Thursday, September 27, 2012

Sioux Falls, Corn Palace, and Sunset

Instead of exchanging gifts with each other for our 25th anniversary, Doug and I decided to take another western vacation.

September 12, the day we left home, was just a travel day, with nothing of interest to share here. The next day, however, we passed through Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Doug and I have been through Sioux Falls several times, but we've never explored the area. It was always just a place on the way to our destination further west.

Last year, though, friends of ours visited Sioux Falls and found the actual falls for which the town is named. Not to be outdone by our friends, Doug and I went looking for the falls on this trip. And we're so glad we did. What a beautiful place.

Falls Park at Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Falls Park at Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Falls Park at Sioux Falls, South Dakota

After spending an hour or so at Falls Park, we went on to Mitchell, South Dakota, where we had a reservation at the Best Western Motor Inn for that night. In Mitchell, we found a new (to us) restaurant called Whiskey Creek Wood Fire Grill. We loved it. It's similar to a Texas Roadhouse or a Logan's. Very good food. Wonderful sweet potato fries.

After supper, we drove downtown to see the Corn Palace, which is a multi-use center for the community and region. It hosts stage shows, as well as sports events in its arena.
The World's Only Corn Palace stands as a majestic, uniquely American, folk art icon on the rolling prairies of South Dakota. Mitchell's first Corn Palace was built in 1892, when the city of Mitchell was just 12 years old. Early settlers displayed the fruits of their harvest on the building exterior in order to prove the fertility of South Dakota soil.
The third and present building was completed for its first festival at the present location in 1921. Each year a new decorating theme is chosen, and the outside of the Corn Palace is stripped and redecorated with new corn and grains. Roughly 275 thousand ears of corn are sawed in half lengthwise and nailed to the building, following the patterns created by local artists.

The Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota

A closeup of one of the murals on the building, made of ears of corn

The arena inside the Corn Palace

The Corn Palace adorned with its evening lighting

By the time we had checked out the Corn Palace, the sun was setting; and it was showing promise of being spectacular. So we went looking for a place from which to watch it and found the perfect site at Mitchell Lake.

Sunset at Mitchell Lake, Mitchell, South Dakota

Notice the arc around the setting sun in this picture.

I took literally hundreds of photographs on this trip. These are just the tip of the iceberg. I have lots of sorting to do to pick out a representative few to share with you all.

More to come in future posts.


  1. oh, my. that sunset... speechless.

    i have heard of the corn palace! so neat!!!

  2. Loved your pics Linda - keep 'em coming! It was like re-visiting Sioux Falls and The Corn Palace all over again!

  3. Lovely shots and a fun area to enjoy. The red stone there at the falls is often used for old buildings in the area.

  4. You have captured the beauty of that sunset so well. I love all the pictures. That Corn Palace is something very different.Thanks for sharing these images.

  5. Wow wow wow. Breathtaking sunset! Linda, you really nailed these shots. Bravo, my dear!!! Would love to tour that area of the country one day.

  6. Welcome home, Special Friend. I love seeing your photos.. I will post a blog on Monday. Between George and I together, we took almost 5000 pictures. GADS!!!

    We had talked about seeing the Wall Drug, Corn Palace and Sioux Falls --but since we were going all of the way to Kansas City (on our way home), we didn't stop at any of those places. SO---thanks for sharing your pictures!!!!!


  7. Great idea for celebration to go travelling, Linda.
    The Falls Park represents quite an unusual scenery; the stones first seemingly small but in the next photographs growing in size significantly. The Corn Palace looks unbelievable, creating the patterns must take its time!

    1. Traveling definitely suits Doug and me more than a party or an elaborate gift would. Falls Park was gorgeous. We'd never seen anyplace like it. I can't imagine the work involved with redecorating the Corn Palace every year. There must be some dedicated folks in Mitchell, SD. :)


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