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Sturgis Rally History

from www.JackpineGypsies.com

The Jackpine Gypsies Motorcycle Club started in 1936, with an official American Motorcycle Association (AMA) charter in 1937. AMA began promoting the racing events; which started the now famous Rally in Sturgis on August 14, 1938. That weekend celebration in 1938 had a lineup of only nine racers and a small audience watching the races.

The average age for a motorcycle club is three years, and after 62 years, this club is still running strong. The club owns all the property on which most of our club activities take place. There is approximately 40 acres adjacent to Interstate 90 between Exit 30 and Exit 32, the busiest section of Interstate 90 during the Sturgis Rally. A lighted short track, motocross track, field meet area, hillclimb area, clubhouse, office and state approved concession business are located on these grounds.

The Jackpine Gypsies are a non-profit organization. They donate to area charities, including: the local food bank, Sturgis High School, Zonta Club of Sturgis, and Christian Motorcycle Association. Go to their site if you are interested in becoming a member. www.JackpineGypsies.com

The Jackpine Gypsies have over 150 members living all over the United States and abroad. The average age of club members is 40. The average age of spectators is 42, while the average age of the riders is 23.

The short track at the Jackpine Gypsies club grounds was first used in 1963. Since that debut race, many improvements have been made. The racetrack is now wider, it has permanent seating, the lighting system has been improved, there is an announcer, a sign up building and a clubhouse, where the concession business is located. The club holds races every other weekend and a full week of races during the rally.A motocross track was added on in the 1980's and then in 1996 a new track was built. The sport of motocross is beginning to grow again, in fact, in 1998; the Gypsies held five motocross races, which attracted over 500 racers.

During the Sturgis Rally, they hold 12 events, including: motocross racing, a 1/2 mile race, hill climbs, road tours and short track racing. There were over 6000 spectators and hundreds of racers during the week of the Rally. As you can see, the Sturgis Rally has grown quite a bit since the first rally in 1937!

Sturgis Statistics

The following stats were provided by the Sturgis City Rally Department, and is assumed to reflect the numbers that Sturgis saw.

-
1990(50th)
1999 (59th)
2000 (60th)
2005 (65th)
2009 (69th)
2010 (70th)
2011 (71st)
DOT Traffic Counts
528,676
539,475
604,441
524,656
394,009
459,968
415,367
Attendance
400,000
325,000
633,000
525,250
442,163
466,769
416,727
Marriage Licenses Issued
179
126
197
109
62
74
59
Vendors (in Sturgis)
243
941
943
901
696
761
727
Vendors (in Meade County)
307
103
187
287
207
261
228
Rally Related Deaths
N/A
11
10
6
6
9
4
Taxable Sales / Temp Vendors
3 Mill
11 Mill
14.3 Mill
14.9 Mill
10.1 Mill
11.4 Mill
10.3 Mill
SD State Sales Tax collected
N/A
177,000
573,000
596,246
404,591
456,986
411,466
Sturgis City Sales Tax Collected
59,000
221,187
286,000
268,711
202,295
228,493
205,733
SD Dept of Tourism Tax Collected
N/A
N/A
143,000
148,060
150,506
170,191
150,403
Tons of garbage hauled
408.88
568
769.55
795.18
564.83
583.16
511.79
Mt Rushmore Motorcycle Count:
76,603
55,491
62,798
78,469
67,130
55,556
Other Info:
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2011
Parking Tickets
164
359
184
179
209
221
273
324
303
188
167
Felony Drug Arrest
58
56
9
8
8
16
17
3
4
5
4
Misdemeanor Drug Arrests
431
307
92
111
84
97
110
61
57
84
51
Arrests for Non-Traffic Violations
294
264
193
250
230
248
258
161
147
319
175
Traffic Violations (Sturgis)
329
500
132
149
172
145
115
167
143
153
165
Jailed
122
111
126
140
374
405
448
443
460
437
400
Calls for Service - Meade Co. Sheriff
1204
1150
1989
1119
1228
1441
1197
1217
1386
1248
910
Hospital Emergency Room Visits
326
390
275
292
334
340
317
448
289
370
275