Introduction to Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Sioux Falls is South Dakota's largest city and also the county seat of the state's Minnehaha County. Nestled in the southeastern corner of South Dakota, Sioux Falls hugs the borders of three neighboring states: Minnesota (to the northeast), Iowa (to the southeast), and Nebraska (to the southwest). The city is located at the intersection of Interstates I-29 and I-90, and is also serviced by I-229 and South Dakota State Highway 42.
Founded in the mid-19th century by land speculators attracted by the cascades of the Big Sioux River and the area's beauty and water power, Sioux Falls became incorporated as a village in 1876 by the legislative assembly of the Dakota Territory. Restricted by its village charter, Sioux Falls subsequently petitioned to become a city and was granted its city charter in 1883. The arrival of the railroads in the 1880s ushered in an era of prosperity and an associated population boom. During the early part of the 20th century, the Sioux Falls economy centered on agriculturally-based industries, triggered by the opening of the John Morrell meat packing plant in the city in 1909. By the latter half of the century, the city's economy had greatly diversified and become more service-based, focusing on finance, health care, and retail trade.
Arts and Culture in Sioux Falls
There are plenty of opportunities to enjoy arts and culture in Sioux Falls. A wealth of galleries and museums expounding on art and native history abound in the city, which is also filled with a wide variety of statues and historical monuments. The Delbridge Museum of Natural History features one of the country's most fascinating collections of mounted wildlife. The Old Courthouse Museum, housed in a restored 1890s building, offers exhibits which chronicle the natural and cultural histories of the Siouxland region. The Sioux Empire Medical Museum, housed at Sioux Valley Hospital, features medical history displays dating from the early 1900s and provides visitors with an appreciation of medical progress since that time. The Pettigrew Home and Museum, housed in the restored former home of Richard F. Pettigrew, South Dakota's first full-term U.S. senator, displays artifacts which Pettigrew had collected from all over the world. The Washington Pavilion of Arts and Science is home to the Kirby Science Discover Center and also to two performing arts centers which host several operas and Broadway productions throughout the year. Great Bear Recreation Park offers downhill and cross country skiing for both beginners and advanced skiers. Annual events in town include Jazzfest, the city's Jazz and Blues Festival. Held in July at Yankton Trail Park, the two-day outdoor musical event has become a summer favorite in Sioux Falls and the surrounding region.
For sports fans, Sioux Falls has a wide variety of teams to suit all tastes. The city boasts a minor league professional baseball team, the Sioux Falls Canaries. The Canaries, who play in the American Association, are an independent team unaffiliated with any Major League club. The Sioux Falls Arena is home to three local teams: the Skyforce, Stampede, and Storm. The Sioux Falls Skyforce is a pro basketball team playing in the NBA Development League. The Sioux Falls Stampede play pro hockey in the United States Hockey League (USHL). The Sioux Falls Storm is an arena football team belonging to the United Indoor Football League (UIFL). Soccer also has a home in Sioux Falls with the Sioux Falls Spitfire, a team in the USL's Premier Development League.