Who said dreams don’t come true? And who ever said South Dakota was just for the buffalo? Pack your bags, gather your kids, and put your thrill-seeking leather pants on because LibertyLand amusement park is coming to Rapid City in 2026, and it’s set to change the Dakotan landscape forever.
If Mount Rushmore was the appetizer, then LibertyLand USA will be the full banquet meal. Nothing screams ‘Merica more than a massive amusement park nestled in the foothills of the Black Hills. This soon-to-be monolith of merriment is set to be the largest family entertainment and residential destination in South Dakota. Yeah, you heard that right, a residential destination. Because who wouldn’t want to wake up to the joyful screams of gleeful amusement park-goers every morning?
The Rapid City council is not messing around. They unanimously approved this veritable Disneyland of the Dakotas. The plans are as ambitious as they are dazzling. We’re talking an indoor waterpark for those frigid winter months when you still crave a little splish-splash. A hotel and conference center for when you need to discuss corporate synergies while also riding roller coasters. Oh, and lest we forget, an indoor/outdoor amphitheater for those who prefer their entertainment with a side of fresh air.
But wait, there’s more! You can get your American road trip on with a themed RV Resort. And for all you urbanites out there, there’s “Liberty Village”, a mixed-use neighborhood providing housing, retail and dining.
The economics of it all seem too good to be true. Tom Johnson, the President and CEO of Elevate Rapid City, is practically salivating at the potential windfall. “We know it’s going to bring hundreds of millions of dollars of potential tax revenues,” says Johnson. And let’s not forget about jobs. According to Johnson, up to two thousand of them, not to mention, two to three thousand units of housing.
The park is set to be built in North Rapid City near the intersection of Lacrosse Street and Mall Drive. So, for all you amusement park junkies, three years might seem like a long wait. But remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither will LibertyLand. But when it’s done, South Dakota is going to be the go-to destination for thrill-seekers and family vacationers alike. So here’s to LibertyLand, the next jewel in America’s amusement crown.