Sturgis and Fort Meade celebrates 140 years with a focus on history

STURGIS, S.D. (KEVN) - It has been 140 years since the birth of Sturgis and Old Fort Meade and
their historical society is putting the area's history at the forefront of its special anniversary.

"We want people to understand that every community has a history, every community has a deep history that's colorful and fun and in some cases a little decadent," said Mark Rambow, president of the Sturgis and Meade County Historical Society

This past weekend, families got to witness cavalry re-enactors and shoot their old and empty Cavalry guns, a junior trooper rodeo for the kids, get their old-time photos taken, and much more.

For a city that is filled with motorcycles a week out of each year, some say the real reason for today is to capitalize on what was ...

"This area is splendid with history from the Cavalry Year, the Gold Rush, the settlers, so much history and I just think it should be a focus of something in addition to the rally," said John Tesnow, director-curator of the Old Fort Meade Museum

... and what could be.

"It's important for us to continue to invest in history so we know where we made mistakes and try not to make them again," Tesnow continued.

"I think every community needs to reach back and embrace their history whether it's good or bad or fun. Every community has that history and everybody should be interested in it."

Marking the end of a long weekend with a re-dedication of the Nolin Monument, a trip down memory lane through photographs, and a bus tour of some of the historic homes reflecting the era.

"I hope they'll walk away with really knowing that we live in a very beautiful part of the country and we have a lot of things to celebrate here and that we've had a good time today," said Randy Bender, who's on the Board of Directors of the Old Fort Meade Cavalry Museum.

Bender said the goal this year was to give people something to look forward to at the end of another decade.