Redlin Art Center, Watertown

Art & History Along Interstate 29

South Dakota is a state full of history and culture

A wide variety of opportunities for historical and cultural engagement can be found while traveling along Interstate 29. This sample itinerary is a snapshot of some of the best opportunities to have a cultural experience along this eastern corridor that runs north to south from border to border. 

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Sisseton

Enter South Dakota on Interstate 29 by heading south from North Dakota to the Sisseton area. 

Horse drawn sleigh in snow
Frontier Christmas at Fort Sisseton
Fort Sisseton
Fort Sisseton Historic State Park
Stavig House 4:3 external image
Stavig House

Fort Sisseton Historic State Park

The historic 1864 fort is part of a picturesque state park that tells of the area’s past. Visitors can walk the grounds and see inside the barracks and other buildings once used by U.S. Army officers and guards.

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Stavig House

Constructed in 1916, this historic home was built by Scandinavian craftsmen that combined elements of Victoria and Arts & Crafts styles. The home is open as a museum and listed on the National Historic Register.

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Native American feathered headdress
Travel Planner Tip:

The annual Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate powwow is one of the longest-running powwows in the country. Learn more about powwows across the state by clicking here.

 

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Watertown

Move south (1 hour/ 59 miles) and visit Watertown, a beautiful city with an abundance of outdoor recreation.

Redlin Art
Terry Redlin Art Center
Mellette House
Mellette House
Town Players Theatre Watertown 4 to 3 ratio
Town Players Theater

Terry Redlin Art Center

Terry Redlin captured on canvas images of nature and small-town America. Enjoy more than 160 original oil paintings, shop three exclusive gift shops or stroll the 30-acre Conservation Park. 

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Mellette House

The Mellette House was once the home of South Dakota’s first governor, Arthur Calvin Mellette. Today visitors can tour the home to view the spectacular Italianate architecture and see what life was like in the late 1800s.

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Town Players Theater

The Town Players’ productions will entertain you with a new play every few months. It’s live entertainment at its finest!  Season tickets are available, but you can always just come for the evening or a Sunday matinee.

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Goss Opera House - Main Interior
Travel Planner Tip:

Catch a show or take a fascinating tour of historic and recently renovated Goss Opera House. 

Brookings

Continue 1 hour south to Brookings. It’s the home of South Dakota State University, the largest university in South Dakota.

South Dakota Art Museum
South Dakota Art Museum
McCrory Gardens
McCrory Gardens
Ag Museum
South Dakota Agricultural Heritage Museum

South Dakota Art Museum

 
With more than 7,000 objects in its collection, the museum features rotating exhibits of Harvey Dunn paintings, Native American art, Marghab Linens, and work by author/illustrator Paul Goble as well as art from other regional, national and international artists.

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McCrory Gardens

The gardens feature more than 25 acres of flowers, trees, shrubs and grasses as well as an additional 40-acre arboretum that provides a place for both scientific study and public exhibition.

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South Dakota Agricultural Heritage Museum

Located on the campus of South Dakota State University, this museum is dedicated to preserving South Dakota’s rich history in agriculture and rural heritage. Exhibits feature technology, crops and livestock.

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Woman and man enjoying ice cream at SDSU Dairy Barn
Travel Planner Tip:

Stop by for a scoop of ice cream made on-site at SDSU. 

De Smet

Made famous in the Little House on the Prairie books and TV series, De Smet celebrates the life of the Ingalls family in South Dakota. De Smet is located 40 miles off the interstate. 

Hands On Ingalls Homestead
Laura Ingalls Homestead
Ingalls School
Ingalls Childhood School
Loftus Store
Loftus Store

Ingalls Homestead

On the quarter-section of land where Laura Ingalls Wilder's family homesteaded, visitors experience South Dakota pioneer heritage through hands-on activities.

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Laura Ingalls Wilder Historic Homes

Tour original homes from the books as well as a school attended by the Ingalls children.

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Loftus Store

Stop by the Loftus Store for Little House on the Prairie books, souvenirs, and nostalgic candy and treats.

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Performance on the homestead
Travel Planner Tip:

Held annually during the month of July, the Laura Ingalls Wilder Days event attracts visitors from around the world. 

Sioux Falls

Enjoy the art, culture and cuisine of South Dakota’s largest city.

Falls Park
Falls park
Sculpture Walk
Sculpture Walk
Good Earth State Park
Good Earth State Park

Falls Park

As the namesake of South Dakota’s largest city, Falls Park is a popular location for both locals and visitors. In addition to the falls themselves, visitors can see some of the first buildings built in the city, enjoy a wide view from an observation tower, and enjoy lunch at the Overlook Café that’s located in the old Light and Power Company building.

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Sculpture Walk

Enjoy more than 55 unique and changing sculptures at the Sculpture Walk that’s provided visitors to downtown Sioux Falls with the opportunity to take a self-guided tour of beautiful and unique art in an outdoor setting. 

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Good Earth State Park at Blood Run

This park is one of the oldest sites of long-term human habitation in the United States. The most recent addition the state park system, Good Earth offers opportunities for birding and hiking as well as the chance to learn some fascinating facts at the visitor center.

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Brule, Levitt at the Falls, Sioux Falls
Travel Planner Tip:

Levitt at the Falls is a state-of-the-art outdoor music venue on the edges of Falls Park and downtown Sioux Falls. Each summer, the venue hosts 50 free concerts featuring a variety of artists and genres. 

Vermillion

Only an hour south on Interstate 29, Vermillion lies atop a bluff of the last natural stretch of the beautiful and pristine Missouri River.

National Music Museum
National Music Museum
String instrument display
National Music Museum
W.H. Over Museum
W.H. Over Museum

National Music Museum

The museum holds a world-renowned collection of more than 15,000 musical instruments. The museum just underwent an architectural renovation and expansion, making a visit to the NMM better than ever!

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W.H. Over Museum

Devoted to the collection, preservation, exhibition and interpretation of South Dakota’s history, the W.H. Over Museum features items that represent natural history, inhabitants and the various ethnic groups that have called South Dakota home.

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Shakespear Festival
Travel Planner Tip:

Each year in June, Vermillion is home to the South Dakota Shakespeare Festival. Entertainment includes a full-length production, live music, food and more!

Yankton

Located 20 miles west of Vermillion is Yankton. It was the first capital of Dakota Territory, which included Wyoming, Montana and both Dakotas in the 1860s. 

Walkers on Meridian Bridge Yankton
Meridian Bridge
Meridian Bridge
Meridian Bridge
Gavins Point National Fish Hatchery and Acquarium
Gavins Point National Fish Hatchery and Acquarium

Meridian Bridge

The bridge spans the Missouri National Recreational River (which is also a national park). Visitors can walk, run or ride bikes on both levels of the bridge while enjoying a wonderful vantage point to look upon the river's wild and scenic waters. 

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Gavins Point National Fish

Hatchery and Aquarium

This hatchery has produced more than five billion fish for release in Midwestern waters. In the cool, softly lit surroundings of the aquarium, visitors become part of the aquatic environment while fish and turtles swim in 13 tanks. 

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Riverboat Days
Travel Planner Tip:

Enjoy live music, local food and art every August during Riverboat Days.

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