Even if you still never participated to the Sturgis Rally, and wherever your home town is around the world, you heard and read many times about the Legendary Buffalo Chip...and wished you were there. If you are a regular visiting Sturgis every August, it’s almost impossible that you didn’t visit or sleep or watch at least one rock concert, or go to a Bike Show, meet friends, drink, eat and much more at the place considered “The Best Biker Party Anywhere” in the world. I am certain that if you are not an insider belonging to the motorcycle industry, you have wondered about the owner and manager of this 580-acre biker campground and entertainment place known at “The Legendary Buffalo Chip.”
Rod “Woody” Woodruff is the man who, during 31 years has developed the Chip in what has become now a large enterprise, a self-contained city during 2 summer weeks every year. Rod was already a successful local lawyer having reached a level of achievement authorizing him to argue law in front of the United States Supreme Court when he decided to transform a cow pasture into a campground and entertainment place welcoming bikers who were considered at the time a little bit too unruly inside Sturgis city limits.
Since then, the Buffalo Chip never stopped to evolve, offering more room and types of accommodation (tents, campers, RV’s, cabins), more entertainment with the biggest-name acts from Bob Dylan to Aerosmith performing on one of the country’s largest stage equipped with a state-of-the-art sound system, bringing each year brand new activities like the Rat’s Hole Bike show, the Michael Lichter Exhibition, a Pro Hill Climb and mud racing, many sweepstakes and contests, always building new facilities for more entertainment and comfort .
It’s in a converted church building moved to the Chip that Rod Woordruff made his office . It is vast, featuring many windows and a deck from which he gets a panoramic view of his campground. Not surprisingly, furniture is typical of those practicing a legal profession, but mixed with western flair objects (of course several buffalos “live” here) and multiple autographed music memorabilia (mainly guitars) from artists who went to perform at the Chip. On his desk, Rod keeps his current readings, privileging finance and management (“The Thank You Economy”, “Great By Choice”) but also some books about Indian tribes history (for example, “Watch Me On The Mountain” the story of Geronimo.)
Web surfing and emailing is made from a laptop connected to a wall-installed big screen. On the walls, in addition to his lawyer diploma certifying his capacity in pleading at the US Supreme Court, are displayed 3 of the best photographic works of Michael Lichter, all shot around Sturgis. And if you are a VIP, Rod will pour you a drink at his office bar before taking you to a comfy couch to talk Sturgis history, local charities, maybe your next gig on his stage and of course bikes.
Contrary to popular belief, planning and organizing “The Best Biker Party Anywhere” during 2 weeks is a long year enterprise. As a matter of fact a permanent crew of 20 employees is in charge of just maintaining the Buffalo Chip grounds when bikers are back home. We all know that to be a party guy (and of course Rod is one) you need to be and stay in great shape. So, Rod likes to arrive at work around 5.30 am and begins each of his days at the Chip by exercising in a very well equipped gym room located steps from his office… The 2012, 72nd Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally dates are August 3 to 12. Lodging and entertainment info at Legendary Buffalo Chip.