Gustavus Adolphus College student Alexa Giebink has written "Phoenix: Rising from Addiction," which is set for a December release.  The book tells the story of the Giebink family dealing with Mary Ann Giebink's addiction to alcohol and drugs and her rise and fall as a successful attorney to prison.  The book was written as a healing process for Alexa who was in high school in Sioux Falls when Mary Ann was in prison.  For more information see Alexa Giebink's website at

Guest host Cara Hetland welcomed the Dakota Political Junkies a day early this week.  Madison Daily Leader publisher Jon Hunter and Sioux Falls Argus Leader reporter/columnist Jonathan Ellis visited about the climate conference in France and whether anything will come out of it that pertains to South Dakotans, the latest refugee news in the state, a busy week for the Secretary of State's office as they peruse signatures for ballot initiatives, news that Black Hills State University will lead GEAR UP restructuring and more.

Chynna Lockett

For many people, the holidays are a time when the family gathers for a festive meal. But for people struggling to afford food, this may not be the case. Feeding South Dakota recently held its 5th annual Turkey Drive to provide families in need with a Thanksgiving meal.

Photo courtesy of Lindsey Riter-Rapp

A state prison inmate convicted of second-degree murder while he was still a juvenile is appealing his case to the South Dakota Supreme Court. Oral arguments, first scheduled to be heard in December, have been continued to Jan. 13.

On the murder conviction, Braiden McCahren was sentenced about a year ago to 25 years, with 15 suspended. If he had been convicted of the same charge prior to 2012, he would have faced a mandatory life sentence without possibility of parole.

Rapid City’s Past Housed In New Historical Collections Room

14 hours ago

From the lives of the Lakota who called the Black Hills home for generations, to the founding of Hay Camp, to the Black Hills Flood, the history of Rapid City is rich and deep--and now history buffs can find it all in one place.

Refugees And Immigrants Bring Diversity To Huron

15 hours ago

Huron has a population of about 13,000. But it contains the diversity you might expect in a larger city. Almost 40 percent of students in the school system were in an English Language Acquisition program at some point.  Many are Karen refugees from Burma and Thailand.


Huron Mayor Paul Aylward says the city went through some tough times. Packing plants shut down, the town lost its university, and the population was declining. Eventually a turkey processing plant opened. To fill the jobs, leaders started recruiting Karen refugees who were living in the Twin Cities.

Public Utilities Commissioners have approved a permit for an oil pipeline built across eastern South Dakota. The pipeline is more than 1,100 miles long and will transport crude oil from the Bakken oil fields in North Dakota to Illinois. Commissioners approved the permit with conditions on a split vote.

The local segment of the Dakota Access Pipeline stretches from the North Dakota border 272 miles across South Dakota to the Iowa state line. It includes one pump station, and the proposed route crosses 13 eastern South Dakota counties.

Orvin Olivier joined guest host Cara Hetland in this week's Images of the Past feature segment.  Olivier discussed the 1935 launch of the Explorer II from the Stratobowl.

Courtesy High Plains Western Heritage Center

The holiday season is upon us. It’s a time when families will sit down for a gathering of generations to share traditional meals, perhaps offer prayers and regale each other with tales of what they’ve experienced since the last time they met. From stories about a toddler’s “firsts” to a teen’s “you won’t believe this” tales of adventure, the goal often becomes a friendly contest of “who can top this?”

Forgotten War Vets To Be Honored In Statewide Ceremony

Nov 30, 2015
SD Department of Veterans Affairs

Veterans of what’s often called the forgotten war are being honored in Pierre in January.   Leaders of the country of South Korea are issuing medals to American veterans who served in the Korean War. In South Dakota hundreds of veterans across the state will receive medals simultaneously in conjunction with a ceremony in the capitol rotunda.


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