Crazy Horse Memorial
Crazy Horse Memorial
Custer State Park Areaview website
12151 Avenue of the Chiefs
Crazy Horse, SD 57730+8900
Crazy Horse Memorial Description
The Crazy Horse Memorial seems to capture kids' imaginations more completely than Mount Rushmore. Maybe the subject matter -- a Lakota leader on a horse -- is more appealing than presidential faces. Maybe it's the active dynamiting that can sometimes be seen at the Memorial. Maybe they can identify with an incredibly huge, not yet completed project (like cleaning their room). Once finished, it will be the largest sculpture in the world. The sense of watching history in the making is palpable, and viewing the uncompleted Crazy Horse gives a new perspective to Mount Rushmore.
School-Age Kids: Don't miss the Indian Museum of North America -- it often has hand-on activities (like grinding corn or Lakota Indian games), and Native American artists and craftspeople set up shop there in the summer.
Pre-Teens & Teens: Grudging attendance turns to rapt attention during the laser show, and kids seem to get a kick out of the idea that one wrong blast could leave Crazy Horse's steed faceless.
- Join the crowd. If you are in the Black Hills on the first full weekend of June, check out the annual Volks March, which gives approximately 15,000 people the opportunity to climb up (6.2 miles round trip) and look Crazy Horse in the eye.
- Light show. If you are there late in the day, stay for the 30-minute evening laser show which projects Native American images onto the stone. During the summer, dark could fall as late as 10 p.m., so call ahead for more specific information on times.
- Catch a show. On summer weekdays there are two Native American dance performances each afternoon (usually at 1 and 3 p.m., but schedules may vary).
- Catch a ride. There are bus rides to the base of the sculpture for $4 per person, or van rides up to the arm of Crazy Horse for $120 per person, but not when dynamiting is being done or thunderstorms threaten.
- Fireworks. "Night Blasts" (pyrotechnic displays that light up the Monument) are held on June 26 and September 6 every year, weather permitting. Arrive early and bring three cans of food per person for admission (it benefits a local food bank).
Just the Facts
Hours: May 26 - October 8: 7 a.m.- dusk Winter: 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Laser Show occurs at dark, from Memorial Day weekend through Native American Day (also known as Columbus Day.)
Fees: Under $10
Reviews of Crazy Horse Memorial
By joebensimo September 03, 2008 | Son: Age 15, Daughter: Age 18
What we loved:
We visited the Crazy Horse Memorial a few years ago. It was not part of our plans for our limited time in the area. I figured we could just look at the mountain carving from the highway. However, several members of the extended family that came with us wanted to go. Looking back, I now view our visit to Crazy Horse as the highlight of that vacation. Read More
By jloxtercamp June 17, 2008 | central minnesota
By csting77ray June 08, 2008 | Derby, KS
What we loved:
What we didn't love:
How some people misunderstand its purpose
My family and I just returned from our annual vacation to South Dakota. We go every June to visit the Black Hills and Crazy Horse.br/br/I wish that more people would take the time to explore Crazy Horse and its history. In 1968 a sculptor by the name of Korczak Ziolkowski was approached by Red Cloud, a Lakota Oglala indian chief, to build a memorial to his people. Crazy Horse was chosen because he never surrendered, never signed a treaty, never even held the pen in his hand. He was captured by soldiers and stabbed in the back. Red Cloud and his people wanted the "white man to know that we have heroes too". After the Native Americans were pushed from their land, many of them fought back out of fear, starvation, abuse by the "white man", and a longing for the lands and culture that had been robbed from them. When Crazy Horse was captured, he was asked, "where are your lands now?", he replied, "my lands are where my dead lie buried". He was a hero to his people, not just the Lakota Oglala but all tribes for his strength of will and bravery to fight for what he believed in and never gave up.br/br/Korczak, the artist that began the dream of his monument in 1968, met his wife on the mountain, raised ten children on the mountain, died on the mountain, and was entombed at its base. This was not just his dream, but his life. His wife and children are carrying on that dream, 7 of the children still work daily on the mountain.br/br/Unlike Rushmore, this is a privately funded project, thats why it is still under construction after all of these years. Korczak didnt want the goverment to have control over this project because he wanted the dream to be realized in its entirety, not ended when they decided that funding it was no longer necessary for those of you who know your Rushmore history you will understand what that means. He knew that for this dream to be realized it had to be done with the contributions of those that believed in his dream and the dream of those that had inspired him.br/br/If you truly understand the meaning of this sculpture, it will bring you to tears just by standing in its shadow.br/br/Sincerely,br/br/Eliza Johnsonbr/Derby, KS Read More