Downtown Rapid City, South Dakota

After taking it easy during our last day at our campsite in Three Flags RV Park in Black Hawk, South Dakota, we decided to go out to dinner and check out downtown nearby Rapid City.

Much smaller than the cities we are used to, Rapid City still appears to have a sizable downtown. There are no skyscrapers, but still lots of buildings with offices, shops, bars and restaurants. While we were there, the city was having their weekly “Summer Nights” program, where they have live music, vendors and activities for children lining the downtown streets and pavilions. It was a vibrant, summery atmosphere that we were glad to see!

We went to dinner at the Firehouse Brewing Company, which is also affiliated with a winery next door, both of which offer free daily tours, but which we did not participate in this time. We had heard about this microbrewery due to several billboards paired with old firetrucks on their side on the side of Route 90 – as much as we sometimes wished there weren’t so many billboard advertisements littering the scenery out here, it clearly is very effective advertising!

Rapid City 1

The Firehouse Brewing Company had a great facade of an old firehouse and inside, a pub-like atmosphere with firehouse memorabilia lining the walls. We tried the Bell Tower Lager and Supercharged IPA. The lager was very light and refreshing – perfect for a hot summer day like this one where it topped out at 97 degrees. The IPA was very sweet and creamy with a distinct taste like none other we had ever tried.

Rapid city 2

The food we tried was even better – I ordered a brisket sandwich myself. Back home, the brisket I typically get is shredded and smothered in some sort of barbecue sauce. Don’t get me wrong, I love it this way, but this brisket, served in extremely tender, melt in your mouth strips on a bun with fried onions and my choice of four different house sauces on the side was absolutely delicious. John ordered a Reuben, which was also very good. Seeing steer on the side of the road everywhere you go, one would expect the beef out here to be good and they are certainly living up to our expectations so far!

Rapid City 6

Around town, we also discovered the statues of every United States President, including my very distant cousin, Franklin Pierce.

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Katie with cousin Franklin Pierce on the streets of Rapid City

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Other Presidential photo ops – JFK and the charming Martin Van Buren

After this, we returned to the campsite to clean up a bit and read outside before heading out for Devil’s Tower in the morning.

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