Law School Task Force Recommends Hybrid Plan, Additional Funding


The Law School Task Force voted Friday to recommend to President James W. Abbott a hybrid plan to establish new programming options online and in Sioux Falls while keeping the existing School of Law on the University of South Dakota campus in Vermillion.

The task force also voted unanimously to recommend an increase in funding of at least $600,000 a year for programming at the law school.

The task force based its evaluation on the testimony it received in two previous meetings from students, faculty, law school staff, alumni, community members, lawyers from around the state and outside experts and consultants.

USD President James W. Abbott appointed the task force earlier this year to consider whether relocating the state’s only law school to Sioux Falls would be in the best interest of the students, the university, and the state of South Dakota.

Rep. Mark Mickelson, R-Sioux Falls, chaired the task force.

The task force voted to recommend seeking private funding for scholarships and to recommend offering in-state tuition rates to select out-of-state candidates. The task force concluded with recommending the establishment of an ongoing advisory council to continue to consider ways to improve the law school.

The USD School of Law remains a best value law school and was recently ranked third in least indebted graduates. The school educates most of the state’s lawyers and judges, filling spots in private law firms and in public legal practice.

The Thrill of Coming Home Never Changes


Fall is when Canada geese return to warmer climates and college graduates to their alma mater.

Homecoming is a week of alumni recognition, parades, football games, fun and memories.

The forerunner of Hobo Day at South Dakota State University in Brookings was a nightshirt parade.

Men dressed in nightshirts and women dressed in sheets gathered around a bonfire to rouse enthusiasm for a football game against Dakota Wesleyan the next day, according to “The College on the Hill” by Amy Dunkle with V.J. Smith. Led by the band, students carrying torches wound their way through town to the train station to meet the incoming football team. The students met with disappointment, as the Wesleyan football team was delayed and did not arrive until the following morning. State won the football game.

College authorities deemed it inappropriate for women students to roam the streets of Brookings draped in sheets, and suggested there be one great event rather than nightshirt parades.

According to information from the Hobo Day Committee, the biggest one-day event in the Dakotas started with several students eating ice cream at a local drug store and talking about ways to rescue a faltering student spirit. A student by the name of R. Adams Dutcher brought up a concept that had failed at the University of Missouri. This idea that caught fire at SDSU was one in which men dressed as hoboes and the women as American Indians. Thus, Hobo Day came into existence.

In 1939, Flandreau farmer Fred Weigel gave the Students’ Association a 1912 Model T Ford with the understanding that it appear each year in the Hobo Day parade. It has. The year the car was made was the same year the Hobo Day tradition began.

Robert Slagle was instrumental in starting homecoming at SDSU and the University of South Dakota. Slagle served as president of SDSU from 1906 to 1914, and took the concept of Hobo Days with him when he became president of USD in 1914.

“When he came to USD one of the things he wanted to do was strengthen the relationship between the university and the community. He suggested an event called South Dakota Day,” said Kersten Johnson of Pierre, who served as executive director of the USD Alumni Association from 2008 to 2016.

South Dakota Day is now called Dakota Days or D-Days.

Alumni achievement awards, open houses at different colleges, a reunion of marching band members, decorating fraternities and sororities, community service projects, a parade and football game are all part of D-Days activities. Artists have exhibits in the Gallery of Fine Arts.

The crowning of a homecoming queen, Miss Dakota, has been part of homecoming events since its beginning. In 1986, Karl Adam was crowned the first Dakota Day king, Mr. Dakota. The senior political science major from Pierre was the son of a Miss Dakota, Pat (Mickelson) Adam.

Al Neuharth, the founder of USA Today and The Freedom Forum, was one alumnus who came back to USD during Dakota Days.
“The whole crux of the week is for alumni to come back and give lectures and meet students and professors,” Johnson said. “They can retrace their steps on the campus they knew and the campus that has evolved. It’s amazing how transformative those four years are in a person’s lifetime. The thrill of coming home never changes.”

SDSU’s homecoming also played a role in the start of homecoming at Northern State University in 1916. According to an article in the Aberdeen American News by Cara Ball, Northern student Charles Fleischman and Aberdeen businessman Charles Creed reasoned that if SDSU could have Hobo Day, Northern could have Gypsy Day. Creed is credited with naming the event when gypsies came through his cigar store.

In 1919, Gypsy Day activities took place in May after being postponed due to the influenza epidemic at the beginning of the school year. Gypsy Day activities that year included the crowning of a queen, parade, baseball game, sports carnival, outdoor dinner and the presentation of the musical comedy “The Gypsy Rover.”

The Gypsy Day parade is called “The largest parade in South Dakota.” People crowd the parade route whether it’s raining, snowing or 90 degrees.

For eight years at Black Hills State University in Spearfish, homecomings were celebrated under such names as Gypsy Day, Pioneer Day and Paha Sapa Day. The Spearfish Normal football team was known only as the Normal team. That changed in 1928.
In “The Friendly College: The First 100 Years of Black Hills State College 1883-1983,” BHSU band director Mark Richmond explained the origin of the college’s homecoming.

In 1927, the Spearfish Normal football team played its archrival, the Hardrockers from the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology. The Normal football players were wearing long yellow coats over their uniforms.

One of the coeds, said to be Bessie Kennedy, yelled, “Go, you yellow jackets, go!” The cry was taken up by other fans. The team responded to the cheering, went after the Hardrockers like yellow jackets after someone who had disturbed their nest, and won the game.

The name Yellow Jackets became associated with BHSU athletic teams. BHSU held its first Swarm Day in the fall of 1928.
Richmond explained that BHSU’s homecoming was called Swarm Day because bees swarm and yellow jackets have similarities with bees. “So why should not old grads and other friends swarm back to BHSC every homecoming?” he is quoted as saying.
Festivities at Swarm Days include a hike up to the “H” on Lookout Mountain, an alumni awards lunch, a hall of fame banquet, coronation of a king and queen, burning of the “BH,” parade, tailgate social and football game.

The first homecoming at Eastern State Teachers College in Madison, now Dakota State University, took place in October 1922. Among the Pioneer Day activities were a barbeque, parade and the crowning of a homecoming queen, Gladys Meade of Fedora. The name of the homecoming celebration has changed over the years to Eastern Frontier Day, Eastern Day, Homecoming, Tutor Day and, in the 1970s, to the current Trojan Days.

Eastern Day on Oct. 19, 1926, was recorded in a documentary film staged by Eastern State Teachers College about the early history of South Dakota and the life of Gen. William Henry Harrison Beadle in South Dakota. The documentary “Dacotah” was the first of its kind filmed in the United States.

“To me, events like Trojan Days are important because they served to promote collegiality among university staff and students,” said Ryan Burdge, archivist at the Karl Mundt Library at DSU. “These days when our enrollment is increasingly online-only students, and many staff and faculty are commuters or telecommuters, it is important that events like these exist to preserve a notion of community that connects with our past.”

Rapid City residents had spy glasses, opera glasses and binoculars to view activities taking place on Cowboy Hill, a large slope on the west side of the city, on Oct. 5, 1912.

South Dakota School of Mines & Technology President Dr. Cleophas O’Harra had given students a holiday and, under the supervision of faculty, 65 young men were using stones to build an immense “M” on Cowboy Hill. At 112 ½ by 67 feet, it was hailed as the largest letter in South Dakota, according to “Centennial: An Illustrated History 1885-1985 South Dakota School of Mines and Technology.”

The rocks were whitewashed and it was said that the white M could be seen from 12 miles away.

The M-Day climb to the top of Cowboy Hill became an annual event. A morning of whitewashing the rocks and burning or pulling the weeds was followed by picnicking and dancing. Concrete later replaced the rocks. Football only became part of the tradition years later.

In 1934, mathematics professor Guy March called for a meeting of Mines graduates at his home in Rapid City. At that meeting the Alumni Association was reactivated and officers were elected. In October 1934, the first edition of The Hardrock alumni newspaper was published. It announced the forming of the Alumni Association and gave information on the first homecoming.
The Hardrock reported, “The annual Homecoming Day, ‘M’ day, will be the one big event each year. This year there was a total registration of over 100 alumni and former students.”

The day featured a free meal, the climbing of Cowboy Hill, a parade and a banquet at the Alex Johnson Hotel.

In 1936, M-Day was a day unto itself; the actual homecoming took place on Oct. 10. Homecoming activities began with an alumni meeting at the Alex Johnson Hotel and was followed by a homecoming parade with 75 decorated floats and cars going through downtown Rapid City.

At the 1960 homecoming, March reported that “over one-fourth of the living alumni attended … must be some kind of record.”
The first M-Day Queen was chosen in 1958, and was a high school student, Phyllis Gramm of Roscoe. It wouldn’t be until 1962 that an SDSM&T coed would reign over homecoming activities, when freshman Cheryl Harrelson was crowned M-Day Queen. Cindy Davies of the Devereaux Library at Mines explained that Mines had few women students until the 1960s. In those years, various campus organizations sponsored queen candidates. The candidates were wives of students, nursing students from the hospital, sisters of students and others.

Rocker Days at Mines combines homecoming activities with other traditions, including the M-Hill climb, the M-Day parade and – of course – football.

This moment in South Dakota history is provided by the South Dakota Historical Society Foundation, the nonprofit fundraising partner of the South Dakota State Historical Society at the Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre. Find us on the web at Contact us at to submit a story idea.

Dance Team Wins First

dance at northwesterb

Winner High School competitive dance team won first place at Northwestern on Sept. 25. Winner had three teams competing.

“It was good to see new teams and judges we have not had at previous competitions,” said coach Cyndy DeMers.

“We will take their scores and comments and continue to work on areas that we need improvement,” added the coach.

Middle School Falls Short at State Softball

middle school softball team

Winner middle school fall softball team participated in the middle school state tournament Oct. 1 in Sioux Falls.

Winner fell short in the first game as they were defeated by Yankton 4-3.

Melanie Brozik had the only hit for the game.

The Winner girls had 6 walks.

Winner then faced West Central and fell short again 6-5.

Kelbi Meiners had 2 hits including a triple and two RBI’s. Libbie Petersek, Josey Kludt and Hattie Hespe each had 2 hits with Kludt and Hespe each having 1 RBI.

Aleya Miller, Melanie Brozik and Marissa Meiners each had 1 hit and Brozik drove in 1 run.

Winner Middle School ended the season with a 5-5 record.

The Animal Clinic and the Insurance Center sponsored the middle school team.

High School Softball Team Plays in State Tournament

state softball

Winner high school softball team played in the state fall softball tournament this weekend in Sioux Falls. Winner played all of its games on Saturday.

In the first game, Winner lost to Madison 10-0.

Leading hitters were Kenndal Turnquist, 1 hit, Emmy Kaiser, 2 hits, Mary Calhoon, 2 hits, Yvonne Morana, 1 hit.

Turnquist was the losing pitcher.

In the second game, Winner defeated Sturgis 16-15 in extra innings.

Riley McClanahan was the winning pitcher.

Leading hitters were Elisabeth Duffy, 3 hits; Turnquist and McClanahan, 4 hits each; Elanie Old Lodge, 3 hits; Delanie Nelson, 1 hit and Jaynee Gregg 1 hit, Mary Calhoon, 3 hits, Ronae Klein, 2 hits and Haley Hollenbeck, 1 hit.

In the third game, Pierre defeated Winner 10-3 in the double elimination state tournament.

Duffy was the losing pitcher.

Leading hitters were Turnquist, 2 hits, McClanahan and Old Lodge 1 hit each; Emmy Kaiser, 2 hits.

The season is over for the high school fall softball team.

High School Parade Winners

parade senior float riders

Winners have been named in the Winner High School homecoming parade on Friday.

Hollywood Homecoming was the parade theme.

Winners include:

Best use of theme—Class of 2021

Best decorated—Class of 2021

Most creative—class of 2020

Best business entry—Winner Regional Healthcare Center

Most appropriate to homecoming—City of Winner

Best class reunion entry–1962

Colome Parade Winners

colome sophomore float

Winners have been chose from the entries in the Colome High School homecoming parade.

Results include:

K-3, Wood—1. Kindergarten, 2. First grade, 3. Third grade

4-8th grade—1. Sixth grade, 2. Fifth grade, 3 fourth grade

9-12—1. 10th grade, 2. 11th grade, 3. 9th grade

Public winner—Class of 1977

Eight Chosen for All-State Chorus

all state chorus

Eight Winner High School students have been selected for all-state chorus.

The all-state members are Shelby Scott, soprano; Sadie Woods, soprano; Mary Calhoon, alto; Ronae Klein, alto; Emmy Kaiser, tenor; Atlas Willuweit, tenor; Asher Kraft and Elijah Blare, both bass.

The alternates are Shannon Calhoon, Meagan Blare and Kayla Natoli.

Danielle Catoe is the director of the WHS chorus.

The students will spend the weekend of Oct. 27-28 in Sioux Falls rehearing for the concert which will be Oct. 28 at the Denny Sanford Premier Center.

Students had to go through an audition process to be selected.

The guest conductor will be Tim Seelig of San Francisco, Calif. He is a conductor, singer and motivational speaker.

Dr. Seelig holds four degrees including the doctor of musical arts and the diploma from the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria. He has authored seven books on choral technique.

Warriors Improve to 5-1

fb phillip jorgensen

Of all the games a football team plays during a season, the homecoming game is one that stands out in every player’s mind.

On a beautiful Friday night, the Winner Warriors made those memories as they defeated the Chamberlain Cubs 36-13.

After Warrior Ty Bolton and princess Macie Ferwerda lit the olympic torch that burned though the game, the Warriors got down to business.

Winner played an excellent first half scoring 8 points in the first quarter and adding 20 more in the second quarter.

The Warriors opened the game with a nice drive capped off by Matt Smither’s 7-yard touchdown run. The two-point conversion by Riley Calhoon was good and Winner was up 8-0.

Three touchdowns in the second quarter gave winner a 28-7 lead at the half.

Calhoon scored on a 19 yard run, Trevor Peters scored on a 4 yard run and right before the half Smither scored his second TD on a 1-yard plunge.

“We played a good first half as we moved the ball and got ourselves in good situations,” said coach Dan Aaker.

“The one breakdown was the Cubs kickoff return that put Chamberlain in good field position. The Warriors were hoping to hold off the Cubs but they punched the ball in for a score.

However, Winner came right back with a touchdown. “That was a nice drive that ate up the clock and we were able to score right before the half,” explained the coach.

Both teams were scoreless in the third quarter. Aaker noted sometimes it seems the teams looses focus at times. “On two of our drives we did not stay on schedule and had a mental breakdown.”

The Warrior ended up giving Chamberlain another scored in the fourth quarter as Isaac Hawk scored on a 5 yard run.

With 5:36 left in the game, Winner responded with its final touchdown as quarterback Carter Brickman scored on a 1-yard keeper.

The Warriors had 375 yards of total offense with 327 of those yards coming via the rush.

In passing, Brickman was 4-5 for 48 yards.

The offense was led by Phillip Jorgensen with 105 yards followed by Calhoon with 71 yards, Peters, 60 yards and Matt Smither with 55 yards.

Leading tacklers were Calhoon with 7, Levi McClanahan with 5, Shea Connot, 4; Ty Bolton and Matt Smither with 3 each.

Aaker said one of the keys of this game is that the team must maintain its focus for 48 minutes. “At times we lost our focus and that cannot happen as the games get bigger. I know our guys know that,” said Aaker.

The Warriors will host Wagner on Friday night and this will be senior night.

Aaker says Wagner is a team similar to Chamberlain.

“Offensively we have to move the ball. This is a big week for us and we need to focus and play a consistent game.”

There are only two games left in the regular season. This Friday is the final home game before the playoffs and then on Oct. 13 the Warriors travel to Wessington Springs-Woonsocket.

Cowboys Win Hard Fought Battle

kolton salonen

Chase Dufek scored the winning touchdown with five minutes left in the game to give the Colome Cowboys a 20-14 homecoming victory over Scotland on Friday.

Dufek scored on a 19 yard run and Wyatt Cahoy had the two point conversion.

Dufek opened the scoring for Colome on a 17 yard run.

Kolton Salonen scored on a 13 yard pass from Layton Thieman.

Colome led 12-0 at the half however in the third quarter Scotland took the lead 14-12.

The Cowboys retook the lead at the end of the game on Dufek’s run.

Colome had 252 yards of total offense and Dufek had 138 yards on 17 carries.

On defense, Salonen had 8 tackles and a sack. Cahoy had 11 tackles.

“We came out flat,” said coach Ben Connot. “We need to be a lot better when we play this week.”

The Cowboys, 6-0, will host Corsica- Stickney in a 7 p.m. game on Friday.