Madison, SD

Quick City Facts

County: Lake
Population (2019): 7,270
Population (2010): 6,474

Data provided by US Census Bureau (2019)

The history of the present-day town of Madison begins with the merging of two individual villages, Madison and Herman. The original Madison was established in 1875, with the town of Herman following in 1878. The two towns became bitter rivals for naming of the seat of Lake County. With the creation of a third city, named the new Madison by settler C.B. Kennedy, the existing residents of old Madison were eager to make the transition. Herman residents were less enthusiastic, many of them putting up a formidable resistance, but eventually most of the town agreed to the move. Today, the new Madison is a thriving tourist community, and is also home to Dakota State University, the city’s nationally recognized center of higher education.

Recreation

Madison exercises a strong commitment to the health and wellness of its citizens, exemplified by The Community Center. Run by the Dakota State University and the City of Madison, this multifaceted indoor recreational facility boasts a fully outfitted gym, volleyball and basketball courts, an indoor track, a large six-lane swimming pool, racquetball courts, and more. For those who prefer outdoor recreation, the Lake Herman State Park and nearby Walkers’ Point offer numerous lakeside activities, including camping, fishing, boating, and hiking.

Arts & Culture

Dakota State University is proud to house the Dakota Prairie Playhouse. Located on campus, the Playhouse is the site of numerous performing arts events. It also contains a spacious conference center ideal for banquets, receptions, and corporate events. Also located on the DSU campus is the Smith-Zimmermann Museum, which displays fully restored Victorian rooms with antique furnishings and relics used by 18th century farmers. The Depot Railroad Museum commemorates the early railway systems that helped to shape and fortify Madison. Just two miles west of Madison, Prairie Village is a museum community with more than 40 restored buildings, including churches, a schoolhouse, the Lawrence Welk Opera House, and more. Each exhibit is filled with antiques from the pioneer days, helping modern-day visitors understand the challenges and ways of life of the first South Dakotan settlers. In downtown Madison, renowned local artist John C. Green keeps his working studio, where he creates the nature- and wildlife-focused paintings that have earned him a stellar reputation throughout South Dakota and the nation. His main inspiration has been the surroundings of the beautiful town of Madison, where he’s lived all his life.

Shopping & Dining

Madison services tourists and residents with a variety of high-quality dining establishments, including Rumors Steakhouse & Lounge, El Vaquero Authentic Mexican Restaurant, and Stadium Sports Grill. Shopping enthusiasts will delight in an eclectic offering of unique stores peddling handmade jewelry, local antiques, Western apparel, home care products, delicious bakery products, and books.

Popular Attractions

Museum of Geology

Museum of Geology

Rapid City

National Presidential Wax Museum

National Presidential Wax Museum

Keystone

W. H. Over Museum

W. H. Over Museum

Vermillion

Mad Mary’s Steakhouse

Mad Mary’s Steakhouse

Flandreau

Pints & Quarts

Pints & Quarts

Brookings

Paddy O’Neill’s Irish Pub & Grill

Paddy O’Neill’s Irish Pub & Grill

Deadwood

Sylvan Rocks Climbing School & Guide Service

Sylvan Rocks Climbing School & Guide Service

Hill City

Doubletree Gallery Framing, Gifts & Collectibles

Doubletree Gallery Framing, Gifts & Collectibles

Sisseton

Haisch Pharmacy & Gifts

Haisch Pharmacy & Gifts

Canton

Mochavino

Mochavino

Madison

Deadwood Social Club

Deadwood Social Club

Deadwood

Big Sioux Power Sports

Big Sioux Power Sports

Sioux Falls

The Treasury at Hotel On Phillips

The Treasury at Hotel On Phillips

Sioux Falls

Main Street Square

Main Street Square

Rapid City

Visit Spearfish, Inc.

Visit Spearfish, Inc.

Spearfish

Casa Del Rey

Casa Del Rey

Sioux Falls

Rushmore Tramway Adventures

Rushmore Tramway Adventures

Keystone

Black Hills Coupon Book

Black Hills Coupon Book

Rapid City

Great Faces. Great Places.

South Dakota is an incredibly unique state in that each region offers a completely different experience then the others. Check out each of the regions to see what each has to offer!

Badlands

Western South Dakota

Featuring the Black Hills, Badlands, the Sturgis Rally. This region tends to be the most popular.

CENTRAL REGION

This region of South Dakota offers some of the best hunting and fishing in the entire central US. 

Eastern Region

The eastern region is home to the largest city in the state and provides visitors with a true "prairie" experience.