on every face, just living their best lives. Riding some of the best roads our country offers and taking in the most incredible sights, every style and brand of motorbike you could imagine. Sturgis is not only a party for two short weeks in August- it is a family reunion, a vacation, a sightseeing adventure, a get-together for all walks of life, and for those couple of weeks, a chance to let loose and just have fun on two wheels. The epitome of being a biker.
Being able to experience everything we did in such a short amount of time was a task for sure. On top of that, though, it was a chance to be able to experience an event at its bare minimum, it’s true colors- and to be around people who are fun-loving true Americans, just trying to hold on to what freedoms we still have- dancing with giant turkey legs in their hands- dumping ‘em out to fully live uninhibited- carving the beautiful mountain roads on your two-wheeled machine- no matter how big the front wheel is- and just fuckin’ LIVIN man! The 80th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally will go down in my life’s history as a great experience, and something I am SO glad we didn’t miss.
Article by Amy Sue Sporty / @amysue_rides
Photos by Benny Stucker / @benny_stucker
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