Easyriders Publisher Sues Sturgis Easyriders Saloon In Contract Dispute

Paisano Publications, the publisher of Easyriders magazine has filed last Friday a breach-of-contract suit against the owner of a Sturgis bar (North Dakota based KSLB&D Inc.) alleging that the bar/saloon has stopped using the Easyriders mark in violation of vendor and licensing agreements. Paisano states in its lawsuit that it is entitled to a royalty of sales of food, beverage and merchandise and is the exclusive agent to sell vendor space adjacent to Easyriders Saloon & Steakhouse, which is at the intersection of Main Street and Junction Avenue in Sturgis. The 23,000-square-foot facility features a restaurant, multiple bars, a stage and a third-floor private meeting and events area.

The suit filed Friday alleges that bar owners sent notice at the end of May to terminate the vendor agreement, claiming Paisano had materially breached the contract by failing to sell sufficient vendor space ahead of the 2012 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in August. Paisano accuses the bar owners of breaching the contract by covering up the Easyriders logos with tarps, acting as their own sales agent for vendor space and improperly trying to terminate the vendor agreement.

The removal of all Easyriders affiliation “was a transparent attempt to avoid its royalty and commission obligations,” the magazine company said. The suit seeks an injunction to prevent the bar from covering up the signs and using a different name. (photo @cyril huze)

31 Responses to “Easyriders Publisher Sues Sturgis Easyriders Saloon In Contract Dispute”

  1. 1 Brett Jun 26th, 2012 at 8:22 am

    I know and have been a couple of times to this bar on Lazelle street in Sturgis. I don’t understand why the bar owner signed a contract with Easyriders. It’s not the name Easyriders on a banner making people visit this bar-restaurant. Easyriders has no appeal value to attract patrons during Bike Week, even less during the rest of the year (restaurant doing birthday parties, weddings, etc.). It should be Easyriders paying the bar for putting its name on it and selling its shitty line of roadware inside. Not the opposite. I guess the bar owner realized his mistake when he signed with Easyriders and found a good pretext (Easyriders unable to find vendors to rent a spot on the adjacent parking lot during the Black Hills Rally) to get out of his stupid royalties contract. Easyriders would have to pay me, not the opposite.

  2. 2 Shifter Jun 26th, 2012 at 8:24 am

    Agree with you Brett.

  3. 3 Rodent Jun 26th, 2012 at 10:08 am

    Let the war begin

  4. 4 toby Jun 26th, 2012 at 10:09 am

    Agree with Brett too. This bar does 80% of its business during a two to three week period around Bike Week. My understanding is that most of the sections are closed much of the year. It’s a great place to cool off and watch the action from though. Convenient. I could care less about the name.

  5. 5 cigarman Jun 26th, 2012 at 11:11 am

    I’m starting to think that Sturgis has run its course. It seems that it’s one lawsuit after another and the real reason for Sturgis seems to be fading away. Big money is like a cancer and eventually ruins everything. Pretty soon Disney will take over the place and turn it into a theme park for all the family and kids to enjoy!!

  6. 6 Flanativ Jun 26th, 2012 at 11:18 am

    Just like Daytona’s Bike Week/Biktoberfest,it’s all about the money.

  7. 7 Steve Jun 26th, 2012 at 11:40 am

    This is all interesting, given that KSLB&D Inc. has also purchased the property next door that was the Broken Spoke Sturgis. Maybe they will try to roll out a new brand name…

  8. 8 GuitarSlinger Jun 26th, 2012 at 12:17 pm

    So ……. let us have a look at just the current legal debacles surrounding Sturgis . We’ve got the Event suing the Town for naming rights . Easy Rider magazine suing the Easy Rider Saloon . And thats just the newest items on the books from what I’m hearing . Heck … lets make this simple .

    As of Tomorrow ; Everybody involved in any way with the Sturgis Bike Week ……… Sue everybody else !

    And if they are determined to drag the event into the abyss with legal this and legal that ….. I recommend we all head up there and have us a major wing ding before its all said and done ……… IMHO 😉

  9. 9 Bruce Jun 26th, 2012 at 12:26 pm

    Easyriders name is not worth nuch these days.

  10. 10 CafeSportyTC Jun 26th, 2012 at 12:33 pm

    everything that seems to touch sturgis in any way becomes a legal dispute….

  11. 11 NutCracker Jun 26th, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    “Can’t we all just get along?” / rodney king

  12. 12 Greeko Jun 26th, 2012 at 12:52 pm

    Anyway, I don’t see this bar surviving more than one year. Too big, too costly to maintain. More money lost in Sturgis.

  13. 13 wolf Jun 26th, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    A contract is a contract and should be followed. Without reading it I don’t know what was agreed to by whom. I would guess, (unless thier lawyers were really bad), that both parties have “get out” clauses and if either side did not live up to thier end and if this is part of a “get out” clause then that should be that. If one side is not living up to thier end of the agreement and is trying to get benefit outside of the predetermined and agreed to terms than shame on them. In the end, the only winners will be the laywers.

    We have been there before and plan to go again. It is a great place to sit down and eat, away from the street food and bustle. I will be a repeat customer regardless of the name on the side. I am not against Easyriders, but that place does not need thier name to attract people. They can easily stand on thier own. Free enterprise!

  14. 14 Boss Hawg Jun 26th, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    Maybe Big Bear Choppers will get involved too like they have as a sponsor here.

    Boss Hawg

  15. 15 Jeff Nicklus Jun 26th, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    Drama over money and power in Sturgis ?????? Nah, say it ain’t so! I can’t even imagine! NOT!

    Over & Out,


  16. 16 Boss Hawg Jun 26th, 2012 at 4:48 pm

    You betcha Jeff… Dave Nichols Editor, Easyriders Magazine and Big Bear Choppers….you just wait to see what plays out.

    Boss Hawg

  17. 17 BobS Jun 26th, 2012 at 5:01 pm

    Maybe bikers should file a class action suit against any party that has sued another pertaining to the Sturgis rally…I’m sure we’ve all suffered emotional distress and lost productivity because douchebags are ruining our rally.

  18. 18 Rodent Jun 26th, 2012 at 6:47 pm

    Just saw the new billboards on all entrances to Strugis.




  19. 19 MADRider Jun 26th, 2012 at 7:39 pm

    I gotta agree with BobS we all should sue as a class action, or maybe just boycott sturgis and refuse to spend any cash on anything with or related to sturgis, and not attend the rally. Maybe just Maybe someone will get the point. How about starting or just attending other less big buisness centered “rallies”. How about starting some new rally centrally located less comercial and ride , ride ride.

  20. 20 Nobody Jun 26th, 2012 at 8:50 pm

    Once a rally hits a certain size it flat lines, then it gets even bigger and starts coasting down hill. After that it either smashes into a tree or snaps awake and makes the turn in time to head back to good ground. In my pessimistic opinion, Sturgis is nodding off and rolling on the throttle at the same time.

  21. 21 Boss Hawg Jun 27th, 2012 at 7:27 am

    Scenery, Great Times and, of course, much less expensive any time before or after the rally. As for the rally itself, you can see most of the entertainers and the side show freaks anywhere else you choose.

    Spend your money wisely with local businesses that really care about the biker and motorcycle enthusiast…..Stop supporting those like Piasano’s blue sky an wiffle dust 2 ring circus act…

    Combined with Berkowitz’s Hot Leathers …they just prey on stupidity and the dumb asses that buy the mags and their products.

    Get A Life!
    Boss Hawg

  22. 22 MotorcycleMarc Jun 27th, 2012 at 8:44 am

    The rise and fall of Sturgis. I miss the good old days of this event. Sad really. Time to find another biker destination…

  23. 23 MotorcycleMarc Jun 27th, 2012 at 8:46 am

    The rise and fall of Sturgis. I miss the good old days of this event. Sad really. Time to find another biker destination.

  24. 24 Bigwillie Jun 27th, 2012 at 9:51 am

    Anyone who knows JT or Easyriders understands everything that they do is to promote an outdated name that does nothing but hang onto an old movie. They used to be about the lifestyle and photos of scanky women nude but we see more now every time you open a stray email. Experance tells me this is all about the Easyriders organization not filling the space just like the same problems it has had with many other projects. The price of the three week rent for an out of the way spot for a tshirt shop can only be so much. They hit the breaking point and people have said no. Time to lower prices and look at the available vendors that can rent space and give them a break. I rented a spot in 01 for 10k that is now 100k who could afford that kind of increase of course were not there. I could sell enough in 6 months for that rent let alone 3 weeks.

  25. 25 Brescia Jun 27th, 2012 at 9:56 am

    Want to sell a motorcycle product? Don’t put the EZ name on it.

  26. 26 Jeff Nicklus Jun 27th, 2012 at 11:42 am


    Desperado Junction in Lead ….. ZERO VENDOR FEES! Still have two spots remeaining for the 2012 Rally, if you are interested contact me.


    Over & Out,


  27. 27 Darryl Briggs Jul 2nd, 2012 at 12:34 pm

    Wow, tough crowd. Seems everyone on here is hating. Especially if someone is trying to make some money. Hey Cyril, stop selling ads for this site and operate it strictly as a money losing venture. That seems to be the message around here.

    I don’t know the contract language between the bar and Easyriders, but I’m willing to bet no other readers on here do either. But what surprises me is the amount of anger against Easyriders. Say what you will about them, but damn, they have been in the industry a long time supporting the industry and the lifestyle. Sure they arem’t operating as they used to, and I dare say that no one reading this that has their own company is operating as they used to years ago. Or if they work for someone, then their employer isn’t operating as it did years ago. You want to bash a company for doing what it needs to do to survive? Wake up. The motorcycle industry has changed, the magazine print industry has changed, and rally business has changed. Instead of bashing people for trying to make a living, I intend to simply enjoy the rally as best I can. You can still ride the great roads in Sturgis, and you can choose where you want to spend your dollars.

    I don’t even remotely compare this situation to Berkowitz and the trademark case. There are plenty of bars to choose from to spend your money on in Sturgis. This is not a case of Easyriders saying a percentage of all beer money needs to go to them. This is a case of two businesses signing a contract and now their is a dispute over that contract. Let their lawyers figure it ou, stop bitchin’, and go riding.

    Oh well, I’ll get off my soap box.

    On one more note, everyone go see Jeff! He has a great venue going in Deadwood. Met him last year for the first time. Good people deserve good support.

    See you in Sturgis, ride safe.


  28. 28 Blackmax Jul 2nd, 2012 at 6:44 pm

    Too bad seemed like a nice place, when I visted last year
    No diffrent than any of the other “Joints” …..
    Still mad that I missed “Desperado Junction”

  29. 29 Jay Aug 23rd, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    I was not impressed with the bands at all but went to easyriders because one of my friends was working there. When they had a break they came over to say hi and bs for a few minutes then they went right back to work. I found out the next day that the owner ripped into my friend for coming over and talking to me. I will never spend another single dollar in easyriders ever again.

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