The Pierre-Fort Pierre Exchange Club is displaying the US and South Dakota flags across the Missouri River Bridge between Fort Pierre and Pierre in observance of Native Americans’ Day today (Oct. 12).
South Dakota Intrastate Pipeline Company is sponsoring the display for this observance.
Former South Dakota Gov. George S. Mickelson recommended the change to Native Americans’ Day in 1990 as part of his “Year of Reconciliation” efforts. Native American tribes and others say celebrating Italian explorer Christopher Columbus ignores the effect the European arrival in the Americas had on the native peoples. They suffered violence, disease, enslavement, racism and exploitation at the hands of the settlers.
Since 2006, the Exchange Club has consistently posted flags across the bridge for various holidays and other special occasions. If you are a local business owner who would like to participate in this display of Americanism and Community, please contact Scott Rounds with the Pierre-Fort Pierre Exchange Club at 280-9611. A one year contract to have the flags posted on the various holidays in front of your business is $35.
The Pierre-Fort Pierre Exchange Club meets Mondays at noon at the Ramkota.