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GFP News - June 14, 2016


Capitol Campout and Outdoor University a Big Success

Pierre, S.D. - Gov. Dennis Daugaard and family joined 58 families for campfire songs, treats and camping on the lawn of the state Capitol Building on Friday at the first-ever Capitol Campout.

Families from across the state tent camped under the stars and the shadow of the Capitol dome.  On Saturday, the campers joined nearly 800 others to enjoy South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks’ (GFP) Outdoor University activities.

The Outdoor University included activities such as air rifle shooting, archery, kayaking, canoeing, fishing, campfire cooking and more.  These activities were all free to the public.

"The Capitol Campout is part of National Get Outdoors Month, which challenges governors from across the country to camp with the public at each state’s capitol," said GFP visitor coordinator, Lynn Spomer. "Despite hot temperatures, everyone involved, including Gov. Daugaard and his family, had a lot of fun."

Pierre’s hosting of an Outdoor University was a first, but these events go on every summer at GFP’s Outdoor Campus centers in Rapid City and Sioux Falls.

"The Outdoor University events have something for everyone," said GFP education coordinator, Jason Kool. "Whether you are an outdoor veteran or someone who wants to know more, we can get you started at these events. We have hosted thousands of South Dakotans at our Outdoor Universities. They are very popular and provide a lot of smiles and memories for families."

"This event took a year in planning," Spomer said. "Seeing kids catch their first fish and the smiling families camping in front of the Capitol was the payoff, and it was a big one."

For more information on GFP’s Outdoor University events, visit:


Lake Alvin Re-Opened for Swimming

Pierre, S.D. - Lake Alvin outside of Harrisburg is now re-opened for swimming. The swim beach closed June 3, but new beach water samples taken last week show a healthy level of E. coli in the water. The beach is open and ready for swimmers. The lake remains open for fishing.

Contact Jason Bauman, district park supervisor, at 605.987.2263 with any questions.


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