The State of South Dakota
The state of South Dakota is located in the northern central part of the United States. It is divided by the Missouri River, which many local residents refer to as the “East River” and “West River.” The state is known for its Black Hills, which are low, pine-covered mountains that are very important to the American Indian population. This region is a major tourist draw for the state, and is home to the world-famous Mount Rushmore.
The climate in South Dakota is characterized by high temperatures and low rainfall. There are four distinct seasons and high temperatures are often close to 90 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and 60 degrees Fahrenheit at night. However, the state is prone to dry spells in summer, when temperatures can rise well above 100 degrees F for days at a time. Low temperatures are generally in the teens and low twenties.
Rapid City: This city is the second largest city in the state, with a 2010 population of 67,956. It is situated on the eastern edge of the Black Hills and was founded in 1876. Its economy is based largely on defense spending and tourism. Rapid City is home to an Air Force base.
South Dakota is home to many diverse ethnic groups. Germans and Norwegians make up nearly a quarter of the state’s population, and the state has large populations of Native Americans, English-speaking people, and Irish-Americans. There is also a thriving tourism industry, with Badlands National Park and Mount Rushmore as the top tourist attractions.