South Dakota has had some weird marketing campaigns lately, but maybe they should just turn things over to Rebecca of sunny Vermillion.
The way the White House described it today, she’s behind his decision to finally visit the one state in the country he’s never visited.
Because who can pass up a state known for being the warmer of the Dakotas?
Rebecca said not having Obama visit the state has left her brokenhearted, a sure sign that she’ll grow up and move to Minnesota.
Today, Sioux Falls Argus Leader columnist Stu Whitney provided a more South Dakotian list:
— The world’s largest and best-preserved Tyrannosaurus Rex specimen, nicknamed “Sue,” was discovered in western South Dakota and dates back to 65 million B.C., which coincidentally was the last time a Rapid City school won a state football title.
— Laura Ingalls Wilder grew up on a homestead near De Smet and brought prairie existence to life in classic novels such as “Little Town on the Prairie,” “The Long Winter,” “These Happy Golden Years” and “Who Wants to Move to the Twin Cities With Me?”
— The state doesn’t have major pro sports but has rallied around Division I athletics, in which South Dakota State and the University of South Dakota expose athletes to a higher level of competition, stir newfound excitement among fans and ultimately lose to North Dakota State.
— Lewis and Clark’s exploration of the Louisiana Territory in the early 1800s included an historic foray into South Dakota, with one journal entry reading: “Saw signs for palace made of corn but wisely decided not to exit the main thoroughfare.”
— The introduction of video lottery has had a profound economic impact on our state, with significant revenue reported by companies involved with surveillance cameras, debt collection and smoking shacks.
— The official state song is “Hail, South Dakota!” composed by DeeCort Hammitt in 1943 after his car was pelted by golf-ball sized pellets the one night he parked it out on the street.
— Sioux Falls, the state’s largest city, has seen enormous population growth as it transformed from a meatpacking town to an Upper Midwest cornerstone for health care and financial services. Predictably, the city council is waiting for details on these developments and doesn’t appreciate being left in the dark.
— South Dakota is known as pheasant country, a reputation that brings sportsmen from across the country to our state each fall for the thrill of the chase, the essence of group camaraderie and other stuff they don’t want their wives to know about.
— The Dust Bowl of the 1930s led to severe agricultural hardship on the Great Plains, creating levels of poverty and despair in South Dakota matched only by the plight of public school teachers in 2015.
— The state’s most notable landmark is Mount Rushmore, but some believe that the Crazy Horse Memorial will surpass that sculpture in terms of scope and grandeur sometime before aliens land on Earth and destroy our civilization, or we elect another Democratic governor.