1996 was a busy year. The Summer Olympics were held in Atlanta, the Yankees became the World Series champs, Pokemon became part of the game world lexicon, there was a presidential election, Independence Day was the top-grossing movie of the year, the Spice Girls topped the pop charts, and a small group of motorcycle enthusiasts decided to raise money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of South Dakota.

That group of people at J&L Harley-Davidson in Sioux Falls organized the first Hot Harley Nights, which will celebrate its 24th Anniversary this week. Over the years this event has grown into a Sioux Falls tradition, and in the process has raised over $3 million dollars to grant wishes to children with critical illnesses.

Hot Harley Nights kicks off on Thursday, July 11, and runs through Saturday, July 13 with the celebration activities happening at J&L Harley-Davidson (2601 W 60th St North) and at the W.H. Lyon Fairgrounds (100 N Lyon Blvd).

Thursday Activities at J&L Harley-Davidson:

  • Family Night - Food, ice cream, and ice cold refreshments will be available, children's activities, and live music
  • Motorcycle Show
  • Raffles and Silent Auction
  • Rhett Rotten Wall of Death motorcycle performances
  • Registration and Packet Pick up

Friday Activities at J&L Harley-Davidson:

  • Raffles and Silent Auction
  • Live Auction
  • Harley-Davidson National Demo Fleet
  • Rhett Rotten Wall of Death motorcycle show
  • Food vendors
  • Free concert by Rock-N-Roll Damnation

Saturday Activities at J & L Harley-Davidson and the W.H. Lyon Fairgrounds:

  • Raffles and Silent auction continues
  • Live music
  • Casino Run
  • Motorcycle Parade to the W.H. Lyon Fairgrounds (gates at fairgrounds open at 4 PM)
  • Food, beverage, and merchandise vendors will be open
  • Live music from local artists
  • Free concert by Night Ranger

There is also a Pancake Feed on Sunday morning (July 14) at J&L from 9 to 11 AM to wrap up the celebration!

RV or tent camping is available at the fairgrounds (605-367-7178) and several Sioux Falls Hotels are offering special room rates to Hot Harley Nights participants.

For even more information see Hot Harley Nights and Make-A-Wish South Dakota.