One night in Sturgis / by a zugunruhe

Intense patriotism, heavy drinking, and loud things.

By shear fortune, I was able to attend the opening Friday of The 75th annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. One of the largest motorcycle rallies in the in the world, this pulls in hundreds of thousands of visitors every year.

While I’m assuming this is a pretty tame night compared to the rest of the week, It gave me a glimpse into what goes on here during the actual rally.

I spent most of my time downtown jumping from bar to bar and ventured out to the bars on the outside of town for few hours. I didn’t have the ability to visit the camps, which is where I imagine all of the real debauchery happens. I can only assume I just got the ‘old-guy-in-a-Coyote-Ugly-that-doesn’t-get-out-much’ experience of Sturgis.

I love the sense of community I found here. There’s a heavy AA/NA presence as well as strong religious ties that bring a lot of these bikers together. Strong social support nets and a heavy community vibe. It's a chill place.