Black Hills Aerial Adventures, Custer, SD:
My mother and I took our first helicopter ride today, and it was surprisingly accessible for someone who could barely walk like me. At any rate, the staff was particularly friendly, as were other patrons, and the helicopter pilot was knowledgeable as we flew over the Black Hills seeing the devastation of the ash beetle below while looking at both Mount Rushmore and the Crazy Horse Memorial that has been under construction since 1948 and has at least 20 or 30 years or so to go. If you’re looking for an enjoyable experience in a helicopter, this is a great place to get your first experience in one.
Colonial House Restaurant, Rapid City, SD:
A family owned restaurant near the hotel where we stayed, this particular place offers tasty food and friendly service with what appears to be a pretty popular regular crowd. Despite some problems finding sufficient people to work at present–a problem that seems pretty universal in the areas where we have traveled–the restaurant does make quite a few of its ingredients itself and has great suppliers for the rest. My mother had a blue walnut salad with raspberry vinaigrette while I had chicken noodle soup, a side salad with Italian dressing that offered plenty of tasty veggies like celery and broccoli, as well as the chicken and broccoli alfredo, all of which were tasty.
Lazy U Motel, Rapid City, SD:
Although this place looks like it could be the set for a Sam Hunt music video, this hotel is a good reason why it is best to not judge by surface appearances. A one-story motel with street parking to the rooms, this hotel offers comfortable places to sleep, some reasonably good breakfast options, and friendly staff. We were fortunate enough to have quiet neighbors, which is not something that can be taken for granted, and the hotel is convenient to traveling, which was very enjoyable. The motel is definitely not young, but it has personality, in a good way.