The Return To The Donnie Smith Bike Show

By Brad Schneck

It’s always the end of March that the Donnie Smith Bike Show takes over the RiverCentre in St. Paul, MN for the largest and longest-running motorcycle show and swap meet in the Midwest. For the Sturgis Buffalo Chip®, it has been an annual pilgrimage to kick off riding season and visit friends in the Twin Cities. All that came to a screeching halt with COVID-19 in 2020, and for the last two years the show promoter, Neil Ryan, has worked tirelessly to get back to business.

This year, the show finally got the green light to bring back some of the coolest custom bikes and motorcycle shops around to drool over. So once again, the Chip loaded up and made the trek for the return to the Donnie Smith Show.

First off, it’s a bike show. So, the Largest Music Festival in Motorcycling® had to bring along a couple of kick-ass motorcycles to show off. Thankfully, there were a couple lying around.

The 2022 Legends Ride auction bike built by Cory and Zach Ness was a standout feature. The 2020 Road Glide is decked out tip to tail with Arlen Ness gold anodized parts and accessories. You can bid to win this bike by participating in the ride on Monday, Aug. 8, 2022.

Tim Sutherland and Lloyd Greer just unveiled the Buffalo Chip B4 signature series #002 at Daytona only a couple weeks prior, so the Chip decided to bring it to the Twin Cities and show the Minnesota crowd what to expect from the new owners of Indian Motorcycle St. Paul. It’s safe to say show goers were impressed.

TONS of people signed up to win the King of Sturgis Giveaway, which gives one lucky winner a $30,000 VIP Sturgis Rally experience with prizes from Liv Hospitality, Black Hills Harley-Davidson and the Buffalo Chip. You can sign up, too, by going to

The Ride to the Chip™ is a brand new event coming to the Sturgis Buffalo Chip® this year. You could learn about the ride and grab yourself a t-shirt so you were prepared for the launch this summer from Indian Motorcycle St. Paul.

There was a HUGE floor full of motorcycles to check out, and the Buffalo Chip crew took the opportunity to cruise the show and see all the drool-worthy bikes that showed up. Here are the Buffalo Chip picks from the show:

The Mary P. Award

The Chip’s Marketing Director chose this super clean 1973 Honda CL350 that sat on the Pro Class carpet. It was a beautiful resto, and we could see Mary Panerio’s eyes glaze over as she envisioned herself cruising the Black Hills on this little ripper.

The Ertman Award

This lay frame big wheel caught the eye of PR Manager, Cody Ertman. The overall engineering on this bike was seriously impressive but almost overshadowed by the beautiful and intricate engraving work throughout. Cody loved this bike so much, he is committed to getting his endorsement this year just in case he ever gets an offer to ride this thing in our next Rusty Wallace Ride.

The Video Brad Award

Multimedia Director, Brad Schneck has a serious love affair with choppers, and this shovelhead was the belle of the chopper ball. It boasted a custom shovelhead motor packed into a single tube frame with too many details and custom features to mention here. We really hope this thing shows up for the Buffalo Chip’s School’s Out Chopper Show this year so we can see it again.

Camp Zero Award

This far-out little Grom had all the ingredients necessary to fit in over at Buffalo Chip’s Camp Zero. Namely a Kool-Aid Man on the tank letting us know exactly what this bike thinks about having a good time….”Oh yeahhh!”

Coolest Paint Award

There were definitely some radical paint jobs on the floor, but this simple flower design with a splatter base is the one that really stood out. The colors and style used to paint on the flowers was lovely and unique.

Overall, the return of the Donnie Smith Bike Show was an excellent time. There were wicked bikes, hundreds of people to share our love for music and good times with, and a perfect excuse to let loose a little bit and party with friends in the Twin Cities. It was good to be back at the legendary Donnie Smith Show and here’s to many more shows to come.

Did you check out the Donnie Smith Bike Show this year? Tell us what you enjoyed most in the comments below!