The 80th annual Sturgis motorcycle rally officially kicked off today (8/7) in South Dakota. Organizers are anticipating an attendance of around 250,000 people to the Black Hills rally, with ten official days of motorcycles, concerts, food and freedom. The rest of the world seems to be watching, with many media reports commenting that the Sturgis Rally is one of the only large-scale events worldwide that is happening during the COVID-19 pandemic. The event traditionally draws around a half million attendees, with the record being an estimated 750,000 during the 2015 75th anniversary event, according to

It will be interesting to see how the numbers stack up this year. There are various bands and entertainment on the schedule, but the rally is lacking the A-list headlining acts that they usually draw. You won't see the Eagles or Motley Crue or Gun's n Roses or Kenny Chesney or Aerosmith at this year's event. All the big bands are not touring because of coronavirus. There are, what some would call "B-list" entertainers taking the stages this year, as well as some of the usual events like dance shows, motorcycle races, etc.

The rally will obviously not have the thousands of Canadian attendees that usually show up, with the cross-country ban still in place. International tourists who may fly into the US and rent motorcycles for the trip are also likely to be way down, if not non-existent. In a town where a large portion of their annual revenue comes from two weeks of tourism, you can understand why some locals are hoping for the best this year.

If you can't make it to Sturgis (for whatever reasons), you can at least check-in virtually with a number of live webcams from the event. I started checking them last night, as bikers rolled into town in a big thunderstorm and I've found myself easily distracted with the live shots throughout the day today. Funny side note... I was watching one camera earlier today where a dude was walking across the sidewalk and an attractive woman was passing him on the crosswalk going the other direction. The guy did a TOTAL turn-around-and-stare at the girl's backside as she walked away. You never know when the cameras are watching, lol.

Here are three cameras that are streaming the view from downtown Sturgis that you can enjoy at your (socially distanced) leisure.



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