Yankton, South Dakota – Yankton’s first Rock ‘N’ Rumble event was held last August and it was meant to be a stop-off for bikers on their way to Sturgis.
This year, the plan is to make Rock ‘N’ Rumble a premier Yankton event and an attempt at establishing a major regional event for bikers, according to organizers. It is set for July 22-23 — adding a second day over 2015’s inaugural event — and will greatly expand on everything, including food, activities and music.
“We’re kind of mirroring Sturgis, Hot Harley Nights and Awesome Biker Nights, which are all the way around (Yankton). We’re trying to draw from Norfolk, Sioux City and Sioux Falls, as well as all the smaller communities in between. We picked the date because it is actually two weeks after Hot Harley Nights. … Also, it’s two weeks before Sturgis, so it’s kind of right there in the rocking chair of motorcycle events right around it.”- organizer Jeff Dayhuff told the Press & Dakotan.
Dayhuff said there are plans to promote Yankton’s event at Hot Harley Nights.
He added there were some major positives learned from the 2015 event.
“One of the big things was the Meridian Bridge parade,” he said. “That was one of the big draws and that was one of the unique things that nobody has in any of the bike rallies going on.”
The 2015 rumble featured a bike parade across the Meridian Bridge that progressed through town to the lake area, and a handful of bands with a single block of Third Street blocked off to traffic. It was reported that 205 bikers registered last year, even though only 50 had been expected.
This year, the event will feature two poker runs — one on each day — two bands each night, a Miss Rock ‘N’ Rumble Contest, a loudest pipes contest and a tattoo contest. Four blocks of downtown will be blocked off for the bikes, street-dance area, the bands and at least six food vendors.
Dayhuff said there will be more additions.
“We’ve added the poker runs from demand,” he said. “We also have some charities involved and we also have some sponsorships. Those are all new things from last year.”
Proceeds from food, drink, T-shirt sales and sponsorships will go to charities including the Boys & Girls Club of Yankton, the Pink Ladies, the Dakota Theatre and the River City Domestic Violence Shelter.
He added that moving the Rumble to a time in between major events could help boost attendance.
“(Last year) it was the first week of Sturgis,” he said. “The reason we kind of started it was so that we could catch some motorcyclists coming down. We had free camping down by Riverside Park and we didn’t have anybody camp down there, so we decided to make it more of a freestanding event rather than piggyback on Sturgis.”
Organizers are hopeful that this could be a July event on par with Rockin’ Ribfest in June and Riverboat Days in August as time goes along.
Check out this video to see a glimpse of last year’s Rock ‘N’ Ramble!
The Meridian Bridge Parade:
Were you there? Are you going this year?
(Source: Press & Dakotan)