PIERRE, S.D. – South Dakota’s 10 Interstate Information Centers open for the season May 12.
“Information Center travel counselors answer questions for and offer travel tips to thousands of visitors throughout the summer,” said Billie Jo Waara, Director of the Office of Tourism. “Their efforts throughout the peak tourism season can really have an impact on our visitors’ experience.”
The centers are open seven days a week, 8 a.m.-6 p.m. They are located along Interstates 29 and 90 near Chamberlain, New Effington, Salem, Spearfish, Tilford, Valley Springs, Vermillion, Vivian, Wasta, and Wilmot.
Visitors also will find literature and posters about visitor businesses at the centers. The Department of Transportation maintains kiosks at each center with road and weather information that are accessible 24 hours a day, year-round.
While the other centers close in mid-September, the four entry centers and the Lewis and Clark Information Center near Chamberlain will remain open through October. This is to accommodate the influx of out-of-state hunters during the fall season, as well as the increasing number of visitors to South Dakota during the fall season.
Travel counselors at the Interstate Information Centers are tested on their South Dakota knowledge prior to being hired and participate in an extensive training session that introduces them to visitor destinations across the state.
The Interstate Information Center travel counselors are hired by the South Dakota Office of Tourism. Efforts of the Information Centers and their staff are part of Goal 1 of the 2010 initiative to double visitor spending in South Dakota. The Office of Tourism serves under the direction of Richard Benda, Secretary of the Department of Tourism and State Development.