Project Spotlight: Exploring Custer State Park

Custer State Park is a state park and wildlife reserve in the Black Hills of southwestern South Dakota. The park is South Dakota’s largest and first state park, named after Lt. Colonel George Armstrong Custer. Attractions within close proximity to the park include Mount Rushmore National Memorial, Crazy Horse Memorial, Jewel Cave National Monument, and Wind Cave National Park.

But Custer State Park has a wide range of attractions and activities that deserve to be noted and highlighted as destination-worthy adventures waiting to be discovered.

Split Rock Studios designed and built hands-on exhibits that invite visitors to see Custer State Park in new ways. Stunning photomurals and replica trees and rock spires bring the beauty of the park indoors, while vibrant photography highlights the many scenic and recreational activities within the park, encouraging visitors of all interests and backgrounds to explore and create their own park adventures.

Interactive elements within the exhibit further engage visitors as they learn more about the park’s many features. A large topographic map table greets them when they arrive, serving as an interactive introduction to Custer’s iconic journeys. Accommodating both self-directed and ranger-assisted explorations, the experience highlights the park’s points of interest and lets guests personalize their path based on the topics that interest them most, from history to hiking.

Life-size bison cutouts teach visitors about bison biology and behavior. With an unconventional approach to safety, the exhibits use a combination of live-action footage with depth-sensing and proximity-triggered content to educate visitors about how to safely view the park’s famous bison.

Split Rock Studios partnered with Second Story Inc. who created custom digital content to make these elements come to life.

The exhibit experience at the Custer State park Visitors Center give visitors a deeper understanding of the park, equipping them for moments of discovery in nature.