Sturgis South Dakota was the stage of the 69th annual Sturgis rally
August 3 through August 9. This years rally had an estimated 400,000 in attendance (actual numbers won’t be available until mid-September) despite some wild weather.
Severe thunderstorms and golf ball sized hail made for a tough time and caused many to leave the rally early.
Steven Tyler, lead singer of Aerosmith, fell from the stage during a concert at Buffalo Chip Campground injuring his neck, shoulder and head. The injuries weren’t serious but were bad enough to cancel the rest of the dates scheduled.
Accident rates went up 20% from 2008 and there were 5 deaths associated with the event, though none actually happened directly in Sturgis. One of those killed, motorcycle entrepreneur Bruce Rossmeyer, died in Wyoming on his way to the rally. Rossmeyer, a Harley-Davidson dealer had 15 dealerships.
Terry Anderson who has provided a place to stay for those attending the rally for the last 15 years said this is the last year. The 80 year old women will be moving to an assisted living facility and won’t be able to be a home away from home for bikers visiting Sturgis.
Injury accidents, non-injury accidents, citations, DUI’s, and drug arrests were all up over 2008 levels.
The 2009 Sturgis rally was wild as usual and this year even the weather got in on the act!