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The Knuckle up for sale

March 25, 2019 GMT

STURGIS — For $6.2 million, you could own the Knuckle Saloon and Knuckle Brewing Company in Sturgis.

The bar has been on the real estate market for about a month, but no one has stepped up yet with a viable offer, said Bryan Carter, one of the co-owners of the Knuckle.

“We’ve had some tire kickers, but not really anything. This is a big deal. It might sell, but then again it might not ever sell,” Carter matter-of-factly said.

The Knuckle, 931 First St., covers 45,000 square-feet on one of the busiest corners in town during the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. It is listed with Tom Rau and Dan Martin of Re Max Results of Rapid City.

“We waited to put it on the market, because we wanted to have a meeting with our staff first,” Carter said.

Carter and the other owners are looking to lighten the load. They are busy with a new venture — the 18,000 square-foot Sturgis Brewing Co. in southeast Sturgis that is expected to be finished by next fall.

Owners of the Knuckle started brewing their own beer in 2014. The brews proved so popular that they couldn’t keep up. That’s when the idea of building their own large-scale brewery surfaced.

“In the new building, we will be capable of brewing about 7,000 barrels a year. That’s seven times bigger than what we are right now,” he said.

The brewing equipment will not be sold with the property, Carter said. But the new Sturgis Brewing Co. would be willing to brew for the new owners, he said.

The real estate listing says the Knuckle has been a must see for rally goers for years with two restaurant/bars and an open-air pavilion featuring bands, bull riding and sanctioned fights.

Unlike other rally bars, the Knuckle Saloon and Knuckle Brewing Co. both remain open year-around. They host weddings, Sturgis Mustang Rally, family and class reunions. During the rally, outside vendor space is made available which adds to the property’s profitability.

The owners of the Knuckle had a business appraisal done before putting it on the market.

“We didn’t know what to ask for it. The appraisal came in pretty much where we thought it would,” Carter said.

If the Knuckle doesn’t sell, it would just mean that current owners and managers would have to split their time between the two properties.

“We’ve already made some changes in management. That’s a work in process,” Carter said. “Trying to run them both would be a handful.”

With the 80th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally coming up in 2020, Carter is optimistic that someone will want to buy the Knuckle.

“It’s a great opportunity for somebody. We have some awesome staff. I know they would be in good hands with someone new. It’s been fun, but it’s time for some new blood,” Carter said.

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