Category Archives: South Dakota

Water Tower Wednesday – The Granite Water Tower of Dell Rapids


I found this beauty back in August during a trip to South Dakota for a family reunion. The old water tower was built in 1894 out of Sioux quartzite, a locally quarried stone. The forty five foot tower was operational until 1960 until replaced by a new tower. The old tower is now on the National Register of Historic Places. It looked pretty sturdy and well maintained to me for a 119 year old water tower. I wouldn’t be surprised if it doesn’t last another 119 years. The water tank was placed at the top of the tower. There is more information here.

As a bonus, the water tower has its own geocache, “Dell Rapids Historic Series: Wasser Werks.”
The people in the photograph above from left to right are my Sister Ellen, my Uncle Glenn, who was on his very first geocaching hunt, and the world’s greatest BIL Irv. And yes, we found the cache. Or rather Irv found it.

Thanks to Daryl of Out and About in New York City about getting me interested in Water Towers. She has a regular feature called Water Tower Wednesday that I borrow every now and then.

Skywatch Friday – South Dakota Sunrise

Flandreau Sunrise.jpg

Early morning sunrise on my drive out of Flandreau, South Dakota. I had already said my goodbyes to the family the night before and I was off on my 670 mile drive back to Tulsa via South Dakota, Iowa, Nebraska, and Kansas. I caught this sight in my rear view mirror so I had to stop and take a picture on the rise out of the Big Sioux River Valley.

Skywatch Friday

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Inspired Sunday – Sioux Valley Baptist Church

Last week I wasn’t blogging, I drove to South Dakota to attend the family reunion of my Dad’s side of the family.

Sioux Valley Baptist Church

A traditional part of the reunion is to attend the service at Sioux Valley Baptist Church near Del Rapids. The church is a humble very honest and impeccably maintained building on a dirt road. The first service was held Thanksgiving Day 1888 and it has been going strong ever since.

(Photo from

The church was built by a group of Scandanavian Immigrants. The man pictured above, my Great Great Grandfather Nels Norgaard donated the acre of land that the church is built on. And that is why the Norgaard clain attends church service at the church before the picnic in Del Rapids.


The service was well attended and the hospitality was warm. The pastor, Rita Weber introduced herself and welcomed everybody individually before the service. I got the impression that she does that every service. Turns out that there was a man in the church and a member of the familiy who grew in Bartlesville, Oklahoma and he and his daughter, and her boyfriend also from Oklahoma attending the University of Central Oklahoma. Pastor Brown said during the service that the church had never had so many Oklahomans in the building ever. I felt like saying “Rita, we are Okies, not Oklahomans” but I was doing my best to behave myself.


The service was very warm with great singing and Pastor Webb delivered a great sermon. The whole experience was very warm, welcoming, and encouraging. I love the Bible verse on the plaque above. I think that a small country church that has been hanging in there doing the good work for 125 years deserves that verse.

Sioux Valley Baptist Church

Here is my sister and fellow blogger Ellen. She posted about the church and our family here. She has a great photograph of She, our brother, father, and me on the post.

Inspired Sunday 

Pastor Rita Weber’s web site. Check it out, she is quite the woman and a great pastor.

If you are geocaching minded, there is no geocache on the grounds but the church has been listed as a waypoint on the geocaching offshoot site  waypoint dot com here.

Skywatch Friday – South Dakota Moon with Venus

Crescent Moon, Venus,

Last weekend I made a quick trip up to South Dakota from Oklahoma to attend a family reunion. I had a good time on the drive. I stopped and found some geocaches and took a few pictures and took my time getting up there. Driving along I29 in South Dakota south of Sioux Falls I spotted the crescent moon over the wheat fields and pulled off the next rest stop to take a photograph.

When I saw the powerlines and was a little disappointed but I’m big into the concept that if you don’t get what you want then you work with you got so I got an electrical transmission tower along with my sliver of a moon and my planet venus. Which since I’m a generous guy I’ve decided to share the moon, Venus, and even the tower with you.

Skywatch Friday