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Kool Deadwood Nites

“Kool Deadwood Nites brings car lovers together for four days full of classic cars, classic music and classic fun. It’s a 50’s and 60’s sock hop - Deadwood style. Come and enjoy parades, show and shines and free concerts on Main Street featuring the biggest names in rock ‘n roll history” (Deadwood, 2014).

Chuck Turbiville – Mayor of Deadwood
“About twenty years ago, the city of Deadwood wanted to host a summer festival that would entertain both our local people and our visitors. Kool Deadwood Nites began as a two day event inviting people to come and show their old cars, and within the first few years, it really took off,” says Chuck Turbiville, Mayor of Deadwood.

“It grew to the point where we closed off Main Street, put up a stage, and brought in some of the older rock groups for a free concert. The first one I saw was Chubby Checker, an icon of the 50’s and 60’s,” says Turbiville. “Then we expanded it to the point where we had a poker run, show and shines and trophies. We have a sock hop where we dance and encourage people to wear the poodle skirts. The event just keeps growing and growing. We’ve included a fourth day this year, so it’s Thursday, August 21st through Sunday, August 24th. We’ve got great bands playing as well.”

“I’ve seen people bring their lawn chairs as early as 5:30 or 6 a.m. in order to claim their spot for the concert. It fills Main Street. Kool Deadwood Nites brings hundreds of thousands of dollars to the city of Deadwood. That money also spills over to Spearfish, Lead, Sturgis, Whitewood, and Belle Fourche. It’s hard to find a vacant room in the surrounding area because there are so many people. Hotels and restaurants are packed. It’s a huge economic event for the area.”

“Never Been to Another Show Like It”
Dave and Carrie Marco of Spearfish, South Dakota have been attending Kool Deadwood Nites since they moved to the area in 2001. Both Dave and Carrie enjoy classic cars and enjoying going to drive-ins, show and shines, and cruising around the Hills in their beautifully restored classics.

Dave says, “I’ve been in the business of building cars for thirty-five years. It’s my hobby and it’s also my job. I work in a body shop, but building classic cars is my hobby. I have a ’65 Chevy Malibu convertible that I’ve owned for twenty years. I’ve always wanted to restore it and build it right. It was a 4 1/2 year build on the Malibu. Everything has been changed out on it. Now it’s set up as a Pro-Touring car. The back end has been mini-tubbed so I can get bigger tires under it. It has a lower stance and sits on an Air Ride suspension. The interior is custom, and it has a custom suspension and exhaust. It has a 383 Stroker in it and a 700R4 Transmission. I also had a custom convertible top built for it.”

“I’ve always liked that body style. To tell you the truth, you don’t see very many of those kinds of cars. They’re kind of hard to find. Being a convertible, when I saw it I knew that’s the one I wanted to have.”

“I did about ninety percent of the work by myself. I have a pretty good sized garage that I work from at home. My first win with the car was in 2009 so I probably started the project in 2005 or 2004.”

“I actually bought the Malibu for myself as a birthday present. After I bought it, it went into storage until I decided what direction I wanted to go with it. Then when I figured out what I wanted to do, I sold a Camaro to pay for the restoration,” laughs Dave. “I never drafted out the project on paper. I just knew it was going to take quite a bit of money to get it to the level I envisioned in my head. I had to save my pennies.”

“After I got the Malibu done, I needed another project to work on so I bought a 1963 Chevy ll Nova. That project escalated quickly. The more I worked on it, the more it turned into something we wanted to drive.”

“My wife just won the Mile High Show in Lead with the Nova last week. Her name was the only one on the entry form, and she ended up getting Best Of Show. She was pretty excited about that,” says Dave.  

“She really never knew it was going to be “her car” until the end of the project. She’s so good about letting me spend a lot of time in the garage, and I’m really thankful for that. I decided I’d let her have the car until it got sold. All my things are kind of for sale,” laughs Dave.

“With the Chevy ll, we just want to drive it and show it. It was built to be more of a driver than the Malibu. It’s more of a kick around car.”

“We have a lot of fun and drive the cars pretty hard. Carrie’s car is a little bit hotter than my car actually. It’s got a Stroker in it also and can go pretty quick. We don’t have many miles on it so we still need to be easy on it and break it in. We just enjoy getting in, driving them and enjoying the scenery.”

“I’ve lived here [in the Hills] since 2001, and it was pretty soon afterwards that I got introduced to Kool Deadwood Nites. I think it’s a pretty awesome event. I’ve never been to another show like it. It’s pretty neat when you drive down the street and all you see is hotrods. There are no two cars the same. I love seeing how everyone adds their own spice to their car.”

“Usually we take in a few of the bands. Many of our friends come up from Colorado, and we do the car show and the judging and all that, then we take a drive up into the Needles. Our favorite loops are probably Spearfish Canyon and Needles Highway. I would like to thank my wife for putting up with me being in the garage most of the time, rather than in the house. She never knows how projects are going to look until the end. Yet she’s patient with me and loves to see how they turn out. The paint flies and things come together and her eyes kind of spark up,” says Dave.

**Special thanks to Chris Yushta with FOTOmotive for the excellent pictures of the Malibu and the Chevy II. He does an outstanding job with his car photography, and we are thrilled to include his photos in this article. Enjoy more of his excellent photography at
Rockin’ Out on Main Street
This year’s concert series is proving to be one of the strongest line-ups in Kool Deadwood Nites history. A thrilling mix of local, regional, and nationally known bands will entertain crowds of tens of thousands over a period of three days. Throw your dancing shoes in the car; it’s time to rock out on Main Street!

The Roselles Brothers Band
The Roselles Brothers Band got its start in the late 1950’s in Lead, South Dakota. The band consists of brothers Les, Gary, Stacey, Steve, and Mark. Their musician father was an important influence on the boys’ decision to play multiple instruments. The band has sung throughout a seven state area, playing rock & roll, country, oldies, and even some comedy. The band has been involved in music for fifty plus years and still enjoys doing benefit performances and community events like Kool Deadwood Nites.

Danny and the Juniors
Danny & The Juniors (individually Frank Maffei, Danny Rapp, Joe Terranova and Dave White) began singing together in the early 1950’s in Philadelphia. It was there they heard the first stirrings of a new music soon to become known as Rock ‘n Roll (Danny & the Juniors, 2010).

“At that time, record companies were searching frantically for young people who could perform the new music. It wasn’t very long before they discovered the group, re-named them Danny & the Juniors and recorded them singing one of their own original songs called “At The Hop” (Danny & the Juniors, 2010).

The song became a hit on five continents, reaching #1 on the Pop, Country and Rhythm and Blues charts. It stands today as the twenty-third all-time most popular record according to Billboard Magazine’s list of number one hits. The group followed up their early success with another hit, “Rock And Roll Is Here To Stay,” which became an anthem of the era. Dance classics “Twistin’ USA” and “Pony Express” were released soon afterward.  

With the success of “At The Hop,” Danny And the Juniors began touring with the other early legends and founders of American Rock ‘n Roll including: Fats Domino, Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis and the Platters in the Alan Freed Big Beat Show. They’ve traveled millions of miles and entertained millions of people in all fifty states, Canada, Europe, South America and Asia. Now, in their fifth decade as performers, the group still appears at a multitude of venues including conventions, theatres, clubs, casinos, fairs and festivals (Danny & the Juniors, 2010).

The Kid and Nic Show
“When Nicole (Nic) and Kirk (Kid) Tracy met, they had no idea that their partnership would soon include leading a band together.  Nicole was a busy actor who performed Shakespeare, Neil Simon, various musicals, and played a character on the television series Beverly Hills 90210.  Kirk was a working saxophonist who played live with The Shirelles, The Ink Spots, Dave Wakeling (The English Beat and General Public), and recorded the Epic Records debut release of the ska group Save Ferris.  Once they met everything changed” (The Kid and Nic Show, 2014).

Since the formation of this husband and wife led five piece band in 1997, The Kid and Nic Show has performed regularly all over the country; from the House of Blues stages in Hollywood and Anaheim to clubs, casinos, theaters, festivals and special events across the country.  Past tours have taken the show to over sixteen states.  The Kid and Nic Show has been featured on The Discovery Channel, The Food Networks “Bobby Flay’s Food Nation,” as well as morning news shows in Minnesota, South Dakota, Nevada and Arizona. Kid and Nic take their audiences on a trip across the landscape of American music and comedy for a show that provides a lot of laughs, great danceable music and a genuine feeling of joy. (The Kid and Nic Show, 2014).

Gary Puckett and the Union Gap
Gary Puckett and the Union Gap were one of the most successful musical groups of the sixties. Gary’s distinct voice garnered six consecutive gold records and top ten Billboard hits with the following titles: “Young girl,” “Woman Woman,” “Lady Willpower,” “Over You,” “This Girl Is A Woman Now,” “Keep The Customer Satisfied,” “Don’t Give In To Him,” and “Home” (Gary Puckett Music, 2001).

In 1974, “Young Girl” was reissued in England where it received a silver record award for attaining a top five position on the pop charts, several years after its initial release. Puckett has performed on more than thirty network television shows and prime time specials during his career, including a performance for the President and Prince Charles at the White House (Gary Puckett Music, 2001).

DD & the Fayrohs
“Beginning in 1983, DD & the Fayrohs reached near legendary status in Western South Dakota and the surrounding states. That initial groundswell of support produced standing room only concerts that continued through the eighties, nineties and into the new millennium. As the opener for The Beach Boys’ sold out concert at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in 1985, the band established a solid reputation as the first-choice opener for many major “oldies rock” shows in the area. The band played car shows, fairs, conventions, public dances, rallies, bars and casinos all over the region for the next two decades. After twenty-seven years as a band, DD & the Fayrohs still perform on limited basis around Western South Dakota. DD & the Fayrohs have been the opening band for the Kool Deadwood Nites shows since the inception of the concert series in 1999 (DD & the Fayrohs, 2014).

Starship featuring Mickey Thomas
“While the band’s history goes back to the sixties, the incarnation of still performing these hits today was started in 1981 when Mickey Thomas joined Paul Kantner and Grace Slick to form Jefferson Starship. Mickey’s voice had become legendary after recording ‘Fooled Around and Fell in Love’ with the Elvin Bishop Band, and he was planning to pursue a solo career. But Jefferson Starship quickly proved to be the right decision when they recorded their first hit, “Jane,” almost immediately after getting together.  

Paul Kantner left in 1984, inspiring Mickey and Grace to change the band’s name to just Starship. In 1985, Starship released the album that would come to define the eighties, ‘Knee Deep in the Hoopla.’ Featuring two number one hits – ‘We Built this City’ and ‘Sara’ – the album reached number seven on Billboard and went platinum. Starship followed-up their initial success with another number one single, ‘Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now,’ featured on the soundtrack for Mannequin. In 1988, Grace Slick left the band and Starship was temporarily disbanded. Mickey Thomas took the reins in 1992 and has been actively touring since that time” (Starship, 2012). TMM

• Danny and the Juniors (2014). Found at:
• DD & the Fayroh’s (2014). DD & the Fayroh’s Facebook Page. Found at:
• Gary Puckett (2001). The Official Gary Puckett Website. Found at:
• South Dakota Rock n’ Roll Music Association (2013). The Roselles Brothers Band. Found at:    http://southdakotarockandrollmusic
• Starship Control (2012). Starship Control Featuring Mickey Thomas. Found at:
• The Kid and Nic Show (2014). Bio/ Song List. Found at:








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