The Heart of Aberdeen
Holgate Students share what makes Aberdeen home

The Heart of Aberdeen

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Carolyn Geyer and Mia Bergan came up with an assignment for their 7th grade language arts students: What’s Aberdeen lucky to have? The following pieces highlight the special treasures that make Aberdeen a truly great place to live.

The actors complete their final song and hold the last note out, waving spectacular jazz hands. The audience jumps to their feet, a standing ovation. The Aberdeen Capitol Theatre features live theater between April and November. A few years ago, my family and I attended the theater’s performance of “James and the Giant Peach.” The director of the play cast people from kids to teenagers to play the parts. I liked seeing some of the people I grew up with show their talents to the town. I really enjoy having a place to watch live theatre here in Aberdeen, South Dakota. By Joseph Miller

Swoosh, the wind blows across the trees surrounding Richmond Lake. People bike up and down the trails that run through the lush green trees during the South Dakota summer. I have biked through these trails countless times. It is one of the many things I look forward to doing in the summer right here in Aberdeen. I like biking and exploring, so these trails are extraordinary. This is not the only thing I like to do at Richmond Lake. I also like disc golfing. Many baskets line the trails, and it is not a short course. These are things that I like about my town, Aberdeen. By Carson Stoddard

Life is definitely better at the lake. Of the places I enjoy in Aberdeen, the lakes are at the top of my list, specifically Mina. In the summer, my family and I love to go to our cabin and spend the day at the lake. It is also fun inviting friends and family to the lake. You can just hang out and enjoy nature or do many fun activities that the lake has to offer such as boating, tubing, water skiing, swimming, or playing yard games. My family has made and will keep making many memories at the lake, and I enjoy spending time there. By Ellie Isaak

There’s no place like Aberdeen! I enjoy visiting Wylie Park where you can rent fun bikes, walk your dog, ride the train, look at animals, or visit the castle. There is also mini-golf, go-karts, bumper boats, and a laser maze. I’ve been to many different towns and nowhere has a park like this. Besides Wylie Park, Aberdeen has the Brown County Fair where you can go on rides, watch concerts, see animals, and eat fair food. The fair here has free parking which makes it unique from other fairs. Aberdeen really is unique!! By Brynley Kaan

There are many unique features about Aberdeen, and we’re going to explore them. Firstly, we have Storybook Land. Storybook Land, established in 1976, has been one of the defining attractions that put Aberdeen on the map. How Storybook Land has done that is by just being a place for fun for the family. Another defining feature of Aberdeen is Wylie Park. At Wylie Park, you can have a walk anywhere, or enjoy things like minigolf or bumper boats. Places like these two make Aberdeen a notable place in South Dakota, and hopefully they will be there to stay. By Evan Adajar

Grab your rods and grab your guns. In Aberdeen, we can experience some prime pheasant hunting. I personally love fishing with friends in lakes by Aberdeen and enjoying going tubing and a nice drive around the lake. I love that in Aberdeen there are so many opportunities to catch a fish, shoot a pheasant, or maybe even a whitetail deer. The fishing doesn’t stop when winter comes around because with the lakes all frozen, it makes for good ice fishing. Enjoying the tournaments and catching the big ones with family and friends is always super fun. By Owen Ward

Ace! The crowd cheers wildly as the server makes another point. One thing I enjoy in Aberdeen would be Matchbox volleyball. Matchbox is a very special event that has lots of kids from different towns come together to play volleyball in Aberdeen. There’s a wide variety of sports and activities you can do at Matchbox. Matchbox gives me the opportunity to improve my skills in volleyball, and lets me meet new people from neighboring towns. That is one of the reasons why I appreciate Aberdeen; it’s for their dedication to the sports you love! By Mya Aramatzis

The YMCA is my favorite place to be and here’s why. Whether you want to work out, swim, or even play basketball, the Y is the best for doing all of this. I love to hang out with my friends there. The gym upstairs is really nice and clean. The staff is really kind and helpful, so are the kids that I meet in the gym. The equipment is quality, and that’s why I like the gym. Lastly, the pool is even better! That’s why I love the YMCA In Aberdeen, South Dakota. By Carter Lust

What is unique about Aberdeen? I love all of the camping opportunities that our town has to offer because my family and I love camping. Sometimes it is for a weekend and other times it is for a whole week, but we love camping because we get to spend time together. We love Richmond Lake campground. We can go on long walks, fish on the dock, and take nice long bike rides. This is why I appreciate my town, Aberdeen, so much! By Addison Jenson

Standing on the blocks above the pool, you feel the adrenaline rushing through your body…then *beep*. Aberdeen is very lucky to have the Aberdeen Swim Club, also referred to as ASC. I have tried many sports in my life, and by far swimming is my favorite. Now it’s not just because of the sport itself, it’s because of how welcoming and kind the team is. Every meet I go to is full of energy and excitement, as well as how helpful the sport is with staying healthy. That is why I appreciate the Aberdeen Swim Club in our community so much. By Paisley LaFave

I love walking down Aberdeen’s beautiful Main Street. I might go to the Capitol Theater for a spectacular performance in a stunning theater put on by fellow Aberdonians. Then I would go grab a coffee at the Red Rooster or the newly built Market on the Plaza owned locally. I might even walk over to the Dakota Prairie Museum to learn for free the history of our amazing town. Later, when it gets dark, the street lights up, and I can see an amazing light show of the Theater and Plaza. The scene is truly something wonderful! By Elsa Schiferl

VROOM! VROOM! Imagine, you’re asked to rise; you start singing the national anthem. All of a sudden, the cars start speeding one by one. As the announcer is broadcasting the racer´s names, my friends and I are laughing about absolutely nothing. That is one of the feelings I get at the Brown County Speedway. The raceway is one of the fun attractions I extremely enjoy in our town. Not only is it exhilarating, the tasty food makes the experience even better. While enjoying this food, the crowd is roaring, the checkered flag is being waved, and we have a winner! By Raylee Brick

BOOM!!!!! With a big bang, a pheasant falls from the sky and hits the ground. Just seconds after the bird hits the ground, a hunting dog goes to retrieve the bird. Hunting is very popular in Aberdeen and many people enjoy hunting. Sometimes you could be driving or even riding your bike by the field next to Presentation College, and you could see ducks or pheasants. You could even see some deer. For example, many people could say that they saw a deer on the way to school. I know for a fact that my family enjoys this outdoor activity. This is one of the many things that makes Aberdeen unique. By McKenzie Jorgensen

Grab your sunscreen, or even some years an umbrella, and attend the Brown Country Fair. Attractions include the concerts and rodeos. Some of the best country singers can be found on stage here. Some of my favorite rides at the fair are the Ring of Fire and the Drop. There are thrilling rides, but these are a couple of my favorites. Lastly, the food available is quite tasty. This last year, there was even a family giving out root beer floats to people. I appreciate the people who make this fair possible. Not only do we get to enjoy the fair, we can feel safe in our community. By Madi Bishop

Aberdeen is special to me, but also everyone else who lives here. Do you want to know why? It is because Aberdeen has a heart, not a famous statue or giant waterpark, but we have a great big heart. For the most part, we have a very safe community; there are rarely people who point out the fact they dislike a person. Overall, I’m lucky to live in Aberdeen, not just because of all the sights and attractions, but because of the kind caring people. By Raylee Brick

Gather the decoys, orange gear, and ammunition. I feel very fortunate to live in Aberdeen, SD, where I can go hunting and fishing with my family. In the fall months, we like to go hunting. I enjoy the opportunity to hunt ducks, pheasants, and deer. My dad and I go hunting on private and public land. There are a lot of areas around Aberdeen that have been good for my family to go hunting and fishing. In the summer, my family and I like to go fishing, and we go ice fishing in the winter at Mina or Richmond Lake. This is what I enjoy doing in Aberdeen. By Khloe Cochran

What I appreciate about Aberdeen are the summer activities. On a hot summer day, there is nothing better than to be lazy on the lazy river at the Aquatic Center. Or on cool summer nights, sitting around a campfire at Richmond, Roy, or Mina Lake. In the month of August, it is so much fun when you and all of your friends are sitting on the ferris wheel at the Brown County Fair and drinking their delicious lemonade and the various stands throughout the fair. Summers are the best, in my opinion, but those are my favorite things about Aberdeen during the summer. By Quinn Blackbird

The night roars with horrified screams, the sound of chainsaws ripping through those yells! It’s the Haunted forest! One thing I appreciate most in Aberdeen is the Haunted forest, which occurs only once a year. I love it because of how much effort the community puts into the event! For example, they have both a night show, for a mature audience, and a day show, for the younger crowd! Along the way, I might see zombies, scary clowns, and freaky aliens, to name just a few. This is a yearly event that I tremendously enjoy attending with my friends. By Abagail Deutsch

Our family loves being outdoors in the fresh air. Aberdeen has brought that family fun to life. National Night Out is a family friendly experience. Every October, people from all over Aberdeen get to eat good food and participate in fun activities and challenges. I love when I get to watch movies at night, meet the firemen, have a good hotdog and partake in the fun. Things like this really make Aberdeen unique. In the past few years, National Night Out was postponed due to COVID. When it comes again, I will definitely go. By James Ferguson

WOoHOo! This is probably one of the first things you’d hear if you were at the Brown County Fair in Aberdeen SD. Aberdeen is a very inviting town. There are many fun things to do here, for example, the Brown County Fair with rides, entertainment, and good food. Each year we have this attraction, which I know my whole family enjoys. Aberdeen has even more to offer. For example, you can go celebrate the exciting victory at an Aberdeen Wings hockey game in town. Aberdeen is a respectable community, and I have no doubt about it. By Briggs Medill

Imagine, it’s a nice warm day in August, and your plans are to go ride rides with friends, go to the rodeo or concerts later that night, and eat lots of delicious food at the Brown County Fair. I think that the Brown County Fair is definitely a family friendly event or an attraction that makes Aberdeen a very special place. Every year my family and I camp for the whole week and have a fantastic time with friends. The Brown County Fair is a place where you can never become bored because it is always a crazy new experience every time. By Jerzy Parmely

Around Halloween, I enjoy going to the Haunted Forest with my friends. The Haunted Forest is an attraction many people go to during the month of October. The Haunted Forest varies everywhere throughout Wylie Park. What I enjoy about it is the realism of the acting and the props, the effort they put into it every single year, and the amount of detail in the decorations. I’m not a person that gets scared easily, but the Haunted Forest is pretty scary, and even I scream. They chase you with chainsaws and things like that, and it’s a thrill! By Grace Reszler

Splash! You hear that sound at the water park every summer. What I love most about the water park is the cold water, the concessions, and how nice the workers are. My friends and I hang out there since there is so much to do and we all have a blast! The Aberdeen Aquatic Center is probably the best place to go during the summer to stay cool and have fun. My favorite thing to do there is to go down the water slides, especially the yellow one which is the fastest. The water park is what I love most about Aberdeen. By Jordan Rexinger

The beeping of pinball machines ring in your ear. Families all around you, laughing, playing games and talking to one-another. That’s right, you’re in the Retrocade. Found on Main Street, this place is fun for people of all ages. I can not think of the countless hours I have spent at the Retrocade in my lifetime. This is one of my favorite places to hang out. The Retrocade welcomes anyone to come in, and the owners are really nice too! This is just one of the places that makes Aberdeen a unique place. By Aric Tennant

The delicious taste hits your tongue; it is Twist Cone ice cream! Aberdeen is the only place in the whole world with a Twist Cone! This is my favorite out of all of the ice cream places in our community. Twist Cone has a ton of different flavors, and all of them are really good. My family and I usually always go on the day that it opens in March. My favorite flavor to get is probably the twist cone, which is just vanilla and chocolate mixed together. It is without a doubt delicious. My family always enjoys going to Twist Cone. By Gage Sauvage

¨Into three and out of four and away we go.¨ That was one of the most heard lines of my childhood. This quote was heard by me at Brown County Speedway, ever since I was the age of five. Brown County Speedway makes Aberdeen unique. I can sit and watch all the classes from street stocks to ¨the big iron¨ to the late models. I can sit and watch my favorite driver. At every intermission, Ken’s Superfair Foods sponsors a candy toss for the kids. After the races are over, I can go back to the pits and meet some of my favorite drivers. That’s pretty cool! By Weston Schaeffer

Something I really appreciate about Aberdeen is the community. The community in Aberdeen is always willing to help out. For example, every year we have a Brown County Fair, and there are always plenty of volunteers there to help out with anything needed. Another example is the church. If you have ever attended a church in Aberdeen, then you know that the people at the churches are very respectable (New Life fellowship). They are always there for you when you need them, and they are very good listeners when it comes to time to listen. In addition, they are easy to talk to. These are just a few of the reasons why I appreciate living here. By Deon Parker

The gentle rolling of waves, the musical chirping of birds, and the methodical rustling of leaves. The place I just described is Richmond Park. My family and I love to go there to unwind after a long day. The scenery out at Richmond is remarkable. The lake right off the trails and glimmering. My dad and I enjoy riding our bikes out at Richmond and we race. There are even horse trails! Richmond Park is for sure one of my favorite things about Aberdeen and why it is so special to me. By Aspen Kline

Calm, quiet, and a blast from the past! The Dacotah Prairie Museum provides a welcoming look at the history of Aberdeen, the surrounding area, and South Dakota’s past to present time. From Native American culture to the Industrial Revolution and the railroad, the Dacotah Prairie Museum sits close to the iconic “Hub” to which Aberdeen gets its nickname, “Hub City”. I’ve been to the Dacotah Prairie Museum multiple times and each time I learn something new. As the years go on and history is written the Dacotah Prairie Museum will continue to be the G.O.A.T.! By Darius Laducer

Vroom! You hear other go-karts trying to pass you as you’re racing them around the track at Thunder Road. You beat your friends just to go do bumper boats with them, next. It’s so much fun to go and race your friends or soak them on the bumper boats at Thunder Road. I love this place because it gets me out of the house and is something fun to do with family and friends. You also can do mini-golf, the laser maze challenge, and EuroBungy. It really is a fun place to hang out with friends. By Brinley Neifer

You walk into a huge arcade, there’s so many things to do! You and your friends rush to all the fun games and activities at Allevity Entertainment. Allevity has many fun things to do, my personal favorite is laser tag, ax throwing, rock climbing, bumper cars, and many arcade games. Allevity is my favorite place in Aberdeen because there are so many fun things to do. That is why Allevity makes Aberdeen unique. By Carter Kiefer

K.O. Lee Aberdeen Public Library is home to 10, 20 or maybe even 100 thousand books. Right when you walk in you get that crisp book smell. Turn left and see the kids area with more simple books and computers plus comfort setting. Adult areas have more complex books plus more computers. My favorite part is that you can research in peace, read, and check out movies. I love getting books in other languages, so I can expand my knowledge on various cultures. I look forward to going there whenever I can. By Davin Washenberger

You’re walking up to the building and smell the aroma of fresh cooked meat. At Dulce’s Hispanic Store/Mexican Restaurant you can get the best Mexican tacos. When I ate their food, it was the best thing I ever ate in my life. The owner of the store and restaurant is very nice and welcomes everyone. Apart from the restaurant, they have a store full of Latin American goods. I really enjoy having this restaurant and store in Aberdeen, South Dakota. By Dulce Salas

After I do my last dive for swim practice at the aquatic center, I go to the waterpark with my friends for a couple of hours. The Aberdeen, SD, Aquatic Center is home to the Stingrays. This place is unique to me because I am on the team. The Aquatic Center is a waterpark which has a tube slide, an open flume slide, and an enclosed body flume slide that provides an exciting ride. I really enjoy having a pool to swim in and a place to go for a nice day in the sun. By Jackson Isaak

POW, the lights go off. Actors come back on to complete their bows. The crowd goes wild with excitement. The Aberdeen Community Theater shows LIVE theatrical performances during their season during the months of April and November. I have had the privilege to be in 4 ACT shows. The director choses actors to portray the roles. It is really nice seeing the people you grew up with working with you. It is a good thing to have a place to show your talents and to watch local talents. I have memories of this that will last a long time. By Joey Johnson

“Experience is the only thing that brings knowledge , and the longer you are on earth the more experience you are sure to get.” -L. Frank the author of the Wizard of Oz. Watch the fairy tale Wizard of Oz come to life at Storybook Land, a place where you can experience many rides, life size characters from the Wizard of Oz and more! My family and I look forward to walking down the yellow brick road and showing relatives that have never been there before to enjoy Aberdeen SD and it’s unique features. By Lauren Sahli 

Whoosh! You’re flying free as the wind blows through your hair when someone passes by. The feeling of paradise feels just a glimpse away. Rolling away from the sway of the music. A sophisticated lifestyle of Aberdeen South Dakota referred to as Skateaway. I have been to skateaway many times before. Even though I’m rough at skating and I’ve fallen down numerous times. However, skating from my experience is a fun filled, extraordinary experience, and contributes a lot of entertainment. Whether it’s hanging out with friends, playing arcade games, skating, or even just eating. Skateaway is a remarkable place to be. By Maggie Ferguson 

Roar, you hear the cars fly past. The Brown County Speedway is a great place to spend a night watching dirt track racing. You can watch WISSOTA Pure, Street and Super Stock cars or WISSOTA Midwest modified and modified or late models. Watching races is one of my favorite things to do on the weekends. On Friday nights over 5,000 people can watch the races. You don’t usually think of racing being a small town thing but it is one of the most watched things in the US. I love watching races here in Aberdeen. By Mason Spieker

YUMMY, as Twist Cone opens up every summer there are long lines waiting to get a cold treat. You can go for any meal of the day. The ice cream treats are amazing and addicting. At night the sign glows and it looks really cool! Many people go to Twist Cone on a hot summer day. The flavors really melt on my tongue! I look forward to Twist Cone once it opens up, to get their flavor of the week. In my opinion every flavor of the week is by far the best thing on their menu! By Regan Lust

The players walk off the court to thunderous applause. Yet another tremendous win by Northern State’s Men’s basketball team! The Northern Wolves provide entertainment during the winter months. It’s my favorite source of entertainment in Aberdeen. Northern has a great basketball team and have won the conference title 4 out of 5 years! Everytime I go to watch I know I am going to get a great show from the amazing coaches and players. I really love having a great basketball program here in Aberdeen! By Mitchell Hofer

Roma’s Ristorante is an Italian restaurant that serves a multitude of dishes. Being in Roma’s feels like you’re actually in Italy! One time when I went there I got the “Mussels Marinara”. It was so good I ate it in five minutes. Their free bread they give you is also amazing and the vinaigrette that comes with, is garlicky and tangy, a perfect match for the fresh bread. It’s nice that there is somewhere you can always get authentic, Italian food, here in Aberdeen. By Zach Ricci 

Zoom! The motorcycles just whizzed past. It’s the Gypsy Day Parade! Full of motorcycles, dirt bikes and more. We are lucky to have businesses and volunteers to drive in the parade every year. Aberdeen has been doing this since 1916. Saturday, October 2 was the 105th annual parade in downtown Aberdeen. It is nice to see friends and to high-five them along the parade route. This gets the whole town out of their houses to make friends with other people. The only fighting you see here is the playful fighting over candy! By Allison Brenner

Homework help, table games, outdoor activities and much, much more, this is what makes The Yapatorium one of Aberdeen’s most sought out places to attend for youth of the area. This free after school and summer center is a great place to pass some time and meet new people. My personal favorite thing to do at The Yapatorium is play on the computers or challenge my friends on the PS5’s or Nintendo Switches. If you find yourself feeling bored come check out The Yapatorium-Where youth is still golden. By Caden Hommel