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Let's Go Outside . . .


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painted lady

Painted Lady photo by Doug Backlund,

School Groups in Pierre Help with the Garden


Capital City Children's Chorus

The Capital City Children's Chorus from Pierre, SD, will help promote the Prairie Butterfly Garden and Earth Day when they sing the National Anthem at a Boston Red Sox home game on April 22nd.

Click here for photos and more details of their trip.


Classrooms Grow Plants for the Garden

Wow - we have had a great response from the schools wanting to help with the garden. At last count, 28 classrooms (over 500 students) from Pierre and Fort Pierre schools have taken up the challenge to plant annual seeds (marigolds, zinnias, cosmos, and dill), watch them grow in the classroom, and then help plant them in the butterfly garden.

Click here for photos and more details.


Decorative Painting for the Garden

The flowers and butterflies will be beautiful, but we couldn't stop there. Charlene "Charlie" Bessken is also a decorative painter and visited 12 classrooms to teach a simple painting technique and have the kids create some artwork for the garden. They will be making the garden unique with paintings on the plant identification tags, informational signs, and rocks. The art will go into the garden in June 2013 after all the plants are planted.

Click here for photos and more details.




Younger kids - here is a link to lots of butterfly coloring pages:






Where is the Garden?

Oahe-Downstream Location Map

Fort Pierre, South Dakota


The Garden is located south of the parking lot by the Visitor Center. A large kiosk is at the edge of the trail.




This project was made possible with a grant from the USFWS Connecting People with Nature - Let's Get Outside fund.

lets go outside

An additional small grant came from the South Dakota Chapter of The Wildlife Society.


USFWS couldn't do this alone - many thanks go to the staff of South Dakota Game Fish & Parks for their participation during all aspects of the project -

Pat Buscher
Eileen Dowd Stukel
Maggie Lindsey
Dave Ode
Ryan Raynor
Pat Thompson


The Activity Guide by Jen Fowler was made possible through the SDGFP Wildlife Division Small Grants Program.

Thanks go to the many students that participated in classroom activities to help grow plants and decorate the garden.

Thanks to Colleen Thompson for helping coordinate activities at the garden.

A big Thank You to all the volunteers who will help plant the perennials June 1 and 2.

Photos have been provided by:
Doug Backlund and Gary Marrone

Thanks to Gary Marrone for his inspiration to getting all of us interested in butterflies. Look for his book Field Guide to Butterflies of South Dakota, published in 2002.



Last updated: March 24, 2014

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