Storybook Island – The place "Where Magic Happens" | Black Hills Travel Blog
  • Storybook Island – The place "Where Magic Happens"

Storybook Island is and has been a local and traveler favorite for years.  Tourists get a taste of the local hotspot when they visit, but for locals it is a landmark and defining characteristic of the community, bringing families together in a land of fantasy for years.

Storybook Island is supported by donations from the community and from all visitors.  They have friendly staff and a fun environment and numerous settings hosting characters that children love.  As you walk over the bridge to the entrance you find Rapunzel and Humpty Dumpty.  This offers a first glimpse of what is to come.

When we visit Storybook Island, we stop in to make our donation at the entry box, then head to the right for some sandpit fun, swings, fire engine and train imagination.  My children really love to pretend at the fire truck, they steer themselves to a burning fire and become heroes as they get hoses and douse the fire.  They also love the train and "driving it" with the various gadgets and wheels.

Many stories are highlighted in the park.  A few of our favorites include Winnie the Pooh, 101 Dalmations, Snow White and Pinnochio.  Pooh's area is located under a shady tree.  Children can enter it through a tunnel or from an open side.  There you will find many of the Pooh characters along with a little tree house, bridge and all, to climb and play on.

My daughter loves Snow White's house.  You can walk through the house and see a scene from the movie, cute little chipmunks and all.  Out in front of the house you find a beautiful life size figure of Snow White and all seven dwarves.  Each time we recount the names of each of the dwarves and my daughter looks at Snow White with adoring eyes.

The set for Pinocchio has Giapetto, Pinocchio, and Figaro upon the workbench.  Jimminy Cricket also makes an appearance on the background wall.  The children love to "pet" Figaro and to pretend that they are helping to build Pinocchio.

Other than the numerous Storybook settings and characters, that are far too numerous to mention, the park offers several play areas with swings, bars to climb, and tall metal slides, the kinds that are hard to find anymore. They also have a maze, that changes frequently so that kids cannot memorize the way out, tire swings, and a whole area devoted to children 5 and under to play on smaller equipment.

They also keep the children happy with their snack shop, located near Pooh's corner.  They sell cotton candy, ice cream, and all sorts of candy to bring a smile to any child's face.  My children love the birthday flavored ice cream, and the cotton candy flavor.  We stop in nearly every time we go and have that cool little snack before meeting Pooh.

As if all of this was not fun enough, Storybook Island offers a one final adventure for the kids, a train ride.  This train was recently upgraded from a fun tractor pull train with plastic barrel seats, to a full on tractor pull choo-choo train.  It is decked out with vibrant colors and looks exactly like a real train.  They have one open air car, two enclosed cars and handicap accommodations on the train as well.

Storybook Island also offers programs in the children's theater.  These change frequently and a schedule can be found on their website.  There is an area that can be rented out for children's birthday parties, which is a wonderful idea for the kids to get to play in such a fun setting together.  They have an event coming up called Once Upon  A Festival on September 7th and 8th.  This festival includes many vendors for food and games, princess and pirate makeovers and characters in costume.  This is a great Grand Finale for the season.

This family adventure always ranks high on our list of fun things to do during summer.  Unfortunately for the locals, the park is only open from Memorial Day until Labor day.  They are typically open 9am through 7pm, but will close down when lightning and thunderstorms are eminent.

The winter season holds one last treat for the year, the Christmas lights.  Every year sponsors decorate different areas of the park with lights.  The park is transformed into a twinkling paradise.  Hot cocoa and other treats are for sale at the snackbar, to help warm the guests.  The end of this adventure leads you to a character that all the kids love, Santa Claus.  The children line up to sit on Santa's lap and tell him their wishes for that Christmas.  They get a hug and a candy can...and wonderful dreams and memories for years to come.

Storybook Island is truly a magical place.  I urge you to visit them if you are planning to be in the area soon, and if you are a local, this is the last chance to take your kids to the park before another year passes.  Look at the park through your children's eyes and find all of the fantasy and the magic that they see come to life with every visit.  Please help to support this wonderful park, this staple of our community.

www.storybookisland.org
Office # 605-342-6357
Email chris@storybookisland.com

Once Upon A Festival

  • September 7 & 810 am to 5 pm
  • $2 per person (no age exempt)

This is a fundraiser to support Storybook Island.

For more information about Storybook Island please call or email!

About the Author

Shawna is a mother of two and professional photographer in the Black Hills region.  Being originally from out of state, she has been taken by the beauty of the Black Hills and intends to experience as much of it as she can.  With her camera and children she sets off...

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