PIERRE, S.D. – South Dakota’s 13 Interstate Information Centers open for the season May 17.
"Information Center travel counselors answer questions and offer travel tips to visitors throughout the summer," said Department of Tourism and State Development Secretary Richard Benda. "Their efforts can really have an impact on our visitors’ experience."
The centers are open seven days a week, 9 a.m.-7 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 will find literature and posters about visitor businesses at the centers. Travel counselors are equipped with computers to help answer visitor’s travel questions. 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 centers at Chamberlain, Spearfish, Valley Springs and Vermillion will remain open through October," said Melissa Bump, Office of Tourism Director. "This is to accommodate the influx of out-of-state hunters and increasing number of visitors 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.