PIERRE, S.D. – (DRG News) This month brings the annual Buffalo Roundup and Arts Festival to western South Dakota. The 48th annual Custer State Park Buffalo Roundup will come on a different day on the calendar this year—a Friday. Traditionally, the roundup was held on the last Monday of September each year, but it was decided a year ago to try something different for 2013. This year’s roundup will be held Friday, September 27. Governor Dennis Daugaard says it’s believed if the roundup is held on a Friday, people will stay in the Black Hills for a few more days-enjoying what the area has to offer.
Daugaard says his office is part of the roundup because business prospects and journalists are invited to come watch the roundup and take part in other planned activities. He says right now, it looks like there is an increase in the number of business prospects that have indicated they are willing to attend this year. Thousands of citizens gather annually to watch approximately 1,300 buffalo rounded up in Custer State Park where they are then sorted, branded, vaccinated and some are sold in the fall buffalo sale. Daugaard says it’s hard to know right now whether a Friday roundup will impact the number of people that come to watch the roundup process from a hill above where the animals are corralled—and whether they stay to enjoy other Black Hills attractions during the weekend that follows.
More than 14,000 people attended last year’s Monday roundup, which officials said matched crowd numbers from the previous four years. The annual Roundup Arts Festival at Custer State Park saw an increase in visitor numbers between 2011 and 2012. This year’s festival will be September 28 and 29-and will include over 150 vendors offering their arts and crafts for sale. For more information on the annual roundup and arts festival, visit http://gfp.sd.gov/state-parks/directory/custer/events/buffalo-roundup.aspx
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