Programs & Events
We celebrate literature, promote civil conversation, and tell the stories that define our state. We work with museums, libraries and other cultural, educational and community-based organizations across South Dakota to inspire curiosity and the quest for understanding our place in the world.
Organizations and groups can easily bring humanities programs to their communities with our One Stop Programs (also known as Quick Grants).
Programs, events and book discussions coordinated through the One Stop Programs are listed in our event calendar.
South Dakota Humanities Council awards grants to non-profit organizations that promote humanities in South Dakota through our community project grants, also known as Major Grants.
Major grants allow 501(c)(3) organizations in South Dakota to fill educational and cultural gaps and support communities’ self-identified needs and programs. Major grants also fund discussion (up to $7,000) and research projects (up to $2,500).
WHERE READERS AND WRITERS RENDEZVOUS
As South Dakota’s premier annual literary event, held each fall, the South Dakota Festival of Books draws around 4,000 attendees and showcases more than 60 distinguished authors, scholars, and publishers. Attendees and speakers participate in panels, workshops and readings.
One Book South Dakota and its author are central to the festival. We choose one book each year to promote reading and conversation across the state. Local groups and organizations can host a One Book South Dakota discussion.
Young Readers Initiative
BUILDING ENTHUSIASM IN YOUNG READERS
Our Young Readers Initiative began in 2014 with the goal of stopping summer reading loss and building excitement about literature.
The Young Readers One Book South Dakota drives the Young Readers Initiative through an out-of-school-year book giveaway In the fall, the students meet the Young Readers One Book author and other youth-oriented writers at the Young Readers Festival of Books, which coincides with the Festival of Books.
THE HUMANITIES AND THE EXPERIENCE OF WAR
Standing Together was a 2014 National Endowment for the Humanities initiative directed at veterans’ programming to offer a space for conversations between veterans and civilians.
We partnered with three veterans’ reading and writing groups in Sioux Falls and Brookings. Iraq War veteran Phil Klay appeared at the 2014 Festival of Books. Ron Capps, creator of the Veterans Writing Project, facilitated a two-day writing workshop in Brookings for the veterans’ groups.
ENHANCING UNDERSTANDING OF SOUTH DAKOTA’S INDIGENOUS PEOPLE
SDHC annually provides one-time support for an entity to run a Teachers Institute on American Indian history and culture. We partnered with the South Dakota Department of Education, Division of Learning and Instruction, and a group of teachers to create a one-page document to guide incorporation of the Oceti Sakowin Essential Understandings into the statewide social studies curriculum for 4th and 5th graders.