Editorial: Address protections at sacred Bear Butte
"Bear Butte has long been a sacred site for Native Americans. The state of South Dakota also recognizes the significance of Bear Butte and in 1961 officially deemed it a state park. By 1973, the U.S. Department of Interior designated Bear Butte as a National Historic Landmark and a National Natural Landmark.

Fast forward to the year 2008. Gov. Mike Rounds proposed the 2008 state Legislature approve the state purchase of 743 acres of land that adjoined Bear Butte State Park, some of which ran up the side of the actual mountain.

The governor’s proposal was for one clear purpose: Restrict development around the butte and maintain the natural beauty of the state park. The Legislature said no.

For the Native Americans, Bear Butte is a sacred place. “There are people trying to pray in solitude and peace that are up on the mountain at all hours,” said Tamra Brennan, founder of a grass roots organization seeking to protect the butte.

Clearly, there’s an interest from both the state and the Native Americans in maintaining the integrity of Bear Butte both as a sacred and as a jewel in the South Dakota state park system. Understandably, there are different opinions on the development of the area on and around Bear Butte."

Get the Story:
Editorial: County needs to deal with Bear Butte area development (The Rapid City Journal 6/27)

Related Stories:
Editorial: Support protections for Bear Butte (2/19)
South Dakota governor seeks to protect Bear Butte (12/17)
Prayer planned at Bear Butte during biker rally (7/26)
Bar near sacred Bear Butte a headache for owner (6/19)
Owner of bar near Bear Butte faces unpaid bills (06/06)
Views: Middle school students debate Bear Butte (04/16)
Bill to create Bear Butte alcohol buffer zone killed (02/14)
Bill to ban new bars near Bear Butte considered (2/9)
Bill to block new liquor licenses near Bear Butte killed (2/1)
Bill would bar new liquor licenses by Bear Butte (1/29)