Got up in Faith, SD and met my friend, Wade, for a coffee at the local shop in town. Had a good visit then I took off for Rapid City to hang out for the day. The drive south through central South Dakota was beautiful today. Sun shining, some puffy white clouds, clear and warm and the vistas were fantastic. Rolling green hills in every direction. Open and not many structures or trees and that’s in big part why it’s so beautiful.
Got down to Rapid City, SD and stopped in for lunch at a favorite of mine, the Firehouse Brewing Company. They are housed in a downtown old brick firehouse building. Good food and good beer. I sat at the bar since I was by myself and enjoyed a nice lunch break.
I toured a favorite gift shop that’s too difficult to describe. Wonderful Native American art and gifts, clothing, jewelry and an art gallery. Prairie Edge Trading Co. is a must visit if you’re passing through Rapid. I relaxed outside for a bit reading my book and watching kids play in the downtown splash pad park. Felt good in the shade and plenty hot in the sun. They kids were sure having fun as it was a little hard to concentrate over the squeals of joy each time the jets of water exploded from the ground.
I checked prices on hotels and although it was more expensive I chose to stay downtown at the historic Alex Johnson hotel. It’s a very cool old hotel with polish and charm. I’ve stayed there before and wanted to again. I inquired and asked for best price and bit the bullet and stayed there. Here are a few photos of the place.
I checked in to my room, took a break, then headed by vehicle about 2 miles away to check out the kitschy “Dinosaur Park” that’s been up the winding hill from downtown since the Depression – it’s a WPA built project. I was given a neat, old postcard, by my sister, from this spot that was sent to someone in 1952. It’s on the wall of my workshop at home. I asked Elizabeth and she nicely went over to the shop and took a photo of the postcard for me so I could see if I could replicate the image. The park is on top of a significant hill with overlooks on two sides down into Rapid. It consists of a half dozen or so concrete dinosaurs styled in positions as they thought best in the 1930’s. Pretty neat. Take a look at my effort to capture the old postcard in todays light.
Went out for a meal then walked to my favorite ice cream shop in town; Armadillos Ice Cream. I was almost too late as I showed up at 9:51pm and they were preparing to close at 10! Thank goodness I made it.