From the Badlands to the Black Hills, from the Mount Rushmore National Monument to the still-under-construction Crazy Horse Memorial, it’s not surprising that South Dakota is a classic RV road trip destination. A state where the buffalo really do still roam is about as classically American as you can get.
And don’t make the mistake of thinking this expansive state has nothing to offer landscape-wise aside from endless fields of corn and prairie — not that those aren’t beautiful in their own right. No matter what kind of outdoor adventure you’re after, South Dakota has a perfect place for you to tackle it.
If hiking and mountaineering is what you’re after, look no further than the west-central town of Spearfish, well known for its climbing opportunities. Eager to try your hand at some water adventures? South Dakota is home to dozens of rivers ranging from placid to rapid, so you can choose from gentle paddling to out-and-out white water rafting. There’s also great hunting and fishing opportunities in this state, to say nothing of its famous sights, attractions, and monuments. In short, if you haven’t had the opportunity to explore the Mount Rushmore State yet, we’re not sure what you’re waiting for!
This is also the perfect state for motorhome and travel trailer adventures, and not just because South Dakota is home to some of the finest RV parks in the country. It’s also useful to be able to drive yourself across its wide expanse, since that means you’ll get to see every nook and cranny of its landscape, all while enjoying your comfort and privacy.
A popular way to enjoy the state’s landscape by motorhome or travel trailer is to find a South Dakota RV rental, either through a large, commercial rental agency or right here on the peer-to-peer market at RVshare. Renting by owner helps you save money and also gives you more unique and comfortable vehicles to choose from, which will help you feel right at home no matter where the road takes you!
Of course, at some point after many wonderful camping adventures, you may decide it’s finally time to get a rig of your very own. It’s a hefty investment, but for those of us who love the thrill of travel, it’s well worth it.
That said, when you’re spending tens of thousands of dollars on a vehicle, you definitely want to make sure it’s the right one for you and your family. That’s why RV shows are such a great opportunity for campers on the market to buy their first (or next) travel trailer or motorhome: You get the opportunity to shop around and walk through a huge number of vehicles in a small period of time, and to shop area RV dealerships conveniently all under the same roof.
So, if you’re a South Dakotan wondering, “Where are the best RV shows near me?” — we’ve got your answer.
Here are some upcoming RV camper shows in South Dakota that you don’t want to miss.
1. The Black Hills Sports Show and Outdoor Expo
When you’re looking for a camper and RV show, it’s not always just about the rig. It’s about all the fun activities you participate in while you’re camping!
That’s why the Black Hills Sports Show and Outdoor Expo is such a great opportunity for outdoorsy campers. You’ll get to explore a large exhibition space filled with all sorts of vendors and exhibitors, from hunting and fishing equipment to the ATV you’ve been aching to load up into your toy hauler.
Why You’ll Love the Black Hills Sports Show and Outdoor Expo
Even though the Black Hills Sports Show and Outdoor Expo is far more than just a motorhome show, many of the best South Dakota RV dealers will be there this year — which means you’ll have ample opportunities to learn more about how to find your next perfect vacation vehicle. You’ll also get the chance to meet and greet representatives from local area campgrounds and South Dakota RV parks, so you’ll have plenty of dreamy itineraries all set up ahead of time when you do find the rig of your dreams.
This year’s sports show is the 36th annual, and it’s not hard to see why the expo has been successful for so many years running. It’s often said that camping shows feature something for everybody, but in the case of the Black Hills Sports Show and Outdoor Expo, it’s pretty undeniable. The organizers have really thought of everything!
Along with the huge exhibition space featuring well over 100 vendors from a 350-mile radius, the expo also features a “Ladies’ Lane,” which will feature unique home products, clothing, arts and gifts… just in case she’s not quite as thrilled about hunting rifles as hubby.
And if you’re worried the kids will get bored, well, go ahead and lay that fear to rest. There are so many free kids’ activities, the biggest problem you’ll face is where to start — the climbing wall or the youth archery contest both seem like good options, and don’t forget about the camo face-painting station.
There will also be auctions to benefit South Dakota Youth Hunting Adventures, informative seminars on hunting and camping-related topics, trophy deer displays, and more. Best of all, your low entry price gets you in all weekend long, and the proceeds go to local charities, so you can feel good about your purchase!
The Black Hills Sports Show and Outdoor Expo takes place at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in Rapid City, South Dakota, a 150,000-square-foot exhibition space in the heart of one of South Dakota’s most exciting cities. Make a city-slicker weekend of it and stay in one of the affordable local area hotels, enjoying fine dining and cultural attractions like the galleries at the Dahl Arts Center or local drama at the Black Hills Community Theater — or, if you already have a camper you call your own, set up a site in the nearby Black Hills National Forest. It may be chilly in February, but it’s still beautiful!
For even more information, be sure to check out the show website and Facebook page, which is kept up to date with schedule information and pictures to help ramp up your excitement for this one-of-a-kind event.
Black Hills Sports Show and Outdoor Expo Information
Location: The Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in Rapid City, South Dakota
Address: 444 North Mount Rushmore Road, Rapid City, South Dakota 57701
Phone: Contact Ami Larson at (605) 939-1812
Email: [email protected]
Dates: February 14- 16, 2020
- Friday, February 14: 12 p.m. noon – 7 p.m.
- Saturday, February 15: 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.
- Sunday, February 16: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
- Adult Weekend Pass: $8.00
- Family Weekend Pass: $20.00
- Kids aged 5 – 12: $5.00
- Kids 5 and under: FREE!
- Proceeds go to local charities!
Tickets: To be purchased on-site at the box office
2. The Annual Sioux Empire Sportsmen’s Show
Looking for a travel trailer show you won’t soon forget?
This year’s Annual Sioux Empire Sportsmen’s Show is 51st annual running, and it’s filled to the brim with motorhomes, travel trailers, boats, trucks, and outfitters for every type of outdoorsy fun you can imagine.
Oh, and did we mention it’s one of the largest RV shows in South Dakota, roo?
Why You’ll Love The Annual Sioux Empire Sportsmen’s Show
As its name suggests, the Annual Sioux Empire Sportsmen’s Show is actually a whole, well, empire of shows in one. It features all sorts of vehicles, from travel trailers and motorhomes to boats — and it also hosts a huge range of outdoor goods purveyors and experts, from hunting and fishing to travel experts and representatives from local campgrounds, fishing resorts, hunting grounds, charter tours and more. Basically, if you’ve ever been curious about any kind of outdoor sport or pursuit, you’ll find the good and information you need to give it a try at this sportsmen’s expo.
The show will also host an array of fun family activities, from the annual Great Bear Show to a live trout pond, where anglers of all ages can reel in a whopper. Need a little extra know-how? Enjoy seminars and presentations from well-known hunting and fishing professionals, like Jason Mitchell, Todd Amenrud, and Ted Takasaki.
It all takes place at the Sioux Falls Arena and Convention Center in downtown Sioux Falls, South Dakota, home to the stunning Falls Park where the Big Sioux River tumbles over a picturesque range of crags. Make the weekend a complete event by bringing the kids to Corn Palace or the Great Plains Zoo, followed up by a noteworthy dinner with elevated comforting favorites at Minervas or Grille 26.
The Annual Sioux Empire Sportsmen’s Show Information
Location: The Sioux Falls Arena and Convention Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Address: 1201 Northwest Ave, Sioux Falls, South Dakota 57104
Phone: (605) 367-7288
Dates: March 12 – 15, 2020
- Thursday, March 12: 5 p.m. – 9 p.m.
- Friday, March 13: 12 p.m. noon – 9 p.m.
- Saturday, March 14: 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
- Sunday, March 15: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
- Adults: $10.00
- Children 6 – 12: $2.50
- Children 5 and under: FREE!
Tickets: To be purchased on-site at the box office, or in advance at participating vendors (see “Discounts” below)
Discounts: Save $1 on your price of admission by purchasing advance tickets at participating area Ace Hardware, HyVee, Lewis Drug, Get-N-Go and Cosmopolitan locations.
3. The Greater Sioux Falls Outdoor Show
Although all the information for the 2020 show isn’t live yet, this expo has been running along for more than 25 years!
Along with RVs and travel trailers, the Greater Sioux Falls Outdoor Show is also a great place to shop for ATVs, four-wheelers, boats, and more. That’s why its tagline is “Something for every outdoors lover to see!”
Why You’ll Love the Greater Sioux Falls Outdoor Show
Along with its wide range of vehicles, the Greater Sioux Falls Outdoor Show also hosts a number of South Dakota outdoor goods exhibitors and vendors, including camping equipment that will help make your next trip easier and more convenient. Best of all, you can participate in the fun without breaking the bank — adult tickets were only $7.00 last year, and kids under 12 get in for free!
The show takes place at the W. H. Lyon fairgrounds in Sioux Falls, which is a convenient drive from anywhere in eastern South Dakota, as well for those coming from nearby states like Iowa, Minnesota, and Nebraska. Making a weekend out of it? There are plenty of great South Dakota RV parks in the area, whether you’re driving a South Dakota RV rental or your own (soon-to-be-upgraded!) rig. You can also choose from a broad range of affordable hotel accommodations in the city, which will allow you to easily enjoy area attractions like the Queen Bee Mill Ruins or Sioux Falls’ wide array of museums. And hey, it’s January — so you could even take on the slopes at the nearby Great Bear Recreation Park!
Greater Sioux Falls Outdoor Show Information
Location: W. H. Lyon Fairgrounds in Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Address: 100 N Lyon Boulevard, Sioux Falls, South Dakota 57107
Phone: (605) 366-6186
Dates: TBA, but last year’s show was held over the third weekend in January
Prices: TBA, but last year’s tickets were just $7.00, and kids under 12 got in for FREE!
Tickets: To be purchased at the box office on-site
From your next travel trailer or motorhome to the ATVs and boats you’ll bring along for the adventure, when it comes to RV and camper shows, South Dakota has a broad range of world-class events that will fulfill your every outdoor and camping need.
Whether you’re ready to sign the paperwork for your next vehicle or merely in the “browsing” stage, RV shows are a great way to learn a lot about what’s out there in a short period of time — which is helpful when you’re eager to get rolling! You’ll also walk away with more information on potential destinations, activities, and even outdoor sports you might not have considered trying.
Best of all, it’s all going on in the great state of South Dakota, so after you’re done browsing the RV show expo center, you’ll find yourself in one of the most beautiful, well-loved landscapes in the union.
Enjoy the shows — and good luck on the hunt for your next vehicle!