There was likely a tear in many a beer last week when news emerged of the fire that destroyed the Full Throttle Saloon in Sturgis. The home away from home for hundreds of thousands – if not millions – of Sturgis faithful including the million plus who visited Sturgis for the just completed 75th anniversary edition. The hallowed hall of hooch was reduced to smouldering ashes last week. The accidental cause of the fire has now been determined to have been a power cord to a keg fridge. Reports say that 500 gallons of grain alcohol from the onsite distillery were stored at the compound which would have added to the intensity of the fire as well as the fact there are no fire hydrants nearby.
The Full Throttle Saloon hosted concerts, a reality tv show, tattoo parlors, stunt shows, zip lines, burnout pits and lots of drinking. The owner of the world’s largest biker bar, Michael Ballard, has yet to decide if he will rebuild the establishment saying it is too soon after the fire to make a decision. What remains standing are cabins next to the bar where revelers could spend the Sturgis week within walking distance of the free-spirited festivities but what they have to walk to next year remains to be seen.