GFP News - May 30, 2013

  • File Error Sends Wrong License Drawing Message
  • Upcoming SD State Park Programs Provide Family Recreation and Education
  • State Parks Offers Summer Nature Camps for Kids
  • Gov. Daugaard Proclaims June As Great Outdoors Month

File Error Sends Wrong License Drawing Message

PIERRE, S.D. - Approximately 2,000 applicants for a South Dakota bighorn sheep hunting license were incorrectly notified that they had drawn a license.

An incorrect computer file was downloaded resulting in license applicants who provided an e-mail address being notified that they had been drawn for a 2013 Bighorn Sheep license. Before the error was discovered, e-mails were already in the process of being sent.

The error was detected about half-way through the notification process and within 30 minutes a corrected e-mail was sent notifying applicants that they had been unsuccessful.

There were no errors in the draw process itself and there is no need for a re-drawing. Two licenses were issued, and they will be contacted by phone confirming their success in the drawing. No unsuccessful applicant was charged the actual license fee.

"We know the high regard that hunters hold for these licenses, and we apologize for the erroneous notification that was sent," Shon Eide, license office supervisor for the Game, Fish and Parks Department said.

"At the same time, we want all applicants to know that this was not a security breach within the license system," Eide added. "An incorrect file was downloaded as part of the message process within the secure system. All personal information is safe."

Eide said all protocols for e-mail notifications will be examined to safeguard against future errors. Anyone with questions or in need of further assistance may contact the GFP call center at 605.223.7660.


Upcoming SD State Park Programs Provide Family Recreation and Education

PIERRE, S.D. -- Educational and recreational programming in South Dakota's state parks is increasing as the summer season begins.

On June 8, several parks will offer programs allowing visitors to join guided hikes, fish or just enjoy a day of family fun. Among those activities:

  • Fort Sisseton Historical Festival, Fort Sisseton Historic State Park, June 7-9. The West is alive and well at Fort Sisseton during this annual June celebration. Observe cavalry, artillery and infantry demonstrations. The festival includes continuous living history demonstrations, musical entertainment and food booths. Visit the Rendezvous Camp or watch arena events. Kids 11 and younger get in free. Camping available. Info: 605-448-5474
  • Basic Birding, Lake Poinsett Recreation Area near Arlington, 9 a.m. CDT. Learn about birds of the area while hiking the park's trails. A limited supply of binoculars will be available. Hikers are encouraged to bring their own. Info: 605-983-5085
  • Amazing Family Race, Lake Vermillion Recreation Area near Canistota, 10 a.m. CDT. Bring your family to join the Amazing Family Race. Teams must include at least one child and one adult. All ages are welcome. Teams will race though the park solving puzzles, completing tasks and finding clues. The top three teams will win prizes. Info: 605-296-3643
  • Luce Pioneer Day, Lake Herman State Park near Madison, 10 a.m. -- 3 p.m. CDT. Step back in time with this pioneer event for the entire family. Enjoy pioneer toys, food, a Dutch oven demonstration, hands-on activities and more. Info: 605-256-5003
  • Cast Iron Chef, Pierson Ranch Recreation Area near Yankton, 11 a.m. CDT. Both beginners and experts are invited to learn about Dutch oven cooking. Info: 605-668-2985
  • Parrot Program, Newton Hills State Park near Canton, 11 a.m. CDT. Bring the family and the lawn chairs to campsite 85E and learn about the Ensz family's eight parrots from all over the world. Find out what it is like to live with these friendly birds. Children younger than twelve must be accompanied by an adult. Info: 605-987-2263
  • Family Fun Amazing Race, Newton Hills State Park  near Canton, 2 p.m. CDT. Everyone is welcome to participate in the Family Fun Amazing Race. The race is a foot-only race (strollers and wagons are welcome). There will be six stops on the race, and each stop will have a challenge. The first, second and third place will receive trophies and all participants will receive a prize. Info: 605-987-2663
  • Techno Treasure Hunt Walk in the Park, Oahe Downstream Recreation Area near Fort Pierre, 8 p.m. -- 10 p.m. CDT. Learn more about the fun activity of geocaching and operating a GPS unit. Info: 605-223-7722
  • Nature Hike, Good Earth State Park at Blood Run near Sioux Falls, 9 a.m. CDT. Join the park naturalist on a Nature Hike through the new Good Earth State Park which is within the Blood Run National Historic Landmark. This nature walk will be an intro and exploration of the new state park. Info: 605-987-2263 or Pre-register: 605-362-2777 or
  • Evening History Hike, Good Earth State Park at Blood Run near Sioux Falls, 7:30 p.m. CDT. Learn a few history tips of this culturally rich site where several thousand American Indians settled between the 12th and 17th Centuries, told from the Umonhon (Omaha) tribe perspective. Samples of pottery and tools used in this Indian Village will be available during the hike. Hike will wrap up with stories around campfire and the 3 Sisters Stew! This area may not be accessible to people with some disabilities at this time. Info: 605-987-2263 or Pre-register: 605-362-2777 or

Family fun pioneer day and corn husk dolls at Lake Thompson Recreation Area near Lake Preston was scheduled for June 8, but it has been postponed until June 15. For more information, call 605-847-4893.

There is no cost to participate in any of the programs except the Fort Sisseton Festival. A park entrance license is required at all parks except Good Earth State Park at Blood Run. Participants are encouraged to wear comfortable walking shoes, dress for the weather and use sunscreen and insect repellant.

For more information on activities in the SD state parks, visit , contact the individual park office, or call 605-773-3391.


State Parks Offers Summer Nature Camps for Kids

PIERRE, S.D. -- Three state parks are hosting nature day camps for kids ages 7-12. The camps are a great way for kids to explore the surrounding recreation area and focus on the outdoors.

Kids' fishing will be held at Lake Poinsett Recreation Area near Arlington from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. CDT on Tuesday, June 11 and at Angostura Recreation Area near Hot Springs from 9:30 a.m. to noon MDT on Wednesday, June 12. Call 605-627-5441 to register for the Lake Poinsett camp and 605-745-6996 to register for the Angostura camp.

Kids will learn all about trees at Palisades State Park near Garretson on Thursday, June 13, from 9 to 11 a.m. CDT. Participants will enjoy a hands-on lesson, craft project, hike and games. Call 605-594-3824 for more information or to register.

While the camps are geared for kids ages 7-12, younger children may attend if accompanied by an adult. Kids are reminded to wear clothing appropriate for the weather, and also bring bug spray, drinking water and shoes comfortable for walking. Sandals are not appropriate. No snacks or refreshments will be provided, but kids are welcome to bring their own. There is no fee for the camp; however a park entrance license is required.

For a complete list of state park events, visit South Dakota state parks on the web at


Gov. Daugaard Proclaims June As Great Outdoors Month

PIERRE, S.D.-- Gov. Dennis Daugaard has joined with states nationwide to proclaim June as Great Outdoors Month.

In the proclamation Gov. Daugaard states that activities like biking, swimming, hiking, paddling, fishing, hunting, camping and boating help us enjoy the physical and mental benefits of outdoor recreation.

Many opportunities for outdoor activities are provided by the South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks in their efforts to expand and enhance state parks, protect our wildlife heritage and introduce youngsters to the wonders of the outdoors.

Several notable outdoor recreation opportunities will take place in June, including the following events:

  • National Trails Day, June 1 -- A day set aside to celebrate America's magnificent trail systems and their countless supporters and volunteers. Several state parks will be hosting trail-related events that day. Info: or
  • National Fishing and Boating Week, June 1-9 -- A national celebration of fishing and boating. National Fishing and Boating Week is the perfect reason to get out on the water and experience the joys of boating and fishing. Info:
  • Great American Backyard Campout, June 22 -- An opportunity for everyone to re-live -- or to experience for the first time -- how much fun it is to spend a night sleeping under the stars and enjoying the sounds of nature. The Great American Backyard Campout is a national event that encourages individuals, youth, friends and families to camp out together for one night. Info:
  • Outdoor Expo, June 8-9 -- The Sixth Annual South Dakota Outdoor Expo will be held at the State Fairgrounds in Huron. The Expo features hands-on activities aimed at introducing families to the many possibilities for recreation in South Dakota's outdoors. Events include fishing, shooting, gold panning, educational programs, activities for small children and more. A joint effort by businesses, outdoor organizations and government agencies present programming. There is no entry or activity fee for taking part in the Expo. Info: 605-353-7340
  • Luce Pioneer Day, June 8 -- Lake Herman State Park near Madison. The event celebrates the original homesteading pioneers with family activities, entertainment, vendors and historical demonstrations. Info: 605-256-5003

In addition, across the state a number of outdoor programs will be held in state parks throughout June, including bird walks, outdoor cooking demonstrations, hikes, fishing derbies and nature programs. For a list of upcoming events, visit