Two Great Events, One Great Weekend | Black Hills Travel Blog
  • Two Great Events, One Great Weekend

The leaves are peaking, the temperatures are cooling, and South Dakota's premier event is just days away. The 51st annual Custer State Park Buffalo Roundup and Arts Festival is taking place this coming weekend!

The buffalo roundup is South Dakota’s pride and joy. And it should be. It’s an amazing experience. People talk about it for months beforehand. Folks involved in the round-up reminisce about it over cups of coffee at local café tables. Photographers compare shots and video footage. Visitors ask about it all summer long. Where is the best viewing area? Can I take photos?

A large group of bison crest a hilltop. A large group of bison crest a hilltop.

So dust off your binoculars and long camera lens and head to Custer State Park for an unforgettable weekend. While the Arts Festival gets underway on Thursday, Sept. 29, the actual buffalo roundup is on Friday, Sept. 30. It starts at 9:30 a.m. and the buffalo are usually all rounded up and in the corrals by noon. Guests must stay in designated viewing areas until the buffalo are corralled. It is recommended that you get there early so that you get a good viewing spot and don’t miss out on any of the action! The parking areas open at 6:30 a.m.

Make sure to bring your folding chairs, sunscreen, rain gear (just in case), extra warm layers, and of course, your camera. Bring your own lunch or pay to eat the lunch at the corrals once the buffalo are all rounded up.

In addition to the roundup, don’t miss out on the Arts Festival and Chili Cook-off. Located in the meadow across from the Peter Norbeck Outdoor Education Center, over 150 vendors will be showcasing their fine arts and crafts. Sunday, Oct. 2,  is the fall opportunity to hike to the top of Crazy Horse Memorial during the Autumn Volksmarch.

A couple takes a selfie under the face of the Crazy Horse. A couple takes a selfie under the face of the Crazy Horse.

So head down to Custer and Custer State Park this weekend. Stroll through the vendor booths, see the power of the majestic buffalo, and come face to face with a legend—all under the wide, blue South Dakota sky.

For more detailed information about the buffalo roundup, click here.

About the Author

Alicia is a South Dakota native with family roots in Beresford. She attended Augustana University in Sioux Falls—a year of which she spent studying in Norway and traveling throughout Europe. She acquired her degree in Sociology and International Studies. Despite her love of travel, she and her husband have thoroughly enjoyed making Rapid City their home. She satisfies her wanderlust by soaking up the beautiful scenery and historic treasures that the Hills have to offer. She is the Communications Director for Black Hills & Badlands Tourism Association.

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