SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — October and November bring specific opportunities to learn, honor and celebrate Indigenous heritage.

South Dakota is one of just a handful of states that recognize the second Monday in October as Native Americans’ Day. November is designated November is National American Indian Heritage Month.

In an Inside KELOLAND Special, KELOLAND News is highlighting the rich culture and traditions still celebrated by Native American people today.

South Dakota is home to roughly 77,000 Native Americans, according to the latest census numbers.

Events Celebrating Culture

Hundreds of people gathered in downtown Sioux Falls for the 6th annual Native Americans’ Day parade.

This year’s grand marshal was 94-year-old Opal Stars, who grew up on the Rosebud Reservation.

Students in the Sioux Falls school district recognized Native Americans’ Day early. Members of the Okichiyapi Club held a lunch-time celebration.

In June, the Two-Spirit community in Sioux Falls celebrated Pride Month with a Wacipi at Elmwood park.

Over the summer, the Levitt in downtown Sioux Falls held its first All My Relatives festival.

Local Activisms

A large group of Washington High School students took part in a walkout to raise awareness for the Missing, Murdered Indigenous Women epidemic.

Local authors and community leaders discussed writing about MMIP during this year’s Festival of Books in Deadwood.

A member of the Yankton Sioux Nation will be one of five women to appear on the U.S. quarter next year. Zitkala-Ša was an author and activist for Indigenous rights.

The South Dakota man, who’s dream launched the “Dakota 38 + 2 Memorial Ride,” passed away in March of this year. Jim Miller‘s vision was to promote reconciliation and healing from historical trauma.

A western South Dakota Woman was nominated this year as a Remarkable Woman for her work focused on culture, community and quality of life.

Fashion & Art

Max Sevier from the Rosebud Sioux Tribe is using is talents as a fancy dancer to showcase his culture.

A Lower Brule family participated as models during this year’s New York Fashion Week.

People in KELOLAND got a rare opportunity to see the works of Oscar Howe this summer at the South Dakota Art Museum in Brookings.

The Lakota Landscapes exhibit, featuring 17 photos from Pine Ridge photographer Galen Larochei, is currently on display inside the Journey Museum in Rapid City.