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Travel Counselors Tour South Dakota

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PIERRE, S.D. ¨Forty counselors from South Dakota's 10 Interstate Information Centers tour the state April 30-May 5. The counselors represent all the Information Centers near Chamberlain, New Effington, Salem, Spearfish, Tilford, Valley Springs, Vermillion, Vivian, Wasta and Wilmot. Each year, the South Dakota Office of Tourism holds a training tour for the travel counselors. "This tour equips our counselors with an extensive knowledge and a familiarity of South Dakota," said James Hagen, secretary of the Department of Tourism and State Development. "Our counselors visit one-on-one with travelers, suggesting things to see and do and generally making visitors feel at home. It's important they have a complete understanding of the sites travelers want to see, and this tour accomplishes that." The 2005 Information Center training tour includes stops in northeastern South Dakota and parts of the Black Hills, and begins and ends in Pierre. During the swing through the state, travel counselors visit attractions and stay in hotel/motel properties while gaining valuable knowledge to cross-sell South Dakota to visitors. Some of the tour stops include the Wylie Park in Aberdeen, the Sand Lake Wildlife Refuge near Aberdeen, Fort Sisseton State Park, International Vinegar Museum at Roslyn, Bramble Park Zoo and Redlin Art Center in Watertown, South Dakota Amateur Baseball Hall of Fame in Lake Norden, Ingalls historic sites in De Smet, the South Dakota Art Museum in Brookings, Schade Vineyard in Volga, World's Only Corn Palace in Mitchell, Pioneer Auto Museum in Murdo, Wall Drug in Wall, Mount Rushmore National Memorial near Keystone and Crazy Horse Memorial near Custer. Two other stops include travel literature swap meets, one in Sioux Falls and the other in Rapid City, hosted by the Southeast South Dakota Tourism Association and the Black Hills, Badlands & Lakes Association. The Information Centers open May 14. Go to for a map of South Dakota's Interstate Information Centers.