Smash Mouth, Trapt, Buckcherry and more are set to play a South Dakota music festival with optional masks and social distancing requirements. The annual Sturgis Buffalo Chip motorcycle rally and concert series is a multi-day festival being held Aug. 7-16. In addition to the aforementioned bands, it will also feature performances from Big Skillet, Saving Abel, Drowning Pool, and Quiet Riot and others.
The festival has found itself at the center of a lot of conversations lately, as organizers will not be requiring attendees to wear masks or follow social distancing guidelines amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Organizers are, however, encouraging everyone to follow the social distancing guidelines outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Festival workers will also be handing out masks at the entrance and encouraging people to wear them. Additionally, Spin notes that the amphitheater hosting the festival will be reduced to 50 percent capacity. "We are going to have quite a few people here, not nearly as many as everybody would have expected but we are going to have a lot of people here," Buffalo Chip owner Rod Woodruff told Newscenter1. "And they’re all coming to have a good time and to see friends that they haven’t seen probably for a year."
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Mask-wearing has become a much-debated topic among citizens, with many choosing to do it due to the advice from health care and disease experts. Others have expressed that it is within their rights as an American to not wear a mask. President Donald Trump has not issued a national mandate on masks, but has been photographed wearing one himself lately, during some public events, and has been recently encouraging all citizens to do it. "You have many places in the country where people stay very long distance," he previously said. "But I'm all for masks, I think masks are good."
U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams urged all Americans to wear masks, especially if they want college sports to come back. "If you want the return of college football this year, wear a face covering. If you want a chance at prom next spring, wear a face covering," Adams said. "Please, please, please, wear a face covering when you go out in public. It is not an inconvenience. It is not a suppression of your freedom." He then added, "This mask, this face covering, actually is an instrument of freedom for Americans if we all use it."