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GFP News - May 28, 2015


Fort Sisseton Historic Festival Returns June 5-7

PIERRE, S.D. -- The oldest standing fort in South Dakota is once again bringing history to life. Fort Sisseton's annual festival will take place June 5-7. The festival boasts over 15,000 visitors on average.

The exhibit dedication of the last U.S. flag to fly over Fort Sisseton will take place Saturday at 12:15 p.m. The thirty-eight star flag was recently discovered in storage and has been painstakingly restored. Lt. Gov. Matt Michels and GFP Secretary Kelly Hepler will speak at the dedication.

Highlights of this year's festival include a wagon train, Civil War Songs, art exhibits, blacksmith demonstrations, chuck wagons, Black Powder shoots, Cavalry Drills and more. A full schedule of events is available at

Camping is available at the fort for the weekend. Reservations are suggested but not required. To reserve your spot, visit or call 1.800.710.2267.

Admission is $5 per person. Kids 12 and under get in free of charge.

For more information, call 605.448.5474 or go online to


Labor Day Camping Reservations in State Parks Open Soon

PIERRE, S.D. -- Whether gardens, vacations or camping trips, it's time to plan! This weekend, South Dakota State Parks are opening up camping reservations for Labor Day weekend.

Reservations for a Friday, Sept. 4, arrival open on June 6 at 7 a.m. CT.  As one of the most popular camping weekends of the year, spots fill up quickly.

To reserve your spot, visit or call 800-710-2267. Reservations open at 7 a.m. CT 90 days prior to arrival, both online and through the call center. Reservations can be made 24 hours a day.

Camping fees are paid at the time a reservation is made, and a park entrance license is required in addition to camping fees.
Custer State Park is currently accepting reservations for all campsites. Group lodges at South Dakota state parks statewide are also accepting reservations at this time.

For more detailed information on making reservations or to view the 90-day window calendar, visit or contact the Division of Parks and Recreation at 605-773-3391 or email


Gov. Daugaard Proclaims June as "Great Outdoors Month"

PIERRE, S.D. -- Gov. Dennis Daugaard has proclaimed June as "Great Outdoors Month" in South Dakota joining with many states across the nation to celebrate the nature and resources of their states.

In the proclamation, Gov. Daugaard noted South Dakota's abundance of natural resources not only provides entertainment and recreation opportunities, but also drives our economy. This celebration of the Great Outdoors is designed to promote safe and healthy fun and a connection to nature.

Game, Fish and Parks is providing opportunities to connect with nature through events, hikes and programs in their continued effort to protect, enhance and care for our state parks and help others do the same.

Notable events taking place throughout Great Outdoors Month include:

Parks across the state will hold events throughout June such as hikes, day camps, archery and disc-golf demonstrations, kids' fishing derbies, educational nature programs and environmental events.

For a full list of events, go online to


State Parks Host Hikes, Events on National Trails Day

PIERRE, S.D. -- As parks and individuals across the nation celebrate National Trails Day, South Dakota State Parks are joining in with plenty of events, hikes and programs to choose from!

American Hiking Society's National Trails Day celebrates hiking and trails across the U.S.

Friday, June 5

Saturday, June 6

All events are free with a park entrance license. For more information on activities in South Dakota State Parks, visit, contact the individual park office or call 605-773-3391.


Mickelson Trail Hosts Trolley on the Trail Events

PIERRE, S.D. -- South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks will host this year’s first Trolley on the Trail event June 2. The event uses a trolley to give people with impaired mobility the opportunity to enjoy the beauties of South Dakota's George S. Mickelson Trail.

The trolley leaves the Deadwood Trailhead at 1 p.m. MDT and tours the Mickelson Trail from Englewood to Rochford. To reserve a spot on the tour, call 605.578.1401.

"Trolley rides are an excellent way for people with physical limitations to get out and experience the Mickelson Trail," said Dana Garry-Reiprich, park manager. "Everyone has a wonderful time and learns a little about the trail."

Reservations are required. Each person reserving a space on the trolley will be required to have a handicapped parking permit. One assistant is allowed to accompany the person, if needed. The trolley has space available for up to two people who use wheelchairs.  

Trolley on the Trail events will be held 5 times throughout the summer and early fall. Upcoming dates include July 7 and 15 and Sept. 1 and 9.

The trolley rides are a combined effort of the Hill City and Deadwood Chambers of Commerce, Neighborhood Housing, South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Department and the City of Deadwood.

For more information, go online to or call 605.578.3896.


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