The unofficial, and frankly delicious, state entrée of South Dakota is deep-fried, cubed pieces of beef or lamb. This mouthwatering appetizer is found in multiple Rapid City restaurants, but favorites include Minervas Restaurant & Bar and Dakotah Steakhouse. If you’d rather incorporate it into your main meal, try the Beef Bone Ramen from Bokujo Ramen, Rapid City’s new authentic ramen restaurant.

Buffalo burgers, steaks and more

South Dakota produces the largest number of bison for farming in the United States due to the animal’s nativity to the Great Plains. Chances are if your Rapid City dining location has burgers, they’ll also have a bison burger option like at Firehouse Brewing Co. Beyond burgers, head to Tally’s Silver Spoon for breakfast and enjoy buffalo hanger steak and eggs. For lunch or dinner, try Murphey’s Pub & Grill for savory buffalo meatloaf.

Pickle beer

Simply add a pickle spear to your favorite light draft beer to enjoy an iconic South Dakota drink – an odd combination (unless you’re from the state) that you can find at any sports bar. Or, if you’d rather try small-batch local brews, Rapid City is home to the largest collection of craft breweries on the western side of the state.

If your Rapid City dining option has burgers, chances are they’ll also offer a bison burger option (like here at Firehouse Brewing). Photo courtesy of Visit Rapid City

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*At this time, most locations do not have COVID-19 protocols. Contact each venue for up-to-date information.

Summer Nights (May-August): Weekly downtown concert series with live music and street vendors.

Mount Rushmore Evening Lighting Ceremony (May-September): View America’s Shrine of Democracy after sunset and listen to a park ranger speak about the monument’s history.

Crazy Horse Memorial Volksmarches (June and September): Bi-annual 10K to the arm of the world’s largest mountain-carving-in-progress.

Hills Alive Summer Music Festival (July): Music festival featuring the best of Christian artists on two stages over two days.

Kool Deadwood Nights (August): Rock ‘n’ roll Main Street experience with classic cars, classic music and a parade.

Sturgis Motorcycle Rally (August): The world’s largest motorcycle rally, including scenic rides, concerts, entertainment and street food.

Custer State Park Buffalo Roundup & Arts Festival (September): Cowboys, cowgirls and park rangers round up a herd of over 1,300 buffalo. Pair with Custer State Park’s three-day Arts Festival.

Pumpkin Festival (September): Downtown Rapid City’s biggest festival, featuring pumpkin catapults and weigh-offs, vendors and more.

Bierbörse Festival (October): Beer stock exchange, activities and polka music.

Black Hills Powwow (October): Native American dancers and drum groups gather for one of the nation’s largest powwows.

Native American dancers and drum groups gather for one of the nation’s largest powwows at the Black Hills Powwow each October in Rapid City. Photo courtesy South Dakota Tourism

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Unique and unexpected, Rapid City’s Sioux Pottery features handmade collectibles created by local Native American Sioux Indian artists. Intricate pottery pieces and specialty items are formed from red clay dug up just outside of Rapid City, in the Black Hills of South Dakota.

The Paha Sapa (Black Hills) have provided food, shelter and substance for the Great Sioux Nation for decades, and the area continues to produce red clay today. Visitors to Sioux Pottery can not only purchase one-of-a-kind pottery, but also see the entire process from start to finish. Each piece is poured, shaped, fired in a kiln, sanded for finishing, painted and carved with designs and symbols important to the Lakota culture.

In 2020, Sioux Pottery was selected to participate in the Made In American Product Showcase at the White House – an annual show that highlighted American-made products from each of the 50 states.

Intricate pottery pieces and specialty items at Rapid City’s Sioux Pottery are formed from red clay dug up in the Black Hills of South Dakota. Courtesy Visit Rapid City

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In the Rapid City area, traveling to your destination is part of the experience. Take in the brilliant display of granite spires, eroding buttes and captivating waterfalls on these top 10 scenic drives. (Friendly reminder: Our beautiful scenic drives have sharp/tight corners. Drive with care!)

One of the most famous scenic drives in the Black Hills is along Highway 16A. This highway offers amazing views of Mount Rushmore (perfectly framed), the Black Hills, Needles Highway and Custer State Park. This drive also gives groups the opportunity to drive through a handful of scenic tunnels. These beautiful granite passageways are known to be narrow, but don’t let that shy you away from this epic experience.

Forget the long commute. Stay in Rapid City and you’ll be within an hour’s drive from some pretty spectacular places.

A motorcoach bus squeezes between some rock walls on the Needles Highway in the Black Hills of South Dakota. Courtesy Visit Rapid City

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Stephen Yellowhawk was born in Eagle Butte, South Dakota, on the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation and raised in Rapid City, South Dakota. He was inspired to dance and learn more about his culture primarily from some situations that arose in his schooling. His grandfather then created his first regalia, and he started dancing at 14 years old.

“Traditional dancing and my Christian belief have strengthened my self-confidence, self-esteem, self-respect and love for all my relatives,” Stephen said. “It has opened many doors and created many paths for my family and I.”He has been the board president for the Black Hills Powwow Association for 10 years and has seen this powwow become one of the largest in the world.

“This leadership opportunity is a blessing for me. My grandfather has told me stories of coming to visit Rapid City in the 1950s, and things were quite different here then,” Stephen said. “He says he remembers seeing signs on some of the store fronts that said ‘No Indians allowed,’ but now to have one of the largest powwows in the world in this same community shows how far we have come as a community, working on building bridges within our diverse community.”

The Black Hills Powwow has become one of the largest in the world. Courtesy

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Dakota Drum Company

Dakota Drum Company has been in business for 20 years and specializes in traditional buffalo hide drums, powwow drums and traditional buffalo hide drums hand-painted by Lakota and Sioux artist Sonja Holy Eagle, who has won many major art show awards.

Known for their traditional buffalo hide drums made from hand-scraped buffalo rawhide with cottonwood frames, as well as one-sided drums, they pride themselves on the quality of their products and their Native American art.

They also carry hide paintings by Sonja, along with traditional beadwork and quillwork by artists from the Cheyenne River, Pine Ridge and Rosebud Reservations. You can also find beautiful buffalo robes, sweetgrass and sage, along with many other traditional arts.

Dakota Drum Company

Star of the West Hat Company

Star of the West Hat Company is known for hat refurbishing and custom felt hats that will ship all over the world! In their 20-year history, they have had the privilege of building hats for everyone from ranchers and rodeo cowboys to musicians and movie sets.

The store is pretty small, but they are able to show the kinds of equipment and materials that go into building hats as well as the process of building hats. With a small work area, there could be some hands-on experience for interested groups!

Star of the West Hat Company

Suzi Cappa Art Center

Suzie Cappa Art Center is a downtown non-profit studio and gallery where artists of all abilities create, exhibit and market their work. It offers an inspirational atmosphere for artists and visitors alike and is a division of Black Hills Works, which provides services and support to more than 630 adults with disabilities. Creations by their artists are sold nationwide and may be viewed and purchased on their website.

Suzie Cappa Art Center

For more information on Rapid City, visit

Chislic Festival

July 25, 2020

Freeman, South Dakota


Chislic is a South Dakota tradition – especially in southeastern South Dakota. Legend says it was brought to that corner of our state in the 1800s by German/Russian immigrants. Today, chislic (beef or lamb on a stick) has grown from humble origins to a dish that was declared the official “nosh” of South Dakota in 2018. One year later, the first-ever Chislic Festival in Freeman attracted more than 8,000 people! Come enjoy this flavorful festival and celebrate with cooking competitions, live entertainment and more.

Chislic Festival. Credit: South Dakota Tourism

80th Anniversary of Sturgis Motorcycle Rally

August 7-16, 2020

Sturgis, South Dakota


The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is one of the world’s oldest and largest motorcycle gatherings, offering incredible riding, exhibitors, motorcycle shows, demo rides, racing, concerts and much more. Find out why this international phenomenon draws motorcycle legends, superstars and hundreds of thousands of enthusiasts to the Black Hills each year. It’s also listed as one of the “1,000 Places to See Before You Die.”

Main Street at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. Credit: South Dakota Tourism

Black Hills Powwow

October 9-11, 2020

Rapid City, South Dakota


The Black Hills Powwow (or He Sapa Wacipi Na Oskate) is a preeminent Black Hills event featuring three days filled with Native American singing, dancing, drum groups, art displays, hand games, athletic competitions, and a variety of other events. Over the decades, the Black Hills Powwow has become one of the premier American Indian cultural events in the United States, attracting hundreds of dancers, singers, artisans as well as thousands of spectators from across North America.

Black Hills Powwow. Credit: South Dakota Tourism


For more information on the Great American West state of South Dakota, visit

Black Hills Powwow

As one of the premier cultural events and one of top three powwows in the nation, the Black Hills Powwow features a variety of dancers and events. This event attracts hundreds of spectators from around the world. Dancers come to this event from Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota and South Dakota. Most dancers at The Black Hills Powwow were winners from regional dances and fill the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center. From the youth jingle dancers to elders, the beautiful dancers go around and around for all to see. This is a must-see event.

Learn more

Black Hills Powwow. Credit: South Dakota Tourism

Crazy Horse Volksmarch

Crazy Horse Memorial hosts a Volksmarch in the Spring and Fall. Hikers get the opportunity to climb to the arm of Crazy Horse Memorial for a close-up view of the largest mountain carving in progress. This opportunity is only offered twice a year. The bi-annual Crazy Horse Volksmarch is a 10K or 6.2-mile hike that follows dirt trails and gravel work roads up to the Crazy Horse Mountain Carving.

Learn more

Crazy Horse Volksmarch. Credit: Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation

Black Hills Stock Show & Rodeo

The Black Hills Stock Show & Rodeo® is the second largest event in the state of South Dakota following the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. An estimated attendance of 331,000 people attend the ten-day event held annually from the last weekend in January to the first weekend in February. The stock show features 96 different agriculture driven events. Events such as the Ranch Rodeo and Sheep Dog Trials are crowd favorites.

Learn more

Black Hills Stock Show & Ranch Rodeo. Courtesy of: Visit Rapid City

For more information on the Rapid City, South Dakota area, visit

Sculpture Project in Rapid City, South Dakota. Photo credit: Visit Rapid City

The Sculpture Project: Passage of Wind & Water

As a large-scale, long-term, on-site work in granite. The Sculpture Project: Passage of Wind & Water at Main Street Square aims to connect with the region’s significant sculptural tradition.

Additional premier cultural experiences in Rapid City include downtown’s Art Alley, the Berlin Wall Exhibit in Memorial Park, and the Dahl Arts Center.

Art Alley in downtown Rapid City, South Dakota. Photo credit: Visit Rapid City

Art Alley

Located between 6th and 7th Streets downtown, artists’ exuberant and colorful expressions captivate from building to building. The free spirits who have offered their talents to this unique public arts project aren’t afraid to dream big.

Berlin Wall Exhibit in Rapid City, South Dakota. Photo credit: Visit Rapid City

Memorial Park / Berlin Wall Exhibit

Cold War relics tell their tale in the Berlin Wall Exhibit, located in Memorial Park alongside Rapid Creek in the center of Rapid City, along with a number of sculptures and memorials, a rose garden near Memorial Lake and band shell.

Dahl Arts Center in Rapid City, South Dakota. Photo credit: Visit Rapid City

Dahl Arts Center

The Dahl Arts Center on downtown Rapid City offers a variety of cultural exhibits, as well as classes, seminars and free art adventures, It has severed as the premier western South Dakota center for contemporary visual arts, arts education and performing arts since its opening in 1974.

To learn more, contact:
Visit Rapid City

512 Main Street Suite 240
Rapid City, SD 57701 USA
Phone: 605-718-8482

Prairie Edge Trading Company and Galleries
Prairie Edge has the finest selections of Native American art, crafts, jewelry, books and music to be displayed anywhere in the region.

Photo courtesy of Visit Rapid City

Main Street Square
Located in the heart of Downtown Rapid City, Main Street Square is a fun-filled public space that features special events, arts and culture, live concerts, seasonal ice skating and interactive fountains. Surrounded by the City of Presidents, boutiques, eateries and galleries, Main Street Square is a destination the whole family can enjoy.

Photo by Visit Rapid City

Art Alley
A slight detour of Main Street drops you into a stunning expression of Rapid City’s creative community. Expect to be dazzled with bright color and ingenious creativity on a stroll through the heart of Downtown.

Photo courtesy of Visit Rapid City

The Journey Museum & Learning Center
The Journey Museum takes you on an incredible trek through time, from the formation of the mystical Black Hills over 2.5 billion years ago to the continuing saga of the Western frontier.

Photo courtesy of Visit Rapid City

Landstrom’s and Mt. Rushmore Black Hills Gold Free Factory Tour
Over a span of 14 years, 360 goldminers-turned-craftsmen carved a rough granite mountain into a polished national treasure, known today as Mount Rushmore. Today, in dozens of intricate steps, our craftspeople carry on this tradition of quality and excellence with every piece of Mt. Rushmore Black Hills Gold and diamond jewelry.

Photo courtesy of Visit Rapid City

City of Presidents
Visitors to historic downtown Rapid City are greeted by the City of Presidents, a series of life-size bronze statues of our nation’s past presidents along the city’s streets and sidewalks.

Visit Rapid City
512 Main Street Suite 240
Rapid City, SD 57701 USA
Phone: 605-718-8482