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Festivals and family events in South Dakota

Molly Cerreta Smith loves writing about all things mommy, parenting, food, health and travel. When she's not staring into the face of her Mac, she loves to hike, read, do messy crafts with her kids and compete in BBQ competitions with he...

Festive fun in South Dakota

Spend some family time at a fun festival or family event. South Dakota is in full supply of both.

Festive fun in South Dakota


Music lovers unite in South Dakota for the annual Sioux Falls Jazz and Blues Festival which takes place every summer. This free-to-the-public two-day event boasts 18 hours of musical entertainment on two stages over the course of the weekend.

Think this festival is only about jazz? Think again! The JazzFest, July 26 to July 28, 2012, features music of every genre like blues, Zydeco, Latin, reggae, big band, rock, soul and funk.

Location: Yankton Trail Park, South Minnesota Avenue, Sioux Falls
, SD 57106

Phone: 605-335-6101

Rates: Admission is free



Mount Rushmore Independence Day Celebration

What better place to celebrate the Fourth of July than in the shadows of 60-foot carvings of four exalted presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln? South Dakota's Black Hills provide the backdrop for Mount Rushmore, the world's greatest mountain carving. Though once famous for the spectacular fireworks display, the event has ceased this tradition in respect of the land. However, celebrations are still in abundance at the Mount Rushmore Independence Day Celebration.


Location: 13000 Highway 244, Keystone, SD 57751

Phone: 605-335-6101

Rates: $11 for parking



Zippity Zoo Day

Held in Sioux Falls, South Dakota on June 9, the Great Plains Zoo's annual summer children's carnival -- Zippity Zoo Day -- is a must-do for families with children of all ages. The event will feature face painting, carnival games, Creature Features, zookeeper talks and live musical performances. Members of the zoo can attend the event for free. Guests can enjoy this event for the regular admission of the zoo.

Location: Great Plains Zoo, 805 South Kiwanis Ave., Sioux Falls, SD 57104

Phone: 605-335-6101

Rates: Free for zoo members, or included in cost of zoo admission: $7.50 adults, $4.50 kids 3-12



Big Q in 1-2 (Eureka's 125th Celebration)

To celebrate its 125th birthday, the city is pulling out all the stops with a 3-day extravaganza of live entertainment, tent activities, a parade, a huge fireworks display, wagon train and trail rides, a carnival, a car show and obscure events like a beard judging contest. Certain aspects of the event have an admission fee (such as the "big name entertainment" and the carnival). Others are free to the public.

Location: 7th Street, Eureka, SD 57437

Phone: 605-577-6250

Rates: Free admission, except to big name entertainment venues which will have varied fees



Gold Discovery Days

You'll find something fun for every member of your family at the Gold Discovery Days in Custer from July 27 to July 29, 2012
. Events include an archery tournament, a dodge ball tournament, a volleyball tournament, a quilt show, an arts and crafts fair, a Saturday morning parade, a hot air balloon rally, a 5K Fun Run, street dances, a car show and much more.

Location: 615 Washington St., Custer, SD 57730

Phone: 605-673-2383

Rates: Fees apply for some events, others are free


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