By Jim Speirs, Executive Director, Arts South Dakota

As the holiday shopping season approaches with the speed of a runaway train, we are being warned about this year’s unusual supply chain woes, as stores struggle to stock shelves. Every industry from auto production to dog grooming is prone to supply chain slowdowns, shortages and unavailabilities. But there’s one way you can do your holiday shopping early, support your neighbors and find unique gift ideas—purchase your gifts from local artists and arts organizations.

It’s easy to give the gift of South Dakota creativity. Choose a book by one of our state’s authors or photographers, jewelry created by a local artisan, a framed print or painting by a South Dakota artist or tickets to a special performance—all gifts that will be enjoyed throughout the year.

Gifts reflecting our state’s creative culture are not hard to find. Nearly every bookstore in South Dakota has an “in-state” or “regional” section, filled with our state’s writers sharing their stories, telling tales of the past or breaking new ground with exciting fiction or poetry. Museum gift shops are perfect places to find South Dakota artists’ work, in an incredible range of prices, sizes, colors and subject matter. Galleries, both public and private, show and sell South Dakota visual arts. You can find furniture, sculpture, prints, drawings and notecards created here in South Dakota by people you know. And don’t forget albums and holiday performances by South Dakota musicians. 

These gifts don’t require shipping from faraway places, won’t be subject to delays in seaports, don’t clog the supply chain or delivery systems and are an especially creative form of “buying locally,” a goal many of us have all year long.

Giving the gift of South Dakota art shows your support for the artists who are living and working in our state—and it makes this a place where artists are encouraged and can make a living. You will enhance our cultural heritage, advance the appreciation of the arts and spark new ideas for the recipient. That’s quite an impactful holiday gift! 

For more gift ideas—or to make a holiday gift donation to Arts South Dakota—visit