September 10, 2008
Good choice on the drive yesterday! We woke this morning and used what WOULD have been drive time to sort out the trailer and van and reorganize. Between the things the girls brought, the things Mr. B brought for the girls, and the things we’ve collected along the way, some areas of our living and transportation quarters had become nearly unmanageable. Still, we had time to play in the playground at the campground, check out the beach on the river shore then take a 1-mile drive to our first stop of the day: Akta Lakota Museum.
The museum on the site of the St. Joseph Indian School was very nicely organized. It followed a timeline from pre-horse day of the Sioux people to modern Sioux life. The most amazing thing I saw was a beaded story stick that followed nearly two decades of tribal news in the mid 19th century, all represented in the tiniest beads you can imagine.
From there we continued east to Mitchell, S.D. at the suggestion of several friend, relatives and others who learned we’d be in the Midwest. Mention the Dakotas and many who’ve been here will tell you Mitchell Corn Palace is worth the detour! Well, it was pretty impressive! Every May they begin scrapping off the murals from the prior year then, using this year’s corn, they create brand new murals all over the outside of the structure. The corn is not artificially colored, but raised these different colors. There are also murals inside. The facility includes a sporting venue (basketball court which is also used for wrestling matches) that can be used for large events (graduations, etc.) and a very large stage plus comfy seating.
On to Laura Ingalls Wilder Territory – De Smet, SD!