Salute Those Who Serve at the Sturgis Buffalo Chip’s Military Tribute!
You and your friends
Buffalo Chip’s 27th Annual Freedom Celebration
Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018
4:00 p.m. – Veteran’s Charity Auction
7:30 p.m. - Roadhouse Deck Military Toast
8:00 p.m. – Tyler Southern Trike Presentation
8:00 p.m. - Veteran Assistance K9 Program Emotional Support Dog Presentation
10:00 p.m. - Main Stage Bob Hanson Distinguished Service Award Presentation and Star Spangled Banner:
Sturgis Buffalo Chip® CrossRoads and Amphitheater
Honor those who fight for our freedoms
Supporting soldiers has long been a tradition at the Buffalo Chip, and again this year the Chip will be dedicating an entire day to the acknowledgement of these brave men and women. Help honor the past and present members of our military during the 27th annual Freedom Celebration on Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018!
Experience a variety of powerful presentations, moving events and inspiring performances, all specifically designed to recognize those who have selflessly served and, in some instances, lost their lives during the Sturgis Buffalo Chip’s® Military Tribute Day.
In addition to official Freedom Celebration events, you have the opportunity throughout the Rally to honor those who have served by taking part in the nightly military toast on the Roadhouse Deck with Rod Woodruff and Greg Smith, visiting several meaningful military tributes located at Buffalo Chip’s free-access CrossRoads, and purchasing an official Buffalo Chip Red Shirt to benefit three worthy veterans charities.
Freedom Celebration Events
Veteran’s Charity Auction
Bring home a brand-new firearm, a one-of-a-kind piece of memorabilia or some cool biker gear by visiting the first ever Freedom Celebration Veteran’s Charity Auction at the free-access Buffalo Chip CrossRoads Thursday, Aug. 9 from 4:00-5:30. All are invited to attend and participate in this live and silent auction at the Big Engine Bar benefitting charities America’s Mighty Warriors, The Warrior Dog Foundation and Combat Wounded Coalition.
Tyler Southern Trike Presentation
USMC Veteran Tyler Southern Tyler was severely wounded in his tour in Afghanistan, losing his lower right arm and both of his lower legs. Although Tyler has had to overcome many difficult challenges as a triple amputee, he has remained positive and is an amazing husband and father of two. He is an inspiration for wounded American veterans. After awarding Tyler a Bob Hanson Distinguished Service Award in 2015, the Buffalo Chip made a vow to help Tyler regain his freedom to ride by building a custom trike. The specially modified trike will be presented to Tyler on the Buffalo Chip Main Stage during a special 2018 Freedom Celebration presentation.
Veteran Assistance K9 Program Emotional Support Dog Presentation
The life of a yet-to-be named South Dakota veteran will be forever changed when Joshua (Dogman) Perry of Baden K9 Inc. Kevin (Yoda) and Whitenect from Tier1SOF Inc. present them with a specially trained emotional support dog on the Buffalo Chip stage. The training the dog has received is designed to enable the warrior to re-engage with their environment, family and, most importantly, themselves.
Bob Hanson Distinguished Service Award
Each year the Buffalo Chip chooses members of our military to honor for their courage, sacrifices and heroic patriotism. Past recipients of this award include Senator John McCain, Colonel Steve Ritchie, Bob Woodruff, Retired Navy SEAL Tyrone Woods and Former Navy SEAL Glen Doherty. Buffalo Chip President Rod Woodruff will present this award to this year’s honorees on the main stage before a performance from Kid Rock.
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Share the day with some of our nation’s most inspiring and insightful authors, speakers, activists and retired military personnel, who will be giving speeches, signing books and mingling with guests.
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A military branch color guard will be presenting the colors on the Wolfman Jack Stage prior to a moving a cappella rendition of the Star Spangled Banner performed by Debbie Moore.
Freedom Celebration Events
Walk or ride through a majestic display of nearly 1,000 proudly waving American Flags near the West Campground Entrance. The Field of Flags honors soldiers past and present, including those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. One stately flag stands every 10 feet surrounding a reflection area containing a memorial stone honoring all branches of the military and POWs.
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AVTT Veterans Memorial Wall
Standing proudly behind the Battlefield Cross Sculpture and Field of Flags is the AVTT Veterans Memorial Wall. Each year the Patriot Guard Riders assist in putting up this wall so you can see the names and pay your respects to those who made the ultimate sacrifice while defending our freedoms.
On-Site Veterans Organizations
Combat Wounded Coalition
The Combat Wounded Coalition's vision is to guide combat-wounded Purple Heart Recipients to find a purpose-driven life and peace of mind after the impact of war. The coalition optimizes the potential of these warriors by mitigating the effects of trauma, expanding personal capabilities and inspiring them to find individual, unique purpose to create the life they want. In addition, CWC provides support to families of service members lost in combat, training or due to suicide or post traumatic stress.
America’s Mighty Warriors
The organization was founded by Debbie Lee after her son Marc was the first Navy SEAL to be killed in Iraq on August 2, 2006. In Marc’s last letter home, he asked for friends and family to “pass on the love and kindness and precious gift of human life”. Since then, America’s Mighty Warriors has been fighting to support our troops, the fallen and their families and to work with like-minded organizations to do the same.
Warrior Dog Foundation
Warrior Dog Foundation is dedicated to serving the special operations community, families and Special Operation Forces (SOF) working K-9 military dogs. The foundation strives to educate the public on the importance of K-9s in the combat environment and showcase the level of sacrifice these dogs give in support of our troops. Warrior Dog Foundation cares for each individual SOF K-9 with dignity and grace, helping to transition dogs from an operational environment into their state-of-the-art kennel facility and providing them with both mental and physical rehabilitation.
The Rapid City Vet Center exists as part of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to provide a broad range of counseling, outreach and referral services to eligible veterans in order to help them make a smoother post-war readjustment to civilian life. The Vet Center will be represented at the CrossRoads, where they will be providing counseling services for vets and their surviving parents, spouses, children and siblings.
Help the VFW maintain national and state veterans’ rehabilitation and service programs by purchasing a Buddy Poppy! The VFW Post 3312 of Belle Fourche, SD will be selling these symbolic memorial flowers throughout the campground on Thursday Aug. 10.
Vietnam Veterans of America – Deadwood Chapter
VVA CHAPTER #1039 welcomes all who served in Vietnam between February 28, 1961 and May 7, 1975, or in any duty location between August 5, 1964 and May 7, 1975. Joining VVA allows you to connect with other veterans, stay up with the latest on special events.
“Keep up the good work supporting our troops, Buffalo Chip! It's evident in all you do.” - Andy Sims