In the midst of the still-raging COVID-19 pandemic that has infected over five million Americans and killed more than 162,000, Smash Mouth played a set at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally's Buffalo Chip concert series with the group saying they took all the safety precautions possible at the Sunday (Aug. 9) South Dakota event.
"The promoter did a fantastic job with their Covid protocol. They had a very strict social distancing and mask policy in place for all workers," band manager Robert Hayes tells Billboard in an email. "Everything backstage was sanitized, etc. The band has their own Covid addendum to their rider as well and the promoter and venue adhered to all of our requests. We spent endless hours advancing this event to make sure that it was pulled off as safely as possible and we are very happy with the outcome."
According to USA Today, the annual rough-and-ready motorcycle gathering that typically finds more than half a million bikers descending on the town of Sturgis has been scaled down to 250,000 expected guests this year, still making it one of the largest events to take place since the pandemic shut down the nation in early March. The paper reported that festival-goers will be "largely free of social distancing restrictions" that have become commonplace elsewhere in the nation.