View of the First Nations Sculpture Garden being planned for Rapid City, SD. Source:

Rapid City Sculpture Garden Will Celebrate 4 Native Luminaries


In Rapid City, SD, a sculpture garden paying tribute to Native Americans is moving closer to becoming a reality, according to a Native Sun News report posted to

Many Natives will tell you that Rapid City is a town with a race problem. Rapid City racism most recently reared its head in a January 24th incident at a hockey game, but those who know the city can describe a history of episodes that are just as bad, or worse.

RELATED: Racist City, S.D.: Life is Violent, and Often Deadly in Rapid City

The issue is on everyone's minds, including Mayor Sam Kooiker, who said at a March 19 discussion at the Dahl Fine Arts Center that "The reason I am so passionate about this project is that there has been so much negativity in our community over the years and this focus is not on the conflicts. ... There’s been so much pain that’s been represented over the last 140 years and this project represents the positive."

The First Nations Sculpture Garden is still securing funding, but organizers plan to begin installing it in Halley Park in 2016. It will include busts of Charles Eastman, Vine Deloria Jr., Oscar Howe and Nicholas Black Elk. The bronze castings will be based on smaller works created by Lakota sculptor Marilyn Wounded Head. 

The project's official site is; to follow the progress on Facebook, visit

Click the images below to see them at full size:

Site Plan for First Nations Sculpture Park in Rapid City, SD.

Aerial view of First Nations Sculpture Park in Rapid City, SD.

View across the First Nations Sculpture Park in Rapid City, SD.

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