Deadwood’s biggest event that draws thousands each August is back in 2020, but with pandemic precautions this year.
DEADWOOD, S.D. — An event to the Northern Hills that draws thousands will go on this year.
2020 will be the twenty-sixth anniversary of Kool Deadwood Nites, an event that brings together car enthusiasts for five days of classic cars and free concerts, starting on August 26 and ending on August 30. Even with precautions in place, event-goers are encouraged to come based on their comfort level.
Lee Hardstad, Exec. Dir. of the Deadwood Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau says,
“If you are not comfortable – certainly do not attend the event, feel free to take a year out. We want everyone to come that is comfortable in being here and we want everyone to enjoy safely.”
Hardstad says this years’ classic car pre-registration is tracking in line with last year. This year, concerts begin on Wednesday with the Surfin’ Safari Band at Outlaw Square and headliners concerts include the Boxtops, Orleans and Motortown Allstars.
Kool Deadwood Nites is the town’s biggest event of the year, and the decision to host this year was not taken lightly.
“It took a lot of discussions, and eventually if we are able to follow to protocols we put in place, we feel like we will be able to put on the event safely.”
Listed are the precautions that have been put in place because of the COVID-19 pandemic:
- Hand sanitizing stations will be set up at vendor booths on Main Street and Outlaw Square.
- Local organizations will be invited to set up on Main Street and sell/donate Personal Protective Equipment.
- Touch areas, benches and other high-traffic areas will be sanitized prior to the event.
- Signage will be placed throughout the event area reminding visitors to socially distance, stay home when sick, wash hands, etc. Signage will also be on Main Street near the crowd area for concerts, reminding people that chairs must remain on the yellow line (tape), and if they are not, they will be removed; keep sidewalk paths clear; no standing between rows of chairs.
- Tape will be spread in an appropriate distance as to where chairs can be placed on Main Street, keeping 6-foot distances between rows.
- Protocol reminders will be on signage along with on two Jumbotrons (one on Main Street, one at Outlaw Square).
- The ‘dance’ floor in front of the Main Street stage will become a seating area with visible chair markings or will be at reduced capacity.
- Announcements will be made throughout the event reminding people to follow proper protocols, etc.
- To help spread people out, a Jumbotron will be placed on Main Street near Lee Street that will show the concert and announcements, and another will be in use showing the same at Outlaw Square.
- Protocol information will be included in the registration packets and in all media releases prior to the event as well as the website.
- Depot parking will distance parking.
- There will not be a VIP tent behind the stage and backstage access will be limited to performers and staff; there will not be any meet and greets with the bands.
- Performers will be made aware that if there’s a blatant disregard for social distancing in the crowd, they will be asked to make announcements during their set, to the point where music would be on hold.
- Staff members and designated volunteers will have their temperatures taken prior to starting their shifts for the day and those showing a high fever or having symptoms will not be allowed to work.
Click here for the Kool Deadwood Nites website.