Campground Closure Concerns Festival Goers

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June 18, 2012 by   - () Leave a Comment

Click here to watch a video courtesy of KDLT-TV, Sioux Falls, S.D.

Quarry Days is time to celebrate the history of Dell Rapids, S.D., and the surrounding area, but for some the experience hasn't always been a good one.

Scott Fiegen, mayor of Dell Rapids, said, "We had some personal property damage. We had some people come to the city council after that happened and told us what happened to their camper and the fact that they would never come camp at Dell Rapids again. And then last year, we had underage drinking out there; the partying was getting out of hand. They were slapping cars as they were driving through the parking area."

So this year's celebration, scheduled for June 22-24, will be a little different.

The city council unanimously voted to close the campground to camping where Quarry Days takes place for the weekend.

A decision that has many shocked and others planning to boycott the festival.

Robert Heim of Dell Rapids said, "With the events going on in the evening, it would be nice to stay in town. For one, you don’t have to drive home. You’re right there in town. So yeah I've heard people say they are upset they can't camp during Quarry Days.”

But not being able to stay there isn't the only issue. Small businesses in the area are worried they are going to take a hard hit.

Tom and Jaime Herding, who own the Dutch Inn right next to the campground, said Quarry Days brings in around 1,500 people each year. But with the campground closed, they're worried they will lose a lot of that business.

This year the city council is expecting around 400 people to partake in the festivities, that will include a baseball game and a concert, but no camping. So the question is, how many people will show up?

For now the turnout will remain a question until Quarry Days gets underway.

"Certain people maybe the cause of the issues, a year or two ago go by, and maybe they move on and grow up … you never know. It's kind of hard to say what the council will do next year,” said Fiegen.

There are events ranging from a baseball game and street dance to a golf tournament and parade. Kory and the Fireflies will also be playing at the festival on Friday.

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