Listing of North Dakota Recreational Facilities
Ivan Gillis




North Dakota

North Dakota is a U.S. state in the Midwestern and northern regions of the United States. It is the nineteenth largest in area, the fourth smallest by population, and the fourth most sparsely populated of the 50 states. North Dakota was admitted to the Union on November 3, 1889, along with its neighboring state, South Dakota. Its capital is Bismarck, and its largest city is Fargo.

In the 21st century, North Dakota's natural resources have played a major role in its economic performance, particularly with the oil extraction from the Bakken formation, which lies beneath the northwestern part of the state. Such development has led to population growth and reduced unemployment.

North Dakota contains the tallest human-made structure in the Western Hemisphere, the KVLY-TV mast.

The geographic center of North America is near the town of RugbyBismarck is the capital of North Dakota, and Fargo is the largest city.

Soil is North Dakota's most precious resource. It is the base of the state's great agricultural wealth. But North Dakota also has enormous mineral resources. These mineral resources include billions of tons of lignite coal. In addition, North Dakota has large oil reserves. Petroleum was discovered in the state in 1951 and quickly became one of North Dakota's most valuable mineral resources. In the early 2000's, the emergence of hydraulic fracturing technologies enabled mining companies to extract huge amounts of oil from the Bakken shale rock formation in the western part of the state.

North Dakota's economy is based more heavily on farming than are the economies of most other states. Many North Dakota factories process farm products or manufacture farm equipment. Many of the state's merchants also rely on agriculture.

North Dakota was named for the Sioux people who once lived in the territory. The Sioux called themselves Dakota or Lakota, meaning allies or friends. One of North Dakota's nicknames is the Peace Garden State. This nickname honors the International Peace Garden, which lies on the state's border with Manitoba, Canada. 

Native American peoples lived in what is now North Dakota for thousands of years before the coming of Europeans. The known tribes included the Mandan people (from around the 11th century), while the first Hidatsa group arrived a few hundred years later. They both assembled in villages on tributaries to Missouri River in what would become the west-central North Dakota. Crow Indians traveled the plains from the west to visit and trade with the related Hidatsas after the split between them - probably in the 17th century. Later came divisions of the Dakota people - the Lakota, the Santee and the Yanktonai. The Assiniboine and the Plains Cree undertook southward journeys to the village Indians, either for trade or for war. The Shoshone Indians in present-day Wyoming and Montana may have carried out attacks on Indian enemies as far east as the Missouri. A group of Cheyennes lived in a village of earth lodges at the lower Sheyenne River (Biesterfeldt Site) for decades in the 18th century. Due to attacks by Crees, Assiniboines and Chippewas armed with fire weapons, they left the area around 1780 and crossed Missouri some time after.[20] A band of the few Sotaio Indians lived east of Missouri River and met the uprooted Cheyennes before the end of the century. They soon followed the Cheyennes across Missouri and lived among them south of Cannonball River. Eventually, the Cheyenne and the Sutaio became one tribe and turned into mounted buffalo hunters with ranges mainly outside North Dakota. Before the middle of the 19th century, the Arikara entered the future state from the south and joined the Mandan and Hidatsa. With time, a number of Indians entered into treaties with the United States. Many of the treaties defined the territory of a specific tribe.

The original North Dakota State Capitol in Bismarck burned to the ground on December 28, 1930. It was replaced by a limestone-faced art-deco skyscraper that still stands today. A round of federal investment and construction projects began in the 1950s, including the Garrison Dam and the Minot and Grand Forks Air Forcebases.

Western North Dakota saw a boom in oil exploration in the late 1970s and early 1980s, as rising petroleum prices made development profitable.[32] This boom came to an end after petroleum prices declined.

In recent years, the state has had lower rates of unemployment than the national average, and increased job and population growth. Much of the growth has been based on development of the Bakken oil fields in the western part of the state. Estimates as to the remaining amount of oil vary, with some estimating over 100 years worth of oil remaining in the area.

For decades, North Dakota's annual murder rate and the violent crime rate was regularly the lowest in the United States. In recent years, however, while still below the national average, crime has risen sharply. In 2016, the violent crime rate was three times higher than in 2004 with the rise mostly occurring in the late 2000s, coinciding with the oil boom era. This happened at a time when the overall US violent crime rate declined slightly. Workers in the oil boom towns have been blamed for much of the increase.

Pow Wows

Social gatherings are known as "powwows" (or wacipis in Lakota/Dakota) continue to be an important part of Native American culture and are held regularly throughout the state. Throughout Native American history, powwows were held, usually in the spring, to rejoice at the beginning of new life and the end of the winter cold. These events brought Native American tribes together for singing and dancing and allowed them to meet with old friends and acquaintances, as well as to make new ones. Many powwows also held religious significance for some tribes. Today, powwows are still a part of the Native American culture and are attended by Natives and non-Natives alike. In North Dakota, the United Tribes International Powwow held each September in the capital of Bismarck, is one of the largest powwows in the United States.

pow wow is an occasion for parades and Native American dancers in regalia, with many dancing styles presented. It is traditional for male dancers to wear regalia decorated with beads, quills, and eagle feathers; male grass dancers wear colorful fringe regalia, and male fancy dancers wear brightly colored feathers. Female dancers dance much more subtly than the male dancers. Fancy female dancers wear cloth, beaded moccasins, and jewelry, while the jingle dress dancer wears a dress made of metal cones. Inter-tribal dances during the powwow, allow everyone (even spectators) can take part in the dancing.

Norwegian and Icelandic influences


Around 1870 many European immigrants from Norway settled in North Dakota's northeastern corner, especially near the Red River. Icelanders also arrived from Canada. Pembina was a town of many Norwegians when it was founded; they worked on family farms. They started Lutheran churches and schools, greatly outnumbering other denominations in the area. This group has unique foods such as lefse and lutefisk. The continent's largest Scandinavian event, Norsk Høstfest, is celebrated each September in Minot's North Dakota State Fair Center, a local attraction featuring art, architecture, and cultural artifacts from all five Scandinavian countries. The Icelandic State Park in Pembina County and an annual Icelandic festival reflect immigrants from that country, who are also descended from Scandinavians.

Old World folk customs have persisted for decades in North Dakota, with the revival of techniques in weaving, silver crafting, and wood carving. Traditional turf-roof houses are displayed in parks; this style originated in Iceland. A stave church is a landmark in Minot. Ethnic Norwegians constitute nearly one-third or 32.3% of Minot's total population and 30.8% of North Dakota's total population.

Germans from Russia

Ethnic Germans who had settled in Russia for several generations grew dissatisfied in the nineteenth century because of economic problems and because of the revocation of religious freedoms for Mennonites and Hutterites. By 1900, about 100,000 immigrated to the U.S., settling primarily in North Dakota, South Dakota, Kansas, and Nebraska. The south-central part of North Dakota became known as "the German-Russian triangle". By 1910, about 60,000 ethnic Germans from Russia lived in Central North Dakota. They were Lutherans and Roman Catholics who had kept many German customs of the time when their ancestors immigrated to Russia. They were committed to agriculture. Traditional iron cemetery grave markers are a famous art form practiced by ethnic Germans.

Fine and performing arts

North Dakota's major fine art museums and venues include the Chester Fritz AuditoriumEmpire Arts Center, the Fargo TheatreNorth Dakota Museum of Art, and the Plains Art Museum. The Bismarck-Mandan Symphony OrchestraFargo-Moorhead Symphony OrchestraGreater Grand Forks Symphony OrchestraMinot Symphony Orchestra and Great Plains Harmony Chorus are full-time professional and semi-professional musical ensembles that perform concerts and offer educational programs to the community.

Agriculture is North Dakota's largest industry, although petroleum, food processing, and technology are also major industries. Its growth rate is about 4.1%. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis the economy of North Dakota had a gross domestic product of $55.180 billion in the second quarter of 2018. The per capita income was $34,256,when measured from 2013-2017 by the United States Department of Commerce. The three-year median household income from 2013–2017 was $61,285.

North Dakota is the only state with a state-owned bank, the Bank of North Dakota in Bismarck, and a state-owned flour mill, the North Dakota Mill and Elevator in Grand Forks. These were established by the NPL before World War II.

Fargo is home to the second-largest campus of Microsoft with 1,700 employees, and employs several hundred in Grand Forks.

As of December 2018, the state's unemployment rate is among the lowest in the nation at 2.7%. It has not reached 5 percent since 1987. At end of 2010, the state per capita income was ranked 17th in the nation, the biggest increase of any state in a decade from rank 38th. The reduction in the unemployment rate and growth in per capita income is attributable to the oil boom in the state. Due to a combination of oil-related development and investing in technology and service industries, North Dakota has had a budget surplus every year since the 2008 market crash.

Since 1976, the highest that North Dakota's unemployment rate has reached is just 6.2%, recorded in 1983. Every U.S. state except neighboring South Dakota has had a higher unemployment rate during that period.

North Dakota is considered the least visited state, owing, in part, to its not having a major tourist attraction. Nonetheless, tourism is North Dakota's third largest industry, contributing more than $3 billion into the state's economy annually. Outdoor attractions like the 144-mile Maah Daah Hey Trail and activities like fishing and hunting attract visitors. The state is known for the Lewis & Clark Trail and being the winter camp of the Corps of Discovery. Areas popular with visitors include Theodore Roosevelt National Park in the western part of the state. The park often exceeds 475,000 visitors each year.

Regular events in the state that attract tourists include Norsk Høstfest in Minot, billed as North America's largest Scandinavian festival; the Medora Musical; and the North Dakota State Fair. The state also receives a significant number of visitors from the neighboring Canadian provinces of Manitoba and Saskatchewan, particularly when the exchange rate is favorable.

Historically, North Dakota was populated by the MandanHidatsaLakota, and Ojibwe, and later by the Sanish and Métis. Today, five federally recognized tribes within the boundaries of North Dakota have independent, sovereign relationships with the federal government and territorial reservations:

·       Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara NationFort Berthold Reservation;

·       Sisseton Wahpeton OyateLake Traverse Indian Reservation;

·       Standing Rock SiouxStanding Rock Indian Reservation;

·       Spirit Lake TribeSpirit Lake Reservation; and

·       Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa IndiansTurtle Mountain Reservation.

The state has 11 public colleges and universities, five tribal community colleges, and four private schools. The largest institutions are North Dakota State University and the University of North Dakota.

The higher education system consists of the following institutions:

North Dakota University System (public institutions):

·       Bismarck State College in Bismarck

·       Dickinson State University in Dickinson

·       Lake Region State College in Devils Lake

·       Mayville State University in Mayville

·       Minot State University in Minot

·       Dakota College at Bottineau in Bottineau

·       North Dakota State University in Fargo

·       North Dakota State College of Science in Wahpeton & Fargo

·       University of North Dakota in Grand Forks

·       Valley City State University in Valley City

·       Williston State College in Williston

Tribal institutions:

·       Cankdeska Cikana Community College in Fort Totten

·       Fort Berthold Community College in New Town

·       Sitting Bull College in Fort Yates

·       Turtle Mountain Community College in Belcourt

·       United Tribes Technical College in Bismarck

Private institutions:

·       University of Jamestown in Jamestown

·       Rasmussen College in Fargo and Bismarck

·       Trinity Bible College in Ellendale

·       University of Mary in Bismarck

Notable people

·       Lynn Anderson, country music singer.

·       Sam Anderson, actor.

·       Brian Bohrer, minister and author.

·       James F. Buchli, former NASA astronaut.

·       Quentin N. Burdick, former U.S. Senator, third longest-serving Senator among current members of this body.

·       Warren Christopher, former U.S. Secretary of State, diplomat and lawyer.

·       Shannon Curfman, American blues-rock guitarist and singer.

·       Angie DickinsonGolden Globe-winning television and film actress.

·       Josh DuhamelEmmy Award-winning actor and former male fashion model.

·       Carl Ben Eielsonaviatorbush pilot and explorer.

·       CariDee English, winner of Cycle 7 on America's Next Top Model. Host of Pretty Wicked.

·       Louise Erdrich, Native American author of novels, poetry, and children's books.

·       Darin Erstad, MLB all-star and World Series Champion.

·       Travis Hafner, MLB Designated Hitter for the Cleveland Indians.

·       Richard Hieb, former NASA astronaut.

·       Clint HillUnited States Secret Service agent who was in the presidential motorcade during the assassination of John F. Kennedy.

·       Virgil Hill, former WBA World Cruiserweight champion and Olympic boxer.

·       David C. Jones, 9th chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff.

·       Gordon Kahl, tax protestor best known for the Medina shootout in 1983.

·       Chuck Klosterman, writer, journalist, critic, humorist, and essayist whose work often focuses on pop culture.

·       Louis L'Amour, author of primarily Western fiction.

·       Jonny LangGrammy-winning blues guitarist and singer.

·       Peggy Leejazz and traditional pop singer and songwriter.

·       Nicole Linkletter, winner of Cycle 5 on "America's Next Top Model".

·       Kellan Lutz, actor who portrays Emmett Cullen in Twilight and New Moon. Former male fashion model.

·       Roger Marisright fielder in Major League Baseball and former single season home run record holder.

·       Cara MundMiss America 2018.

·       Phil Jackson, former basketball coach who won 11 NBA championships in his coaching career.

·       Thomas McGrath, poet and political activist.

·       Michael H. Miller, 61st Superintendent of the United States Naval Academy

·       Mancur Olson, economist.

·       Alan Ritchson, participant in 3rd season of American Idol, singer, model and actor.

·       Sakakawea, who joined Lewis and Clark on their expedition.

·       Ed Schultz, host of The Ed Schultz Show.

·       Eric SevareidCBS news journalist.

·       Ann SothernOscar nominated film and television actress.

·       Richard St. Clair, Harvard-educated composer of modern classical music.

·       Shadoe Stevens, host of American Top 40.

·       Bobby Vee, pop music singer.

·       Lawrence Welk, musician, accordion player, bandleader, and television impresario.

·       Wiz Khalifa, hip hop artist.

·       Carson Wentz, professional football player for the Philadelphia Eagles.

·       Connor McGovern, professional football player for the Denver Broncos.

·       Griffin Neal, professional football player for the New Orlean Saints.













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