The Falls of the Big Sioux River

Sioux Falls, South Dakota is an easy city to promote. We have everything from outdoor adventures to shopping and culture. We take pride in our green and open spaces with over 70 parks within Sioux Falls.

The gem of our city is Falls Park located near the downtown district. The park covers approximately 123 acres and is centered around “The Falls of theBig Sioux River.” Each second, an average of 7,400 gallons of water drop 100 feet over the course of the falls.

The first Big Sioux River Greenway was adopted in April, 1975. The objectives were parks, trails, flood control, picnicking, archery, nature study, camping, motorized recreation, horseback riding, winter recreation, water activities, and historic sites. The second Big Sioux River Greenway Plan was adopted in April of 1987. It had seven goals and 39 items of concern.  Nineteen have been completed and others are still in the planning stages and have yet to be completed. Today, the River Greenway is best known for the 20-plus mile bike trail surrounding our city. The River Greenway project continues with construction on the east bank of the Big Sioux River with plans for the future on continued improvements.

The Falls of the Big Sioux River have been a focus of life in the region throughout history. Native American people were the first to visit the falls and bring stories of them to European explorers.  The Falls have been the center of recreation and industry since the city of Sioux Falls was founded in 1856. See the city’s namesake as well as some of the first buildings built in Sioux Falls.

Falls Park features a visitor information center with a gift shop, a five story viewing tower offering a panoramic view of the park and the Overlook Café, which offers planned meal options for large groups. Falls Park is also home to a FREE Sound and Light Show featuring information about the history of Sioux Falls and is shown nightly at 9:30pm, weather-permitting, from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

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