SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Summer officially ends in a little less than three weeks. However, for many families, the Labor Day weekend is the unofficial end of summer.
More than 50 state parks and recreation areas offer camping in South Dakota.
The Midway Campground at the Lewis and Clark Recreation Area near Yankton is one of them.
It was full over the holiday weekend, but by late this morning, many of the campers had headed home. Paul Deacon of Madison says camping is a time to recharge with family and friends.
“It’s kind of the wind down to summer. The kids go back to school, college starts, it won’t be long, and it will be snowing. Get it in while you can,” he said.
Eric Wollan and his daughter Adriana say they are not done with the camping season yet. They’ve got at least two more weekends planned.
“We try to go fishing a couple of times before the ice fills up on the lakes and rivers, said Wollan.
Tom – Do you notice fewer people after Labor Day.?
“Oh yes, usually you don’t need to reserve a spot after Labor Day.”
A few miles up the road, Michael Grave operates the Lewis and Clark Resort right next to the lake and marina. Like a lot of business owners Labor Day means he’s losing a lot of his younger workers to school.
“Labor Day to me means it, a labor crunch all my help is almost gone,” said Grave.
Grave says the weekends will still be busy until colder temperatures settle in, but the weekdays are pretty peaceful.
“I like this time of year because it’s kinda my time to walk the grounds and see what repairs need to be made before next summer and what I can work on all winter. You know, things like that this time of year, I get a lot more time to interact with the guests. Because it’s a slower pace now, said Grave.
The resort, with its motel rooms, cabins, and lodges, used to shut down for the winter, but when he took over a few years ago, Grave decided to keep a portion of it open year-round. So people can still experience a Yankton getaway outside of summer.
“In the summer, everyone is.. go, go, go get on the boat go do this that. This time of year, it is more like a campfire. Slow down, just relax, enjoy it.” 2:15
According to KELOLAND Meteorologist Adam Rutt, summer officially ends at 1:49 a.m. on Saturday, September 23rd.