Start your engines for Kool Deadwood Nites beginning Wednesday

Lee Harstad says this year should be the biggest one yet with about 450 pre-registered vehicles.

DEADWOOD, S.D. – Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines for the 28th Annual Kool Deadwood Nites.

People have already started rolling into Deadwood for the classic cars and the classic music.

“For the past 28 years, Deadwood has been welcoming classic cars of all shapes and sizes the last week in August,” Lee Harstad, executive director of the Deadwood Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Bureau, said. “And it’s a great way to say ‘thank you, summer. Thanks for having a great year for us and welcoming in fall.’ This year, we are anticipating more cars than ever. Our pre-registration numbers are through the roof and are the highest we’ve seen.”

Harstad says that typically they see half the cars pre-register while the other half will register when they get to Deadwood. So, with 450 pre-registered vehicles, there should be about 900 total, which will make this year the biggest one yet.

Kool BannerThere will be plenty of classic cars to see at the competitions, as well as in the parade. There will also be events like poker runs and a show and shine.

Classic cars can be walk-up registrations, but the vehicle has to be from 1973 or older.

New this year are free trolley rides sponsored by Do Deadwood and Drive Safe SD.

Do Deadwood is a group of hotels in the town that use BID8 occupancy tax revenues to sponsor events, and Drive Safe SD is a part of South Dakota Office of Highway Safety.Deadwood Trolley

“We know that parking is a little bit of a problem during this event just because it’s so busy in town,” Harstad said. “But if you can get on a trolley, you can ride for free anywhere along the trolley route.”

Akela Spa, which is a mile outside of Deadwood, will have free parking and shuttles to the Lower Main Welcome Center. The shuttle hours are 4 – 11 p.m., Thursday; 9 a.m. – 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday.

With the fives days, people can enjoy a number of events every day, such as nightly concerts.

“This year, we’re providing five nights of concerts. We have four nights free right downtown and then the fifth night, Deadwood Mountain Grand hosts a ticketed concert,” Harstad said. “So, there’s just a tremendous amount of entertainment and we have all these great cars. We’re going to see over 800 classic cars that are going to be registered for Kool Deadwood Nites this year. And there’s going to be definitely something for everybody.”


Event Schedule:

Wednesday, Aug. 24

  • Car Registration: Noon – 8 p.m., Deadwood Welcome Center (501 Main Street)
  • The Surfin’ Safari Band – Free Concert: 6 p.m. start, Outlaw Square
  • Early Car Auction Check-in: Contact McPherson Auction at 605-348-1369 for more information

Thursday, Aug. 25

  • Car Registration: 8 a.m. – 8 p.m., Deadwood Welcome Center (501 Main Street)
  • People’s Choice Awards Voting, Live DJ & Games: 4 – 9 p.m., History and Information Center Parking Lot, portions of Deadwood Main Street and the Welcome Center Lot
  • Memorabilia & Classic Car Auction: 6 p.m., Deadwood Mountain Grand (Contact McPherson Auction at 605-348-1369)
  • 14th Annual Sock Hop ft. The Grass Roots: 8 p.m., Main Street
  • People’s Choice Awards Results: After Concert, Main Street

Friday, Aug. 26

  • Rod Run Breakfast for registered car owners: 7 – 9:30 a.m., The Lodge at Deadwood (time is picked at registration)
  • Car Registration: 8 a.m. – 7 p.m., Deadwood Welcome Center (501 Main Street)
  • Classic Car Auction: 9 a.m., Deadwood Mountain Grand (Contact McPherson Auction at 605-348-1369)
  • Kool Deadwood Nites Rod Run: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., Escorted tour through Spearfish or Vanocker Canyon, and leaves from the Days of ’76 Rodeo Grounds. Vanocker itinerary includes time at Sturgis Dragway running the track sponsored by NAPA.
  • Free Main Street Concerts

Saturday, Aug. 27

  • Classic Car Competition/Judging: 8 a.m. – noon, Days of ’76 Event Center Grounds/Ferguson Field
  • Classic Car Auction: 9 a.m., Deadwood Mountain Grand (Contact McPherson Auction at 605-348-1369)
  • Poker Runs: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., around the Black Hills (walking and driving routes available)
  • Poker Run Awards Party: 5 p.m., Mr. Wu’s (560 Main Street)
  • Free Main Street Concerts

Sunday, Aug. 28


For more information on Kool Deadwood Nites, you can visit the city’s website.

Categories: ConnectCenter1-Events, Local News, South Dakota News