Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally | Black Hills Travel Blog

Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally

  • Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
    Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
  • Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
    Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
  • Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
    Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
  • Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
    Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
  • Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
    Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
  • Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
    Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
  • Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
    Day 1 of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally
Updated: Sunday, August 4, 2019
By : 
Alyssa

Day one of the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally began on Friday, August 2, and everyone is gearing up for an amazing party in the Black Hills and Badlands.

Growing up in the region, I've always looked forward to August and hearing the building roar of motorcycle engines in the distance. That roar, the kind that shakes your ribcage, brings no shortage of colorful people, flavorful food, high-adrenaline rock ‘n roll and thousands of motorcycles. No matter whether you're in the Badlands, the Southern Hills, or right in Sturgis itself, the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is an experience unlike any other. As someone who has only been in Sturgis for the rally twice before, I was excited to go back again and see what everything looks like when it's just getting started.

The first stop along the way was to check out the Legendary Buffalo Chip as everything was just getting started. It’s a definite change in scenery to see everything being set up versus when it’s in full swing, but the staff was busy as ever with a long line of campers pulling in for the week.

I stopped by at the avenue of flags to see the memorial and admire the impressive mass of Bear Butte just across from the Chip. It was promising to be a hot, humid rally day, but it only added to the supercharged attitude of Rally-goers.

The crowd was just beginning to pile into the Big Engine Bar at the Crossroads for food, drinks, and one of the many free concerts that you can see during Rally week. It was quiet, but undeniably with the ozone charged atmosphere of excitement—everyone had finally made it to the party in Sturgis.

I dropped by the campground and passed by several people keeping cool and picnicking outside their campers, making new friends and celebrating anniversaries, birthdays, and good times all around. One of my favorite things about the rally is the spirit of community that bikers seem to have with each another, and it was certainly present as I wandered.

Meanwhile, the amphitheater was empty in anticipation of big-name entertainers and swaths of people later in the week. It was a pretty crazy feeling being there when it was so empty, but I know full well it'll soon be packed to the brim with people, food, beer and music.

After checking in on the Chip, I took a trip downtown to see all the bikes rolling in, and I was not disappointed. Walking main street and Lazelle in Sturgis is nothing short of an adventure. If you're there to see some of the biggest characters and craziest custom bikes, you won't be disappointed!

I climbed up the tower above main street to get a better look and I could see truly how quickly the crowds were beginning to build. Vendors of all kinds lined the streets selling leathers, bike supplies, t-shirts, drinks and delicious cuisine.

Speaking of food and drink: whether it's street meat, buffalo burgers, salad, steak or beer, there are dozens of places to experience in Sturgis. The Knuckle Saloon, One-Eyed Jack's Saloon, The Loud American Roadhouse, and Full Throttle Saloon are all famous places to stop in and have a drink or a meal and check out the concerts.

There's plenty to do and even more to see at the 79th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. With big concerts, wild events and more bikers on their way to the biggest party in the world, it's going to be incredible. Get ready to go hog wild and stay tuned for more Rally action this week!

For a full line up of Sturgis Motorcycle Rally events in the Black Hills and Badlands, visit our Sturgis Motorcycle Rally event page.

About the Author

Alyssa is a Chadron State College graduate with deep roots in the Black Hills and Badlands. As an English Major, she has a passion for writing, people, animals, stationary, and (of course) South Dakota. Her friends often describe her as loyal, funny, and someone who always keeps things interesting. 

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