Native American Day to be observed Oct. 11

Crazy Horse Memorial will host its annual Native American Day celebration Monday, Oct. 11. The event will feature hands-on activities, a Native American Day program (including the announcement of this year's Educator of the Year award) as well as Native American performances.
South Dakota was the first state to officially celebrate Native American Day on the second Monday in October annually. Since 1990. South Dakota and Vermont (which celebrates Indigenous Peoples’ Day) are the only states to practice non-observance of the federal holiday of Columbus Day.
The South Dakota Legislature established Native American Day at the urging of then-S.D. Gov. George S. Mickelson. The transformed holiday was a result of correspondence between the editor of Indian Country Today Tim Giago and the governor. Giago, an Oglala Lakota from Pine Ridge Reservation, had written a column in the Lakota Times expressing the need for change. In addition to the new holiday, Mickelson declared 1990 as a Year of Reconciliation, the 100th anniversary of the Wounded Knee Massacre, and called for the first Native American Day observance to be held at Crazy Horse Memorial®. More than 1,200 people attended that first celebration Oct. 8, 1990.
This year his son, Mark Mickelson, will be the honored guest speaker at the morning's program.
“We can’t turn back the clock,” Gov. Mickelson said. “We can only turn to the future together. What we can do as leaders, both Native American and white, is teach others that we can change attitudes.”
Hands-on activities will take place throughout the complex from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Native American Day program begins at 10 a.m. and free buffalo stew will be available following the program, courtesy of Custer State Park and Korczak’s Heritage, Inc. Emmy-award winning Native American flute player Jonah Littlesunday (Diné) will perform at 1:30 p.m. and Kevin Locke (Standing Rock Lakota) will perform that day as well.

User login