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South Dakota committee launches hiking challenge
South Dakota committee launches hiking challenge

PIERRE — The U.S. South Dakota 250th Commission has announced the launch of “Walk 250 Miles by 2026,” the first of many events in South Dakota to celebrate the anniversary of statehood in 2026.

“The ultimate goal is to complete 250 miles of outdoor training while visiting historic sites across the state,” said Dr. Ben Jones, director of the South Dakota State Historical Society. “Participants will have from July 4, 2024 to July 4, 2026 to complete the challenge.”

The walking challenge encourages individuals to get outside, exercise, and enjoy the historical significance of their surroundings. Participants track their own miles and submit them through an online form. Participants can win prizes based on miles walked and places visited.

“We have numerous hiking trails throughout the state, and this gives people the opportunity to explore our natural resources while learning about history,” said Nick Harrington, communications manager for South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks. “We love for people to learn about our history and create their own memories in nature.”

The commission has partnered with the City of Deadwood, the Department of Game, Fish & Parks, the Battleship South Dakota Memorial and the South Dakota State Fair to create mile-based challenges for additional prizes. Candidates can also work toward smaller milestones, such as walking 80 miles to honor 80 years since the start of Operation OVERLORD during World War II or walking 150 miles to celebrate Deadwood’s anniversary. Additional challenges will be announced at the start of the program.

For more information, visit the SDSHS website.

By Aurora