South Dakota’s Oakwood Lakes State Park To Host Winter Events

South Dakota’s Oakwood Lakes State Park To Host Winter Events

South Dakota Fish, Game & Parks
South Dakota Fish, Game & Parks

VOLGA, S.D. –-( Oakwood Lake State Park hosts the Kool Kids’ Klassic Fishing Derby and the Groundhog Day Cross-Country Ski Tour on Saturday, Jan. 29, and Sunday, Jan. 30.

Children younger than 14 are invited to take part in the Kool Kids’ Klassic Ice Fishing Derby. Registration for the derby is $2 and will take place at the park shop at 11 a.m. CST.

The first 150 entries will receive free fishing poles made by park staff. Bait is furnished, and event staff will drill holes in the ice as needed. Fishing will take place in designated areas from noon to 2 p.m., with weigh-in to follow.

Winners will be announced at the 3 p.m. awards ceremony. Snacks will be available throughout the day, and numerous door-prize drawings will be held.

The 31st Annual Groundhog Day Cross-Country Ski Race and the Sons of Norway Barnelopet Children’s Ski Run feature a 5-kilometer, non-competitive poker run, a 10-kilometer competitive race and a kick-sled race. Registration fees of $8 for adults and $3 for youth (17 and younger) applies to the ski race/poker run.

Prizes will be awarded to winners in each age group. The top poker hands, youngest and oldest skier and most colorful ski costume will also earn awards.

The day also features the 24th Annual Sons of Norway Barnelopet Children’s Ski Run. This event is free for kids younger than 13.

Registration for the ski events begins at the park shop at 12:30 p.m. The race will start at 1:30 p.m. Cookies, hot chocolate and various Norwegian treats will be served throughout the day. Ski rentals for the event are available from Sioux River Bicycles and Fitness. In the event of no snow, a walk will be held in place of the race.

“These events are great ways for the entire family to get active, get outside and have fun at the park,” said Randy Pitts, Manager of Oakwood Lakes State Park. “The park offers many opportunities for outdoor winter recreation that families can enjoy.”

The fishing derby is sponsored the City of Brookings, Brookings Engraving, Brookings Radio, Gas ‘N’ More, Brookings Hy-Vee Food Store, Porter’s Bait, 1481 Grille, South Dakota Division of Parks and Recreation, and Sports Connection.

The cross-country ski tour is sponsored by the Sons of Norway, Sioux River Bicycles and Fitness, Brookings Radio, 1481 Grille, Brookings Engraving and the state Division of Parks and Recreation.

Park entrance licenses are required to enter the park and will be available for purchase. For additional information on the weekend’s events, call Oakwood Lakes State Park at 605-627-5441. For a calendar of other upcoming special events in South Dakota’s state parks and recreation areas, visit