What could be better than going to Sturgis and hanging out with hot chicks and cool Bikers, listening to some of the best live music, while checking out some hot bikes and get paid for doing it? Absolutely nothing! Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Russ Brown thought the same thing when they hired me to drive out to Sturgis and talk with bikers and find out what is important to them.
Well first and foremost many of the bikers i talked with made the trip to Sturgis to be a part of the oldest motorcycle rally, and meet other motorcyclists and check out the cool bikes and bike accessories. Many folks planed to attend Sturgis as part of their vacation, and some just took off for the Black Hills as a last minute cross country run with friends and family.
It seems that almost everyone i had spoke with had either been involved in a motorcycle accident or knew someone who was, and everyone agreed that when a biker is hit by an automobile or truck the outcome is rarely in favor of the motorcyclist.
The topic of motorcycle accident insurance came up a lot as well. It seems that most people were under the impression that should they be involved in a motorcycle accident that their insurance company would help fight the apposing insurance company to make sure they got a fair settlement.
When informed that yes their insurance company could handle their insurance claim, but would they really fight to get you a large enough settlement to cover your damaged motorcycle, hospital bills, and pain and suffering? The answer is no! That is why lawyers specialize in personal injury & auto/motorcycle accidents. The insurance company’s interests are not the same as the interests of someone who has been involved in a serious motorcycle accident, although they may lead you to believe so.
In the late 1800s, outlaws and renegades streamed into South Dakota’s Black Hills in search of gold and fast riches. Nowadays, outlaws and renegades – and everybody in between – still flock to the Hills. But instead of gold, it’s a good time they seek. They find it at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, the most recognized and celebrated motorcycle gathering in the world. For two weeks every August, the population of Sturgis, South Dakota, swells from about 6,000 to upwards of 900,000 as bikers of all stripes arrive and proceed to party.
Why is the Sturgis rally so popular? The parties, big-name entertainment and camaraderie with other bikers are part of it, as is the chance to see a nearly infinitely varied array of factory- and custom-made motorcycles. The presence of a lot of scantily clad women doesn’t hurt, either.
The real reason for the rally’s incredible drawing power, though, is probably its location in the gorgeous Black Hills. There are other motorcycle gatherings around the world, but none with so many scenic drives to so many amazing destinations nearby.
From Sturgis, it’s 62 miles to Mount Rushmore, 67 miles to Crazy Horse Memorial, 75 miles to Custer State Park and its abundant wildlife, 20 miles to Spearfish Canyon, 13 miles to the gaming halls and historic attractions of Deadwood, 110 miles to Badlands National Park, and 78 miles to Devils Tower in Wyoming.
The routes to those destinations are attractions in their own right. Sweeping vistas, stunning canyons, peaceful streams, beautiful rock formations, rolling plains and pine forests are just a few of the sites that greet bikers in and around the Black Hills. The state of South Dakota has published a motorcycle guide, available from the Office of Tourism, with maps of the most scenic routes and information on motorcycle laws and motorcycle dealers.
The closest natural attraction to Sturgis is Bear Butte, which is practically on the city’s front doorstep. Rally goers who visit Bear Butte State Park should be aware that the site is considered sacred by many American Indians who still conduct religious ceremonies there. During the rally, bikers are welcome to visit the site but are asked to respect it as they would a church.
Riding to the rally, or hauling a motorcycle to the rally in a trailer, is a yearly tradition for many people. They range from hard-core, Harley-riding bikers to retirees with their spouses in sidecars. It seems there is a place for everyone in Sturgis and, for the most part, everybody gets along.
In addition to the beautiful scenery, another reason so many people come back to Sturgis year after year is because there is so much to do and see at the rally itself.
Main Street in Sturgis is the main attraction. Every day during the rally, the street is a swarming mass of people, vendors and slow-moving and parked motorcycles. People- and motorcycle-watching are enough to keep a rally-goer busy all day long on this main thoroughfare, and the many local watering holes can keep a rally-goer busy all night.
The racing events founded by the Jackpine Gypsies in 1938 still continue. Other events include bike shows, bike-building competitions and organized rides. The Sturgis Motorcycle Museum and Hall of Fame is available for those who want to learn more about the history of the rally and motorcycles in general.
Concerts are a big part of the rally, and especially the concerts hosted by the Buffalo Chip Campground. Aerosmith, Kid Rock and Toby Keith are just a few of the entertainers who have rocked The Chip in recent years. Other events at the campground have included professional wrestling, swimsuit pageants and stunt riding.
The Chip is only one of the many places to stay during the rally. The official rally Web site has a good listing of campgrounds, hotels, cabins and private lodging opportunities.
The rally has grown so big in recent decades that some people have begun pouring into Sturgis during the weeks leading up to the actual event, and some stay in Sturgis or delay showing up until a week or two afterward. At the height of the annual mass migration to Sturgis, there are lines at the gas stations in some South Dakota communities. Interstate 90 in particular, which crosses the state from west to east, is filled with bikers before, during and after the rally.
Because of the huge volume of motorcycle riders, traffic laws take on added importance. There is a handy list of motorcycle driving laws on the state Office of Tourism’s Web site.
Having a safe, good time has become the aim of most modern rally-goers. Modern outlaws still keep things interesting, though, as the Sturgis police force and other rally law officers know well. In 2008, for example, there were 188 parking tickets, five felony drug arrests and 437 people jailed during the rally.
Considering the huge size of the 400,000-strong event, those incidents make up a tiny fraction of the daily activity. With so many things to do and see, it’s pretty easy for everybody to find their preferred level of revelry.
The bottom line is that as long as there are bikers seeking the trills of Sturgis, the legendary motorcycle rally will live long and prosper, and i am sure will only get bigger and better!
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, you need an experienced and aggressive motorcycle accident lawyer who will fight to protect your rights. Visit www.russbrown.com or call 1-800-4-BIKERS to learn more!
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