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Rapid City, SD

Nestled on the eastern slope of South Dakota's Black Hills, Rapid City is the gateway to some of America's scenic treasures--Mount Rushmore, Devil's Tower and the Badlands--and the city itself is split by the Dakota Hogback. Although relatively small in size (population 64,000), Rapid City's popularity with tourists has led to the development of an arts community rivaling that of much larger cities. The annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally draws thousands of Harley-Davidson motorcycle enthusiasts to Rapid City every summer.


Rapid City has a very diverse economy. The city's roots are in agriculture, mining and logging, all of which remain central to its economy today. However, over time, manufacturing has become an increasingly important source of revenue, with the city's central location making it an important transportation hub, particularly for trucking.

A high percentage of Rapid City's workforce is also employed in government services, with Ellsworth Air Force Base being a major employer.

Additionally, in recent years, tourism has developed into a major part of Rapid City's economy, due to the popularity of the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and the proximity of Mount Rushmore and other national parks which bring thousands of tourists to the city every summer.

Some of the most common industries for the residents of Rapid City include education, health and social services, retail trade, recreation, and accommodation and food services. Some of the major employers include Rapid City Regional Hospital, Black Hills Corporation and Sanmina-Sci Corp.


Downtown Rapid City's shopping district preserves a strip of late 19th and early 20th century buildings, with an eclectic mix of shopping and dining. In a nod to Mount Rushmore, life-sized statues of US presidents are positioned around downtown. The Dahl Art Center downtown shows art and hosts events. To the west of downtown, the West Boulevard Historic District has some fine examples of old homes. The Rushmore Mall on the north side of town is a center for department-store shopping.






Rapid City is served by The Rapid City Journal, a daily newspaper with a circulation of roughly 30,000.

Radio stations in Rapid City include:

All of the major television networks broadcast from Rapid City. Local stations include:


Rapid City is home to a branch of the National American University as well as the Western Dakota Technical Institute. The South Dakota School of Mines and Technology is also located in the city.


Rapid City is home to the Rapid City Rush, a minor league hockey team housed in the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center.

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