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PNS Daily Newscast - October 23, 2017 


We begin the week with President Donald Trump urging GOP House members to support the Senate budget bill; a new report tracks a growing “right” to discriminate at both the state and federal level; and we will let you know why Trump budget cuts are being labeled a threat to waterways in the Midwest.

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Eating Free Ice Cream Will Help Veterans at Sturgis Motorcycle Rally

More than 700,000 people attended the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in 2015 for the 75th anniversary. (Andrew Cullen/Getty Images)
More than 700,000 people attended the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in 2015 for the 75th anniversary. (Andrew Cullen/Getty Images)
August 3, 2017

STURGIS, S.D. – One of the country's largest motorcycle rallies roars into action this Friday.

Now in its 77th year, the renowned Sturgis Motorcycle Rally regularly draws nearly a half-million people, making it the perfect venue for AARP South Dakota's efforts to help military veterans this year.

Erik Gaikowski, state director for AARP South Dakota, was at the rally last year and will be there again during this year's opening weekend. His organization will be handing out treats suited for the summer weather.

"We're giving away free ice cream or popsicles, and every time we give away an ice cream or popsicle, we donate $1 to Fisher House,” he states. “Fisher House is a home for veterans that are going through medical treatment at about 29 medical facilities across the country."

The Fisher House Foundation since 1990 has helped more than 300,000 veteran families while their loved ones get care.

The rally lasts through Aug. 13. It set an attendance record in 2015, when more than 700,000 people gathered in Sturgis. The rally started back in 1938.

As the popularity of the rally has swelled – much like the small town of Sturgis does annually – Gaikowski says he's noticed a shift in the demographic.

"We're involved with it because a lot of our members enjoy coming to Sturgis,” he states. “We've definitely seen an increase of the 50-plus population at Sturgis."

Gaikowski says about 8,000 people came to AARP's booth last year. In addition to free ice cream, the organization is working with Google to provide virtual reality demonstrations.

Eric Tegethoff, Public News Service - SD