Friday, May 13, 2011

Deadwood Days

In 1976 a couple of local merchants got together and came up with a plan to perk up the slow business days of summer. One of them noted in a book of famous events that Wild Bill Hickok had been shot in Deadwood, South Dakota, while holding pairs of Aces and Eights in his poker hand, one hundred years earlier. The idea for a giant weekend party started to formulate, along with the name Deadwood Days.

Other downtown business owners and members of the Town came to terms on what would be the first of many summer celebrations every August. The very first Deadwood Days weekend had folks dressed in Old West regalia, and many of the downtown shops temporarily changed their names. Books Strings & Things became the Thundergrit Hotel, while Mr. Fooz Sub Shop was dubbed the Aces & Eights Saloon. The popular bar at 117 South Main was renamed the Silver Dollar Saloon, and there you would have found cowpokes and saloon girls quenching their thirst. There was even a kissing booth in town where a tired, dusty cowboy could get a smooch from a pretty gal for one silver dollar.

Deadwood Days was a huge success, and continued for three more consecutive years. In 1981 it was renamed Steppin' Out.


  1. The guy wearing the Native American outfit is Humbert Lertora.

  2. I was there also.