In January, Harley-Davidson signed a 75-year deal with Sturgis Motorcycle Rally that makes The Motor Company the official motorcycle of the Rally.
Following the announcement, Harley reported a new permanent plaza would be constructed downtown, the structure integrating bricks from Harley-Davidson’s Milwaukee headquarters. The name? The Harley-Davidson Rally Point.
And on Wednesday, Harley broke ground on the open-year-round plaza that will be located on the corner of Main Street and Harley-Davidson Way. But Harley didn’t utilize shovels to break ground; instead, it used motorcycles to tear the ground away.
Tearing up the ground were a 1978 Super Glide with a Shovelhead engine, a 2015 Street 750, and a Project LiveWire electric motorcycle. Harley says the Rally Point will be open ahead of the 75th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, which takes place August 3-9.
“Sturgis is a mecca for riders around the world. The Harley-Davidson Rally Point establishes a new site in downtown Sturgis for people to gather year round,” said Bill Davidson, great-grandson of Harley-Davidson founder William A. Davidson and vice president of the Harley-Davidson Museum.
“The renaming of 2nd Street to Harley-Davidson Way honors the legacy of our company’s founders along with all the extraordinary men and women who ride our motorcycles.”
The Harley-Davidson Rally Point will feature a stage for events, concerts and weddings, and an elevated are for riders to take pictures on their motorcycles with Sturgis sign as a backdrop.
Harley says officials from Sturgis and employees from Harley-Davidson worked with FourFront Design, Inc. in Rapid City to develop the final design and renderings. Eirik Heikes with FourFront Design, Inc. is the principle landscape architect and Jessica Hawn lead planner.
“Breaking ground on The Rally Point solidifies Harley-Davidson’s presence in Sturgis,” said Sturgis Mayor Mark Carstensen. “The Rally Point will be a hub for riders during the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and it will serve as a gathering point for the citizens of Sturgis throughout the year.”
Harley reports that to ensure the new multi-purpose space builds on the legacy of the brand and is pure Harley-Davidson, 74 bricks from the company’s Milwaukee headquarters, a building that once housed the company’s factory dating back more than 100 years, and one brick from the Harley-Davidson Museum will be integrated into The Rally Point’s final construction.
As part of the ceremonial groundbreaking, the bricks traveled 900 miles from Milwaukee on Harley-Davidson motorcycles and were delivered to Mayor Carstensen by members of the Harley Owners Group. Carey Hart, motocross star and 2015 Grand Marshall of the Sturgis City of Riders Mayor’s Ride, received the bricks with Mayor Carstensen, Harley says.
As riders swap out their cold weather riding gear for lightweight jackets and vests, now is the time to visit a Harley-Davidson dealership and start preparing your bike for the summer riding season and the 75th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. The party starts Aug. 1, 2015. For inspiration and pictures from the 2014 Sturgis Rally and to see the design images of The Rally Point, visit www.h-d.com/sturgis.