• Badlands formations against the blue sky; photo by Rikk Flohr

    Badlands

    National Park South Dakota

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  • Visitor Center Open / Road Construction

    Park roads and parking lots are under construction. Expect occasional 10 - 15 minute road construction delays along Hwy 240 Loop Road. There is limited parking at the Ben Reifel Visitor Center. Please follow the signs to park in designate areas.

Badlands to Host Heritage Celebration

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Date: July 11, 2012
Contact: Aaron Kaye, 605-433-5243

Badlands will host the 4th Annual Heritage Celebration, July 20-22. The celebration's events will focus on traditional Native American songs, dances, and crafts, and are included in the park admission fee. Activities will begin with Friday's 9:00 p.m. evening program at the Cedar Pass Campground Amphitheater, and will continue throughout the day on Saturday. On Sunday, join the Oglala Sioux Parks and Recreation Authority (OSPRA) at the White River Visitor Center for additional programming.

Saturday's activities near the Ben Reifel Visitor Center include traditional Lakota music and dance performances beginning at 9:00 a.m. Additional activities, demonstrations, and vendors will be on site all day. Participants include: Robert Two Crow as the Master of Ceremonies; Dallas Chief Eagle, hoop dancing; Michael He Crow, flint knapping and the use of an atlatl; and, Jeanne Bedell will explain cradleboards. The Keynote speaker, Dr. Jace DeCory will present the evening program, "Traditional Lakota Philosophy" at 9:00 p.m. Following her talk, visitors can experience the Badlands night sky using park telescopes and binoculars.

This event is made possible through funding from Badlands Natural History Association, Friends of the Badlands, South Dakota Humanities Council, an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, South Dakota Arts Council, Forever Resorts, and the National Park Service.

Badlands National Park is located 9 miles south of exit 131, Interstate 90. Don't miss the opportunity to visit Minuteman Missile National Historic Site on this visit as well. Minuteman Missile will offer tours of its Delta-1 Launch Control Center daily at 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. Missile silo Delta-9 (I-90, Exit 116) is also open to the public daily from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tour tickets are given out on a first come, first served basis by coming to the Visitor Center, located in Cactus Flat, also off I-90 at Exit 131, adjacent to the Conoco gas station .

For information on lodging and camping in the park, refer to Cedar Pass Lodge

Did You Know?

Scientist uncovers fossils at the Pig Dig

The former Pig Dig was discovered in June 1993 when two visitors from Iowa discovered a large backbone protruding from the ground near the Conata Picnic Area. Originally thought to be a 4-day excavation, field work continued for over a decade, yielding more than 10,000 fossilized bones for study.