After 125 years, Sturgis has many reasons to celebrate. And its residents did Saturday afternoon with a dunk tank, vendors, music, and a bouncy slide.
But Ernie Miller wants to make sure people know exactly why they're celebrating. "Try to bring things back and let people know what happened 125 years ago," said Miller. "1902 cowboys, they had their old stories and so much of that is lost now. And history of these towns is lost too because it was not recorded."
Before retiring, Miller was a Sturgis school bus driver for 55 years. But besides driving a bus, Miller has made it somewhat of a hobby to preserve the town's history. "Just odds and ends, every place. Pick things up, people give you things," said Miller. "And I've been collecting it forever."
All in an effort to cherish a town he loves and give others a chance to appreciate the history.
"It's great to look back and look at all the old time photos and a reminder of how we began and it's just a great thing for all the members of the community," said Brandy Purcell, a Sturgis resident.
And as the town celebrated the past 125 years, people there were also looking to the future. "We have a lot of wonderful committees that have started up - Rebuilding Sturgis- they're trying to entice new businesses to come in which we are certainly doing that now," said Purcell. "I see Sturgis thriving."
"I think it will expand, having young people coming in and new businesses coming in, so it will always be here," said Miller.
People can get in on the celebration Sunday at 2:00 p.m. for a rodeo at the Sturgis Rodeo grounds.