Dakota Digest

A new SDPB Podcast

A podcast delivering the best SDPB programming.

Click here for the Dakota Digest archives prior to Sept. 2012. Current archives are available by scrolling down.

Dakota Digest for January 29, 2016

Jan 29, 2016

On this week's edition of Dakota Digest, the state legislature has concluded its work for the month of January. This week the top topics were Transgender students and bathrooms in public schools, education, medicaid expansion, and daylight savings time.

Dakota Digest for January 22, 2016

Jan 22, 2016

On this week's episode of Dakota Digest, the state legislative session continues with Week 2. SDPB's Kealey Bultena continues to report on the topic of education, and what is being discussed regarding the pay of teachers. Also, SDPB's Jim Kent attends an Eagle Feather Ceremony on the Pine Ridge Reservation.

Dakota Digest for January 15, 2016

Jan 15, 2016
Mitchell Republic

The 2016 Legislative Session began this week with Governor Dennis Daugaard's annual State-of-the-State Address on Tuesday. Also this week, the State of Judiciary address and the State of Tribes address. Legendary coach and South Dakota Sports Hall of Famer Gary Munsen passed away this week.

Dakota Digest for January 8, 2016

Jan 10, 2016

On this week's edition of Dakota Digest, state lawmakers are preparing for the 2016 Legislative Session in Pierre, SD. Governor Dennis Daugaard will give his annual State-of-the-State Address on Tuesday Jan. 12, which will kick-off the session. 

Dakota Digest for December 31, 2015

Dec 31, 2015

On this week's edition of Dakota Digest, the 116th annual bird count is underway throughout the country and South Dakota. Also, doctors are encouraging South Dakotans to get a flu shot or the flu mist. With the year 2016 on the horizon, SDPB's Nate Wek gives the Top-10 Movies of 2015. 

Dakota Digest for December 18, 2015

Dec 21, 2015

On this week's edition of Dakota Digest, state leaders are talking weekly with federal officials as they work on a change that could prompt Medicaid expansion in South Dakota. Also, eastern South Dakota is continually getting wetter, and a group of 7th and 8th graders celebrate Human Rights Day. All these stories and more on this week's episode of Dakota Digest.

Dakota Digest for December 11, 2015

Dec 13, 2015

On this week's edition of Dakota Digest, Governor Dennis Daugaard gave his annual Budget Address at the state capital in Pierre. Also, a constitutional amendment to establish non-partisan elections in South Dakota could be on the ballot in 2016.   

Dakota Digest for December 4, 2015

Dec 4, 2015

On this week's edition of Dakota Digest, Senator John Thune wants part of the Affordable Care Act repealed, and the deadline approaches for Medicare Part D. Also, a group of volunteers in Rapid City is dressing up as animated characters to help bring happiness to kids. All of this and more on this week's Dakota Digest.

Dakota Digest for November 20, 2015

Nov 21, 2015

On this week's edition of Dakota Digest, Jewel Cave surpasses 180 miles long, lawmakers discuss education, and a former middle school teacher gets 25 years in prison for child pornography.

Dakota Digest for November 6, 2015

Nov 6, 2015

On this week’s edition of the Dakota Digest podcast, President Barack Obama has rejected a permit that would allow the Keystone Pipeline to cross the Canadian Border. Also on this week’s episode, the high school football semi-final round is this weekend and the US House of Representatives passed a transportation bill.

Dakota Digest for October 30, 2015

Oct 30, 2015


On this week’s edition of Dakota Digest, the Blue Ribbon Task Force held it's final meeting this week, the Board of Regents is considering the sale of alcohol during university events, and Pine Ridge has a new multi-purpose business on wheels.

Be sure to follow South Dakota Public Broadcasting on social media by following our accounts on twitter: @SoDakPB, @SDPBNews, and @SDPBSports

Dakota Digest for October 23, 2015

Oct 23, 2015

On this week’s edition of Dakota Digest, South Dakota is set to lose its participation in the EB-5 program, and Senator Rounds won’t lobby to keep it. Also this week, Senator Thune hopes President Obama has a change of heart with the National Defense Authorization Act, and a Sioux Falls Roosevelt teacher has won a national award.

Be sure to follow South Dakota Public Broadcasting on social media by following our accounts on twitter: @SoDakPB, @SDPBNews, and @SDPBSports

Dakota Digest for October 16, 2015

Oct 16, 2015
Black Hills State University

On this week's edition of Dakota Digest, Native Americans Day was this week, a TSA leader toured the Sioux Falls airport, and a transgender author gives a presentation in Rapid City. For more radio news and other South Dakota Public Broadcasting programming, visit sdpb.org.

Follow our twitter accounts: @SoDakPB, @SDPBNews, @SDPBSports, and @SDPB

Dakota Digest for October 9, 2015

Oct 9, 2015
Jennifer Jones / SDPB

On this week's edition of Dakota Digest, former South Dakota Governor Walter Dale Miller's funeral and US Senator Mike Rounds comments on the debt ceiling lead headlines. We also take a look into a Doctor's encouraging screenings to prevent colon cancer, and a Cherokee artist is donating his work to Black Hills State University. For more weekly stories and other South Dakota Public Broadcasting programming, visit sdpb.org.

Follow our twitter accounts: @SoDakPB, @SDPBNews, @SDPBSports, and @SDPB

Dakota Digest for October 2, 2015

Oct 2, 2015
Kealey Bultena / SDPB

On this week's edition of Dakota Digest, the Harrisburg School shooting and the death of former South Dakota Governor Walter Dale Miller are the headlines. Be sure to visit our website, sdpb.org for complete coverage and programing from South Dakota Public Broadcasting.

Follow our twitter accounts: @SoDakPB, @SDPBNews, @SDPBSports, and @SDPB

Dakota Digest for September 25, 2015

Sep 25, 2015

This week’s edition of Dakota Digest features Kealey Bultena reporting on the Platte murder-suicide investigation, Charles Michael Ray examining improved efforts for tribal state relations, Jennifer Jones discusses a 90-year old Granite Quarry near Milbank, and the Pope visits the United States.

All of this and more on this week’s edition of Dakota Digest.

Black Hills Symphony Orchestra Turns 80

Dec 24, 2014
Courtesy Black Hills Symphony Orchestra

It’s Christmas Eve. Time for last-minute shopping, final gift-wrapping and 11th-hour preparations for celebrations that lie ahead. Through it all, we hear music – at home, at work, in shopping malls and even on the streets. And though popular standards by crooners from Frank Sinatra to Harry Connick may fill the air, traditional songs can also be heard – frequently played by symphony orchestras.

Elders Take Stand Against Dog Roundups

Dec 4, 2014
Photo by Jim Kent

As the Oglala Sioux Tribe announced plans to begin rounding up dogs on November 29, elders across the Pine Ridge Reservation began gathering to discuss how to counter what they felt was a knee-jerk reaction by tribal leadership to the recent death of 8-year old Jayla Rodriguez.

Although everyone seems to agree that there’s an overpopulation of dogs on Pine Ridge…arbitrarily choosing to shoot any dog that’s not confined isn’t the traditional Lakota way.

Nagase Completes Badlands Tapestry Garden

Nov 7, 2014
Photo by Masayuki Nagase

Masayuki Nagase has completed the second year of work on his Passage of Wind and Water sculpture at Rapid City’s Main Street Square. The finished art piece will reflect the archeological, geological and cultural history of the Badlands and the Black Hills. We visited with the artist to discuss what he’s accomplished on the 5-year project so far, and what’s on the agenda for 2015.

Nagase Sculpture Inspires Community Artists

Nov 4, 2014
Courtesy Kenny Putnam

  The Passage of Wind and Water sculpture has been the focal point of Rapid City’s Main Street Square for the past two years. But the country’s largest privately-funded public art project has also had an impact on other areas – from schools, to cultural bridge-building, to local businesses and social networking. We visit the opening of an exhibit at Prairie Edge Trading Company and Galleries to see how the Passage of Wind and Water sculpture is also impacting the area's art community. 

Courtesy Badlands National Park - Rikk Flohr

As South Dakota marks 125 years of statehood, SDPB is featuring stories that rediscover our identity and heritage through the people, places, and ideas that make this state unique. Although there are many arid areas across the country that bear the name, there’s only one “Badlands” National Park – and it’s located in South Dakota. We visited this former site of an ancient sea to learn more about the area the Lakota have called “Bad Land” for centuries.

Native American Cowboys and Dancers

Oct 15, 2014
Courtesy Clarice Lakota

 A Lakota teen from Rapid City is the first person in the history of the Black Hills Pow Wow to introduce the “Hat and Boot Dance” into the annual event’s huge arena. The dance style pays homage to the long Lakota relationship with the horse along with their link to cowboy hats, chaps, lariats and boots…which traces back more than one-hundred years.

Sittin' Down With Kenny Putnam

Oct 7, 2014
Courtesy Kenny Putnam

 An intimate discussion with local legend and South Dakota Country Music Hall of Fame fiddler Kenny Putnam. Join us as Kenny talks about his initial desire to play the cello, his early years in school orchestras, touring with the Red Willow Band, being part of “country-western guitarist-extraordinaire” Roy Clark’s world-renowned band and his return to South Dakota from a 15-year stint on the road – where Kenny now operates his own design and photo restoration business; when he’s not traveling somewhere across the state to play the fiddle.


Lakota Strategize For Black Hills Return

Sep 29, 2014
Wikipedia file photo

The fight for the return of the Black Hills to the Lakota people may seem like a lost cause to many…but not for those who claim original rights to the land. We visit with Lakota elders and several of their well-known supporters to discuss the decades-old issue and examine plans to take the battle to the White House.

Unity Concert For Return Of Black Hills

Sep 19, 2014
Photo by Jim Kent

Hundreds of people from across the country and around the world gathered on a field near Piedmont recently with one goal in mind…returning the Black Hills to the Lakota people. We attend the 2-day “Unity Concert” and speak with music legends, Native activists, tribal elders and international performers to learn why they’ve joined forces in the decades-old cause.

Courtesy Kenny Putnam

It’s always nice for a musician to receive recognition for their work, whether by applause, a standing ovation or an award. Reaching the point where your ability is so acclaimed you’re chosen to be in a Hall of Fame, however, is a rare honor indeed. But as we discover, the induction of one musician into the South Dakota Country Music Hall of Fame came as no surprise to someone who worked with the man from the U.S. to Moscow. 

South Dakota Photographers Reflect on Their Craft

Aug 19, 2014
Joseph Nicephore Niepce

2014 brings the 175th anniversary of photography, being celebrated with “A Day in South Dakota”.  It’s an opportunity for people to take photos of what living in the state means to them, and send them along as a video archive of the day.  Collecting memories and recording history have obviously moved along as technology has improved photos and made them simple enough to take.  

Photo by Jim Kent

A financial institution on the Pine Ridge Reservation is giving Lakota tribal members the opportunity to conduct banking transactions within close proximity to their homes for the first time in history. The Lakota Federal Credit Union also allows tribal members to not only save money, but to invest in fellow tribal members.

But you can’t save or invest unless you open an account and make deposits.

Replacing Aging Pools

Aug 12, 2014
Heidi Kronaizl

  Diving into a pool is a great way to cool off on a hot and humid summer day. While many towns across the state have aging pools, the process of getting new pools and upkeep isn’t so easy on a small town budget.

The sound may never get old of summer time at the pool. But pools get old. The Vermillion City Pool is almost 50. Because that’s the expected lifespan of any pool, the city is looking to build a new one. Jim Goblirsch is the Director of the Vermillion City Parks and Recreation. He says the current pool has 2-inch wide cracks and leaks about 12,000 gallons of water a day.

Black Hills Burger & Bun Named Best

Aug 8, 2014
Photo by Jim Kent

A restaurant in the Black Hills town of Custer has been named the best place in America to buy burgers by the travel website Trip Advisor. In a country where 40 billion burgers are consumed annually, that’s quite a moniker to live up to. Today we visit “Black Hills Burger and Bun” to find out what patrons think of the eatery’s new status and to do a little taste-testing himself.

Like the greater majority of people in America, I love a good burger. And though I eat a good many of them from my own kitchen…..