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Tickets Available for Great Sioux Horse Effigy Return Celebration Banquet

The South Dakota State Historical Society will host a fundraising banquet as part of the celebration for the return of the society’s Great Sioux Horse Effigy from its international tour. The event will begin at 5:30 p.m. CDT on Sunday, Oct. 11, at the Ramkota Hotel in Pierre.

Two prominent speakers will make multi-media presentations at the banquet -- Kevin Gover, director of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C.; and Gaylord Torrence, senior curator of American Indian Art at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City.

Torrence was one of the chief curators involved in the organization of the international touring exhibition “The Plains Indians: Artists of Earth and Sky” which included the Great Sioux Horse Effigy. Gover is an Indian leader who will speak about effigies and horse memorials, including the horse memorial from his institution that will be displayed alongside South Dakota’s horse effigy in a new exhibit that opens Saturday, Oct. 10, at the Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre.

Banquet tickets cost $55 per person, $425 for a table of eight, and $750 for sponsors. Tickets can be purchased online at, by phone at (605) 773-3458, or at the Cultural Heritage Center, located at 900 Governors Drive in Pierre.

“We are especially excited about the banquet,” said Jay Smith, museum director at the Cultural Heritage Center. “Rare is the opportunity to hear two of the best speakers in the museum industry speaking at the same event, so I am certain that this will be a memorable event for all attendees.”

South Dakota Public Broadcasting will record the event for future broadcast.

South Dakota State Historical Society Director Jay D. Vogt will serve as master of ceremonies during the banquet. An exhibit, sales table and a cash bar will be available for attendees.

The Great Sioux Horse Effigy Return Celebration will be held in several locations in Pierre beginning Saturday, Oct. 10, and Sunday, Oct. 11, culminating in a special ceremony on Monday, Oct. 12, at 2 p.m. at the Cultural Heritage Center officiated by Lt. Gov. Matt Michels. There is no fee to attend any of the programs or events (with the exception of the Sunday evening banquet), but donations will be accepted and appreciated. For information about the events, go to

The Great Sioux Horse Effigy will be on display in the primary gallery of the museum beginning Saturday, Oct. 10, at 9 a.m., along with two other horse memorials borrowed from the State Historical Society of North Dakota and the National Museum of the American Indian. The new display of the three effigies will be exhibited at the Cultural Heritage Center for two years.

This is the first time since the South Dakota State Historical Society became a Smithsonian Affiliate in 2013 that the society has exercised its privilege to borrow an artifact from one of the Smithsonian museums.

For more information about the banquet or any of the Return Celebration events, visit the society’s website at or call (605) 773-3458.

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