When it’s raining and pouring and no one is snoring (because your kids no longer take naps), you need a plan to venture out. Here is our list of favorite rainy day activities:
Sanford Lab Homestake Visitor Center, Lead, South Dakota
Embark on a tour that combines mining history and modern science. More info.
Jewel Cave National Park, Custer, South Dakota
A beautiful cave with family friendly tours. More info.
Go Ahead and Get Wet
Evans Plunge, Hot Springs, South Dakota
Warm, natural springs with water slides (and doesn’t smell like sulfur)? Yes, please! More info.
Watiki, Rapid City, South Dakota
An indoor water park that offers that offers a full day of fun. More info.
Black Hills Hiking
Many of the hikes on our Best Black Hills Hikes for Kids are safe – and FUN! – in the rain. Put on your wellies, grab your ran coats and find some of the best muddy puddles.
Go Back in Time
1880 Train, Hill City & Keystone, South Dakota
See the Black Hills on board a vintage steam train. The train departs from both Hill City and Keystone depots. You can chose to do an immediate round trip (with a 15 minute break in between arrival and departure) or you can schedule your arrival and departure times to spend a little time in each city. Parking is free in Hill City, and there is a $5 lot in Keystone. Get your tickets ahead of time – they sell out quickly! More info.
Museum of Geology, Rapid City, South Dakota
What’s not to love about fossilized dinosaurs, sea creatures, glow-in-the-dark rocks and other wonders that are millions of years old? More info.
Saloon 10, Deadwood, South Dakota
With sawdust floors and the chair where Wild Bill Hickock sat when he was shot by Jack McCall, this is a fun, true wild west establishment. Call to see if there will be a reenacement of McCall’s trial. We recommend spending lunch here, but the saloon is actually kid-friendly until 8:00 p.m. each night.
Go Make Something
The Dahl Arts Center in Rapid City is great for observing local art, but did you know that it also has a kid-friendly space for kids to create their own art (including a great selection of costumes and a stage to perform on). It is FREE to use the creative space, but you are welcome to give a donation in their donation box.
Go Where the Kids Are
Jump Craze lets kids jump around and go crazy.
Mainstreet Square has the “kids loop:” Mitzi’s Books, Who’s Toy House, and Silver Lining Creamery Ice Cream. The added benefit of the “kids loop” is that you can probably find a book or a toy for under $10 that keeps the kids entertained for the rest of the day. When it’s not raining, there is a free fountain park just outside and a nice grassy area to watch the kids run through the fountains.
Elks Movie Theater is a discount movie theater with great snack stand prices. Locals can buy a movie pass good for one movie a week (the Elks picks the movie) all summer long for $10.