For many motorcycle enthusiasts, the biggest event of the summer is summed up in a single word: Sturgis.
Every August, riders rumble into the small South Dakota town for the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, a week of races and tours, concerts and camaraderie. This year's rally, Aug. 3-9, is the 75th annual. To mark that milestone, here's a quick look at the event's history, as well as some things to do and places to go if you're planning to make the pilgrimage down Interstate 90.
The Evolution of Sturgis
The nation's best-known motorcycle rally has its roots in the purchase of an Indian Motorcycle franchise in Sturgis by Clarence "Pappy" Hoel in 1936. Two years later, Hoel, his wife, Pearl, and the newly formed Jackpine Gypsies Motorcycle Club sponsored their first race. The "Black Hills Classic" drew nine racers and a crowd of 200 on Aug. 14, 1938. The club has continued to sponsor the rally each year since, except for a few years during World War II. And, yes, it has grown. Today, it encompasses 12 events, including motocross racing, a half-mile race, hill climbs, road tours and short track racing, with hundreds of racers and thousands of spectators.
Three Places to Visit in Downtown Sturgis
Three Scenic Rides to Enjoy
No matter if you’re headed to Sturgis or somewhere else on your bike this summer, be sure you have motorcycle insurance for your prized ride. You'll want a policy that satisfies your state's requirements. And, look for added features, such as coverage for safety apparel and for custom parts and equipment.
Have fun and stay vertical on the road to South Dakota (or elsewhere) this year!
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