Half of South Dakota’s governors now have monuments as part of the Trail of Governors initiative.

The foundation, which erects statues of former governors near the state Capitol, is meant to educate tourists about the state’s history through art.

Organizers say the Trail of Governors concept is the only one like it in the country. The statues of Governor’s Warren Green, Nils Boe, and Mike Rounds are set to be placed in various locations in the town of Pierre.

Kenzie Wagner / SDPB

The economy of South Dakota is flat-lining or looking up, depending on which expert you talk to.

Two business leaders in Rapid City spoke at the Black Hills Forum and Press Club on Friday to discuss the ups and downs of South Dakota’s economy, including what lies ahead.


Ben Snow is with Rushmore Region, the group promotes economic development. He says South Dakota is protected from recessions more so than other places in the U.S.

SD Honors Native Literature Month

5 hours ago
Lily Mendoza

June is Indigenous Book Club Month.

It’s part of an effort to promote Native Literature throughout the U.S. and Canada. A proclamation by Rapid City Mayor Steve Allender to honor the month in South Dakota coincides with the anniversary of the Battle of Greasy Grass also known as the Battle of the Little Big Horn.

Lily Mendoza is the owner of Word Carrier Trading Post, a bookstore in Rapid City.

New Law Requires Gates For Paddlers

6 hours ago
Big Sioux, Kayaking, Water
Erin Mairose

Navigable streams and rivers in South Dakota used for kayaking, canoeing, and snowmobiling are considered public highways. But landowners with livestock often put fences across the water. The fences can pose major safety hazards to those paddling or traveling downstream.  To allow access through fenced off portions of streams, a law going into effect July 1st compiles a list of streams requiring gates


6 hours ago

The young players in Mipso bring so many influences into the mix that this is not your average string band.  Modern pop sounds are merged with traditional bluegrass and amazing harmonies.  The resulting textures are so attractive that Mipso's second album, "Old Time Reverie," debuted at #1 on the Billboard Bluegrass chart last year.  Formed in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Mipso is Jacob Sharp, Joseph Terrell, Wood Robinson and Libby Rodenbough.  They played the Matthews Opera House in Spearfish in April.


The five-year walleye tagging project, which is in its final year, focuses on the Missouri River from the Oahe Dam near Pierre, South Dakota, north to the Garrison Dame near Riverdale, North Dakota. Researchers have tagged 26,132 fish in the last three years. Researchers hope to understand the basic science of angler harvest and how food sources and flooding impact the walleye population. We talk with researcher Brian Graeb and his doctoral student Eli Felts.

SAB Biotherapeutics, Inc.

Eddie Sullivan is the President, CEO and Co-Founder of SAB Biotherapeutics, Inc. based in Sioux Falls. The biopharmaceutical company leads the science and manufacturing of polyclonal antibody therapies. Eddie Sullivan has been named chair of the food and agriculture section governing board for the Biotechnology Innovation Organization or Bio. It’s the industry’s largest international trade association.


Dr. Ranjit Koodali, USD Chemistry Professor and now Dean of the USD Graduate School joins us to discuss the latest in research around the country. Dr. K is the Public Relations Chair of the Sioux Valley Section of the American Chemical Society. He provides regular collection of science articles and is going to join Innovation once a month to talk about what’s happening around the country. Today Dr. K. teaches us about using biosynthesized ZnO nanoparticles and soil fungi.

State of South Dakota

Governor Dennis Daugaard has proclaimed Monday, June 27, as "Post-Traumatic Stress Injury Awareness Day.”  He wants South Dakota residents to consider causes and treatments of injuries and conditions that come after stressful events. 

Post-Traumatic Stress Injuries are more commonly known as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders.  While such conditions can happen to anyone who has gone through a difficult period, Veterans Administration psychologist, Doctor Kyle Lythgoe, says many military members have trouble asking for outside help, even if they really need it.

SD Fertilizer Runoff And The Gulf Dead Zone

10 hours ago

Oceanographers fear that this year the Gulf of Mexico could see its largest dead zone ever recorded. 

Researchers attribute the massive annual die off of fish around the Mississippi delta to fertilizer runoff from agriculture in the Great Plains.

Officials in South Dakota say they recognize this problem and are taking action.

Brexit’s Impact On South Dakota

11 hours ago

Thursday, a public referendum ended Britain’s participation in the European Union. Officials are giving their thoughts on if the move will affect the global market.

South Dakota officials say the market has dipped sharply in other countries. However, they say that is not true for the United States. Matt Clark is the State Investment Officer. He says the US market declined about 2%, and that happens on any given week.

Wikipedia File Photo

Lakota youth are taking part in the 500-Mile Sacred Hoop Run around the Black Hills this week. The annual event aims to reconnect the youth with their culture, land and history. We caught up with runners on a windy road in Wyoming and filed this report.

Upcoming Amateur Radio Field Day

20 hours ago

This weekend ham radio operators celebrate the National Park Service.

This year’s Amateur Radio Field Day features science and national parks. 

Amateur or ham radio operators started the Amateur Radio Field Day in 1933.  The annual public exercise shows operators’ skills.  Corey Klumper is with the Unreal Radio Club in Marshall Minnesota. He says most Field Days are hosted by local clubs.

A South Dakota candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives is calling on her opponent to convince Republicans in the state house to vote on expanding Medicaid. Paula Hawks’ call comes just twenty four hours after South Dakota’s governor called off a special session.


U.S. House Candidate Paula Hawks says Medicaid expansion in South Dakota would help fund Indian Health Service operations.

Rapid City Chamber of Commerce & Community Conversations

The Rapid City Chamber of Commerce met Thursday morning to reveal a new initiative to promote racial equality in the workplace. It’s a pledge, called “In the Spirit of Mitákuye Oyás’in or We Are All Related” and comes after a yearlong process of identifying social issues in the city.

The pledge to end discrimination in Rapid City businesses came after the Chamber was approached by Community Conversations, an organization formed to address racial inequality.

Western South Dakota In Drought

Jun 23, 2016

Western South Dakota is sliding into a drought. The U.S. Drought Monitor shows several counties are experiencing moderate to severe drought. Officials say the drought is hitting Lawrence, Pennington and Meade counties the hardest.

Melissa Smith is a hydrologist with the Rapid City National Weather Service. She says areas around the Black Hills are in real need of precipitation.

Hank Harris and Jeff Severson join Dakota Midday for live music and musings on everything from the influence of nature to the nature of South Dakota music. They perform together Friday, June 24th at 7:30 p.m. (Mountain Time) a the Dahl Arts Center in Rapid City.

Artist bios:

Mary McCorkle is president of the South Dakota Education Association. She is on her way to the National Education Association (NEA) Annual Meeting and Representative Assembly. McCorkle discusses the implementation of Every Student Succeeds, education funding, and the powerful voting bloc of NEA members in national elections.

Sean Williams is the co-founder of the comics publishing company Comicker LLC. He's the New York Times best selling writer of “Fairest: The Return of the Maharaja” for Vertigo; “The Vampire Diaries” and “Sensation Comics” for DC Comics and “Artful Daggers” for Monkeybrain Comics and IDW Publishing. He joins Dakota Midday to talk about the comic book industry prior to his afternoon appearance at the Caille Branch library in Sioux Falls Thursday.

As we approach the anniversary of the Battle of Greasy Grass/Battle of Little Bighorn scholar Donovin Sprague will discuss the battle from the perspective of a Lakota and Cheyenne family during a Learning Forum at the Journey Museum at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 25th.

He joins Dakota Midday to talk about new scholarship that adds to the cultural understanding of what happened 140 years ago this week.

Sprague is an adjunct instructor in American Indian Studies at Black Hills State University. He is a tribal archivist, historic tour guide, and musician.

SDDA To Recycle Pesticide Containers

Jun 23, 2016

The South Dakota Department of Agriculture is collecting pesticide containers this summer. Anyone with empty plastic pesticide containers can bring them to the nearest collection location for recycling. Amanda Bachmann (BOCK-man) is a pesticide specialist at South Dakota State University.  She says the Department of Agriculture has offered this program since 1993 and has become one of its most popular services. Bachmann says many waste management companies will not accept pesticide containers, so recycling them prevents improper disposal.

Some researchers say the West River economy could be headed for trouble. An economist is sharing his thoughts at an upcoming talk in Rapid City.

Dead End For Deep Hole In Spink County

Jun 22, 2016

Organizers of a project to test rocks deep underground in Spink County say they won’t pursue the plan any further. Researchers wanted to find out if it’s possible to drill a hole deep and straight enough to store nuclear waste inside. Proponents say nuclear waste isn’t involved in the project. Opponents worry about what will happen after the hole is dug.

Governor Dennis Daugaard says he won’t call a special session of the state legislature to vote on Medicaid expansion.  

Daugaard says he has a plan that would not cost the state additional money, and guarantees the federal government will pay for Native American healthcare.

Daugaard says several legislators requested more time to study his plan for Medicaid expansion. His plan would expand coverage to 50,000 South Dakotans between the ages of 18 and 65.  

Representative Jim Bolin says there wasn’t enough support in the House to approve the governor’s plan.

Courtesy Bush Foundation

During her career Pam Moret spent a lot of time as a leader. Before she retired Moret served as President and CEO brightpeak financial and Senior Vice President Strategic Development at Thrivent Financial.

City of Sturgis

Snapchat is coming to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally again this year.

The social media app is a messaging platform that lets users send time sensitive photos and videos to one another. It’s mostly used by millennials, but the Sturgis Rally is mostly attended by baby boomers.


  You are going to die, say Don and Lindsay Frankenfeld. The question is, what are you going to do about it?

The father-daughter pair have prepared a TEDx talk that explores questions of life, death, and leaving loved ones behind. They join Dakota Midday  for a conversation about denial and faith, bucket lists and love.

Don Frankenfeld is a forensic economist. He’s a former South Dakota state senator and was named a Bush Leadership Fellow in 1987. Lindsay Frankenfeld is startup community advocate, a teacher, and a former reporter for South Dakota Public Broadcasting.

  How does a Communist country integrate capitalistic ideals into an ancient Confucian culture? USD law professor Thomas Horton joins Midday to discuss China and the implementation of its anti-monopoly laws. Horton highlights the influence of Western innovation, the historic relationships that impact China's trade philosophies, and how the intersection of socialism and capitalism has surfaced in the 2016 U.S. Presidential election.

  The Dakota Political Junkies are a rotating panel of the most experienced and insightful political reporters and editors in the state. Seth Tupper looks at the town of Cottonwood (population: 12) as it survives a dissolution vote.

Public Vote For New Pierre Event Center

Jun 22, 2016

Pierre residents will vote in November whether to build a new recreation and event center. If built, the center would open in early 2019 and seat 4,000 people. City leaders previously tore down its City Auditorium due to structural problems. That structure had been condemned.

Pierre Mayor Laurie Gill says the $14.5 million dollar project is designed to handle different athletics and concerts requiring flat floor space. She sees this significant investment benefiting area residents of all ages.