8. We’ve got the (indie music) beat.
Maybe it’s because we’re a college town (Augustana University, University of Sioux Falls, Southeast Tech). Maybe it’s because our winters are long and our patience in waiting for Hozier to drop another album is short. Regardless, Sioux Falls independent record label Different Folk incubates a lengthy and impressive roster of local musicians for a city with fewer than 175,000 residents.
A partnership of artists and entrepreneurs, Different Folk has released vinyl from plains-folk favorites Foghorn Stringband, Union Grove Pickers, Burlap Wolf King, Jack Klatt, Ryan Kickland, and “banjo babe” Jami Lynn. Step it out old school and pick up Different Folk pressings and other vinyl and CDs at Total Drag Records on East 12th Street or at one of Last Stop CD Shop’s two locations: West 41st Ave. and East 10th Street.
9. We come for the burritos, stay for the sambusas, and come back for the pho.
Sioux Falls is home to sizeable communities of folks hailing from Central America, Eastern Africa, and East Asia. Mexican, Ethiopian, and Vietnamese culinary traditions are making an imprint on local cuisines, as evidenced by a burgeoning number of family eateries featuring recipes from the homeland.
Mama’s Ladas downtown specializes in homemade salsas, sangria, and, as the name implies, fresh, made-to-order enchiladas. Sambusas (Ethiopian potato and meat-or-vegetable stuffed pockets) and awaze tibs (spiced beef with jalapenos) can be secured at Lalibela on West 11th Street, as can strong coffee, spongy injera bread, and key wot (spicy beef stews) at Shalom Ethiopian Coffee House and Restaurant on East 10th. Noodle lovers won’t be disappointed by Pho Quynh’s pho (noodle soup), cù lao (hot pot), and fresh spring rolls. If you’re lucky, you’ll be greeted and seated by pint-sized James Danh, the owner’s son and de facto maître d’.