Black Hills Tesla Rally Inspired By Elon Musk Visit

May 18, 2021

Teslas, the cars known for being electric, are not common in South Dakota.  

But this weekend, a record number of them are converging on a small town in the Black Hills.  

And it’s all because of a chance encounter with Tesla’s CEO. 

Custer is a tourist town near Mount Rushmore. But this weekend’s visitors are not there just for the carved rock. They’re meeting up to celebrate electric cars.  

Custer is hosting its seventh annual Tesla Road Trip Rally. More than 80 Teslas are on their way, which is a record for the event. 

SDPB News: Aug 7

Aug 7, 2020

Drought conditions are settling in the state. How is this affecting South Dakota communities? Plus, what caused of the Mine Draw fire at Custer State Park back in June? All this and more in today’s SDPB News Podcast. Find it on Apple Podcasts or Spotify today. 

News: Jun 20 - 26

Jun 26, 2020

DACA cannot be dismantled, Dicamba cannot be used. Plus, Trump is headed to Mount Rushmore for the 4th of July fireworks show. 


All this and more in this week’s In the Moment news podcast. 

SDPB News: May 27

May 27, 2020

The SDPB News Podcast is where we bring you South Dakota's top news and politics headlines from the past 24 hours.

Each day, SDPB's journalism team works to bring you pertinent news coverage. We then compile those stories into one neatly formatted daily podcast so that you can stay informed. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts or Spotify today.

Images Of The Past: Pleasant Valley

Mar 11, 2020
1881 Courthouse Museum, Custer

In The Moment ... March 9, 2020 Show 769 Hour 2

Southwest of Custer South Dakota you'll find Pleasant Valley. There you will find what we know today as 12-mile Ranch. A fascinating and historic story involves early settlers, the Joseph & Sarah Heumphreus Family. For today's Images of the Past, we invited Gary Enright from the 1881 Courthouse Museum in Custer to join us.

A legislative committee approved a bill Wednesday that would prevent the governor from putting the former STAR Academy juvenile detention center back up for sale. 

In The Moment ... October 10, 2019 Show 677 Hour 2

Custer residents celebrate the Burning Beatle Festival each January, and each year the celebration evolves. This week you can join in a celebration of a different sort in Custer.

Chris Pelczarski and Krystal Hegerfeld join In The Moment for a preview of an October 13 fundraiser at the Custer Beacon.

Grace Family Fellowship

Parents with school-aged children may have a hard time finding affordable ways to keep their kids safe and active during summer break. But a pastor in Custer is helping fill that need in his community with a new day camp.

Pastor Mike Brennan and his wife Monica have a long history of working with kids. They’ve fostered nearly 60 children over the last two decades and started free summer camps around the country through their organization Youth Evangelism Strategies.

1881 Courthouse Museum

In The Moment ... November 14, 2018 Show 460 Hour 2

Images of Native Americans have been on currency for years. Gary Enright is the director of the 1881 Courthouse Museum in Custer. Today he taks about this rich history.

Images Of The Past: Jim Pitts

Oct 1, 2018

In The Moment ... October 1. 2018 Show 433 Hour 2

One of the most productive archaeological sites in North America was inhabited by the Paleo Indians and is located in South Dakota. Two decades ago, Archaeologist Jim Pitts began excavating on this site in western Custer county.

Gary Enright is the director of the 1881 Courthouse Museum in Custer joined In The Moment with an insight on Jim Pitts.

Lee Strubinger

In The Moment ... May 29, 2018 Show 346 Hour 2

Leave the ordinary behind at this year's Black Hills Playhouse Season Warmer and Fundraiser, featuring the Retro All-Stars.

It's a chance for audiences to "warm up" the theater with food and entertainment, music and stories.

The event features Black Hills Playhouse alumni Eric Johnson, Darla Drew, Gordy Pratt, and Dalyce Sellers. Join the audience Saturday, June 2 at 2:00 p.m. and at 7:30 p.m at the Black Hills Playhouse in Custer State Park.

In The Moment ... January 19, 2018 Show 259 Hour 1

This weekend marks the annual Burning of the Beetle in Custer, where residents take out their environmental frustrations on the man-made carcass of an enormous, fireworks-filled bug.

Hank Fridell and Paul Horsted are with Custer's Burning Beetle committee.

STAR Academy Sells For Minimum Bid Of $2.34 Million

Jan 4, 2018

The STAR Academy has a new owner.

The estate sold for a minimum bid at $2.34 million in auction. It was the second time the academy campus went up for auction.

Former Custer mayor and real estate agent Jared Carson, and his business partners, met the minimum bid to purchase the state owned, former juvenile detention center.

The 37-year-old went to high school in Custer and served in the army. Over the next year, Carson and his business partners plan to turn the campus into what he calls a “light manufacturing” center with a low-carbon food print.

In The Moment ... June 26, 2017 Show 122 Hour 2

This weekend marked the 141st anniversary of the The Battle of Greasy Grass, also known as the Battle of Little Bighorn. We begin hour two of In the Moment by putting the battle into context. First, author and Black Hills State University instructor Donovin Sprauge sat down with us last year at this time. He's a family descendant of both Crazy Horse and Chief Hump. He's working on a book about the two men. Donovin Sprague is also an archivist with the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe.

In The Moment ... March 13, 2017 Show 048 Hour 2

As the number of suicides rise in Minnehaha County, we talk with Janet Kittams-Lalley, president of the Helpline Center, about he trends and resources to recognize and support those at risk for self-harm.

On this week's Images of the Past, Gary Enright returns, this time to discuss the lumber industry in the Black Hills and its role alongside mining and tourism to support the Black Hills economy. Gary Enright is director of the 1881 Courthouse Museum in Custer.

Gary Enright, director of the 1881 Courthouse Museum in Custer, joins the program to discuss the Gordon Stockade and how it has been used by miners, soldiers, and (today) tourists.

Lunafest is a national showcase of short films that highlights women filmmakers and women's issues. Peg Ryan is the chair of the Lunafest Custer committee. She joins Midday to discuss the power of a short narrative and the importance of bringingg international film to Custer.

50 Years Of Buffalo, Adrenalin, And Bullwhips

Sep 26, 2015
Rochelle Plocek / Custer State Park

The Custer State Park Buffalo Round Up is 50 years old.   Each year the park corrals its buffalo and sells off some animals to keep the heard from growing too large.   The 50th annual event delighted the huge crowd of spectators as the wranglers on horseback and park personal in vehicles drove the bison across the rolling hills and finally into a large corral.

Weather Delays Vestal Project

May 29, 2015
Chynna Lockett

The Vestal project is an ongoing effort to thin out the Ponderosa Pine tree population surrounding Custer. The project is meant to rid the forests of pine beetles and stop large scale wild fires. Matt Spring is the prescribed fire and fuels management specialist with the Black Hills National Forest. He says the project is nearing an end, but recent weather is causing delays.

Bark Beetle Blues

On Saturday in Custer, a massive, 28-foot likeness of a pine beetle will be set on fire in a ceremonial response to the bug that’s ravaged forests in the Black Hills. This is the second year for the Burning Beetle. The event is part of the Bark Beetle Blues efforts using arts to discuss the pine beetle infestation.

The event begins at 3:30 pm at Custer High School with music and a video of last year’s Burning Beetle. Participants then march to Pageant Hill where the beetle is set on fire. At 6:30 pm, the Bug Crawl takes place in downtown Custer with live music at several venues.

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…..

Historic Meeker Ranch Vandalized

Jul 22, 2014
Jon Crane

The Historic Meeker Ranch nestled in the Black Hills near Custer has been vandalized. Michael Engelhart is a District Archeologist with the Black Hills National Forest. He says the damage came earlier this summer.

"Go-To Person For Custer County History" Dies

Sep 10, 2013

A memorial service took place today for the person known as "go-to person for Custer County history." Jessie Sundstrom was the former publisher of the Custer County Chronicle newspaper. She was also a member of the Custer County Historical Society for over 65 years, and is credited for preserving the historical landmark that is now the 1881 Custer County Courthouse Museum.

Sandra Ackman is the current director of the museum. She says Sundstrom was most known for her love of history.

Nebraska historian Jeff Barnes is the author of "The Great Plains Guide to Custer: 85 Forts, Fights and Other Sites." Some of the Custer sites covered in the book are Camp Sturgis near Yankton, Fort Randall at Pickstown and Custer's camps in the Black Hills. North Dakota sites include Fort Rice and Fort Abraham Lincoln, Custer's starting point on the trail to the Little Big Horn.