City of Mobridge, South Dakota

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December 5, 2016

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2017 Recipients of South Dakota Governor's Awards for the Arts and Living Indian Treasure Award Announced.

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Arts South Dakota and the South Dakota Arts Council will celebrate the 23rd Governor's Awards in the Arts on Wednesday, February 15, 2017 at the Ramkota Hotel & Conference Center in Pierre.

Recipients of this year's awards are: Ward Whitwam, Sioux Falls, for Distinction in Creative Achievement; Graham & Anna Marie Thatcher, Rapid City, for Outstanding Support of the Arts by an Individual; Steve Babbitt, Rapid City, for Outstanding Service to Arts Education; Mobridge City Council, Mobridge, for Outstanding Support of the Arts by an Organization or Business; and an Honorary Award for Outstanding Service to the Arts Community will be presented to Michael Pangburn, Pierre. The 2017 South Dakota Living Indian Treasure Award will be presented to Bryan Akipa, Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate, Sisseton.

The biennial awards presentation banquet honors the achievements of South Dakota's fine artists and arts leaders. Award winners are selected from nominations submitted in the four categories reflecting the work of professional artists and arts educators, and the support of individuals, businesses and organizations that encompass South Dakota's arts community. The Living Indian Treasure Award is presented to a South Dakota Native American elder, in recognition of preservation of excellence in traditional Indian art forms or breaks new ground through innovations based in traditional forms.

Festivities will begin with a reception at 5:00 pm on February 15, followed by a banquet honoring the award winners. Governor Dennis Daugaard will deliver the State of the Arts Address and present the 2017 Governor's Awards in the Arts. Arts highlights include the Jim Szana Trio and an exhibit curated by Racing Magpie, Rapid City.

Visit for more information, including biographical highlights for the recipients of the 2017 Governor's Awards in the Arts and a complete listing of previous award winners.

The Governor's Awards in the Arts are sponsored by Arts South Dakota and the South Dakota Arts Council. South Dakota Arts Council support is provided with funds from the State of South Dakota, through the Department of Tourism and the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional sponsors include Den-Wil Properties, Delta Dental, BankWest, Racing Magpie, VistaComm and South Dakota Public Broadcasting.

The Living Indian Treasure Award is sponsored by Sinte Gleska University, Northern Plains Indian Art Market and Arts South Dakota.

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