Happy Wednesday! Megan here.

First things first: This issue is brought to you by Dorothy's List.

  • Dorothy’s List is where you find businesses and organizations with a track record of being LGBTQ+ friendly. Friends of Dorothy’s back up their support with policies and action. They offer more than just symbols of support, they act on it — not just during Pride month. Learn more and find a list of businesses here.

Weather check: Heatin' up (with a chance of storms)

 🙌 A Little Help update: You guys – in our first week we've already raised more than $600 to help Journey of Hope! Now, let's double it this week. ;)

  • Journey of Hope helps people through the simple act of providing basic hygiene products. You can learn more about our effort to help them out here, and get more background on the nonprofit itself here. And then, come back, click this link and toss a few bucks their way. P.S. Mention Sioux Falls Simplified in the "notes" section of your donation so they know we sent ya!

This week, I've got a look at where the new Whittier Middle School will be, as well as which neighborhoods will attend the new Marcella LeBeau Elementary School. You'll also find the latest on how the City Council is approaching discussions on how to price passes for new indoor pools and recreation centers.

And now, news:


Council divided on how much to charge to visit new indoor pools

Simplified: A family pass to the city's new indoor pools and recreation centers could cost as much as $88 per month, depending on how much City Council is willing to subsidize the new facilities. Here's a look at the latest discussion.

Why it matters

  • The financial modeling for the new pools was the main reason the council decided to delay voting on a proposed $77 million bond to fund new pools earlier this year.
  • Right now, the city pays about $1.8 million each year to subsidize existing city pools. The addition of two new indoor pool and recreation centers – one at Frank Olson Park and the other at the Sanford Wellness Center at Tea/Ellis Road – will see those costs increase.
  • The debate, though, is how much of the cost of operating the new recreation centers should be absorbed by the city and how much should be passed on to users via entrance fees.
"The fee schedule (for parks and recreation) has been largely unchanged since 1996," said Brett Kollars, assistant parks director.

Tell me more


Super Simplified Stories

  • City Council approves new bus routes. City Council on Tuesday approved new bus routes for the Sioux Area Metro public transit. The change brings fewer fixed routes operating more frequently, as well as citywide access to on-demand busing services. Find more background on those changes here.
  • Board approves site for new Whittier Middle School. Sioux Falls' oldest school building is one step closer to having a replacement after school board members on Monday voted to approve the site for the future building. You can find more background on that here, but essentially the board chose the site that would impact the least number of homes.
    • The new building will be on what's now the Whittier football field, and the goal is to build by 2030. In the meantime, the district will need to purchase 29 homes and one church to make room for the new building. (That's about 10 to 20 fewer homes getting torn down than in other versions of the plan).
    • Superintendent Jane Stavem also made a point to note that the district will take into account Whittier's historic neighborhood in the design of the building. She said it will "look like it's been there for longer than what some of our brand new buildings look like."
  • Juneteenth Grand Marshal announced. Chet Jones, a prominent community leader and advocate for social justice, will serve as the Grand Marshal for the Juneteenth Sioux Falls 2024 celebration. That celebration kicks off at 10 a.m. Saturday. More details here.
  • Boundaries set for new elementary school. The Sioux Falls School Board on Monday voted unanimously to approve which neighborhoods will feed into the new Marcella LeBeau Elementary School in the northwest part of town. Here's a comparison of the previous and new boundaries, as well as a zoomed in picture of the new boundaries:


Stuff to do: June 12-18

  • Check out Teapot Days. Small-town festival season is in full swing, and this weekend it's Teapot Days down in Tea. Starting with a picnic Wednesday evening, there's a weekend full of events including live music, a carnival, a motorcycle show, a dart tournament and a street dance. Find a full lineup of events here.
  • Find your zen with a hen. Joy Collective Yoga is teaming up with Fruit of the Coop to host a "Yoga on the Farm" class every Wednesday evening this summer, starting this week. And, bonus, you can stock up on farm-fresh eggs while you're there. Details/tickets here.
  • Celebrate Juneteenth. The annual Sioux Falls Juneteenth Festival will kick off at 11 a.m. Saturday at the Avera Health IT building downtown. There'll be food trucks, vendor booths, bouncy houses, and live music. Grammy Award-Winning Artist Cocoa Sarai will be performing on stage at 4 p.m. More details here.
  • Don't forget Dad. It's Father's Day on Sunday, and there are a few ways to celebrate locally. You can grab brunch, take him golfing, sample some yummy food or enjoy a fancy steakhouse dinner.
  • Get some bronze. Nope, not a sun tan, literal molten iron. BronzeAge Art Casting is hosting the "Sun Pour" event on Saturday night starting after 8 p.m. in celebration of the summer solstice. You can stop by earlier in the day for a iron tile workshop to create a design and watch it get filled with molten iron later in the evening. More details here.


What I'm falling for this week:


More Simplified Stories

How the city is looking to redevelop the next bit of the rail yard
The city this week announced plans to bring a new, nearly $100 million development to downtown, coinciding with the sale of a segment of the railyard. Here’s what you need to know.
How deodorant and clean socks can inspire hope
Last year, Journey of Hope distributed 18,000 hygiene products and partnered with 33 agencies in Sioux Falls – including 11 schools.
Find S.D. primary election results for the Sioux Falls area
The 2025 South Dakota Legislature makeup is looking a bit clearer after Tuesday’s primary election


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Reach out

What story do you want to see simplified? Falling for something local? Send any news tips, attaboys, missed typos or sunscreen to megan@sfsimplified.com.

Thank you

Thank you to Sioux Falls Simplified sponsors, including Dakota Adventure Supply, the Sioux Falls Development Foundation, Panther Premier Print Solutions, Barre3 Sioux Falls, Midco, the Great Plains Zoo, and the Sioux Metro Growth Alliance. When you support them, you're also supporting Sioux Falls Simplified.

Special thanks to Dorothy's List!

It's a great time to become a 'Friend of Dorothy' during Pride Month. For more info on how to add your business to the list, email toto@dorothyslist.org.