Courier October Courier - Page 36

COMPASS COMPILED BY KENDALL FLETCHER Good things in the Badlands North Dakota is home to a plethora of attractions for history lovers, ranging from trails to national parks, which can be explored on The North Dakota Heritage and Heroes Tour. “North Dakota is where you can retrace the footsteps of Lewis, Clark, Sakakawea, Sitting Bull, Theodore Roosevelt, Sheheke and George Custer,” says Deanne Cunningham, group travel marketing manager with North Dakota Tourism Division. If travelers choose to begin the tour in the Bismarck- Mandan area, they can make a stop at Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park and see, along the river, the earth lodges of a village that was home to a thriving Mandan Indian popula- tion in the mid-1600s. They can tour the home of George and Libbie Custer; it was from there the general and his 7th Cavalry rode into the Battle of the Little Bighorn. Found in Washburn are the Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center; Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site, the ruins of an ancient Indian village; and a museum pre- serving the heritage of the Plains Indians. Also included on the tour is Lake Sakakawea, the larg- est lake in North Dakota, named from the young Native American woman who accompanied Lewis and Clark on their journey. For more information on the tour and additional North Dakota sites, contact Cunningham at Dancers at Knife River decunningham@nd.gov or Indian Villages visit ndtourism.com. Landscapes of fossil beds, historical mountainside carvings and unique wildlife are some of the features groups can visit in the Black Hills and Badlands of South Dakota. The buttes, pinnacles and spires of the Badlands were formed millions of years ago by sediment deposition and erosion. Badlands National Park is spread across 244,000 acres, where Mount Rushmore visitors can see the astounding scenery and learn about the various plants and animals that inhabit the area. “Badlands National Park is a beautiful moonscape-looking scenic drive. There are many scenic overlooks and walks and hikes for the adventurous,” says Michelle Thomson, president and CEO of Black Hills & Badlands Tourism Association. Tucked in the Black Hills is Mount Rushmore National Memorial, a large-scale mountain sculpture of four former U.S. presidents. Groups can take an audio tour and experi- ence the nightly lighting ceremony in the summer. The Crazy Horse Memorial, carved from pegmatite granite on a mountain that stands over 6,500 feet tall, is another strik- ing sculpture in the heart of the Black Hills. The entire carv- ing, which is 563 feet high and depicts Lakota warrior Crazy Horse, is the world’s largest mountain carving in progress. Other attractions include Devils Tower National Monument, Black Hills Gold Factory Tour and Custer State Park, where visitors can take Buffalo Jeep Safari tours to see herds of South Dakota’s numerous buffalo. For more information, contact Michelle Thomson at michelle@ blackhillsbadlands.com or visit blackhillsbadlands.com. A heap of history in North Dakota Zip lining and festivals and dining, oh my! Manhattan, Kansas, called “The Little Apple,” is a small city with a big appetite and lots of cool things to do. “Downtown Manhattan has fabulously unique destinations that are unparalleled,” says Michael Goens, communica- tions coordinator for the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce. “Harry’s M