Located in Brown County, the city of Aberdeen is a thriving hub of shopping centers, service industries, manufacturing plants, professional facilities, and high-quality school systems. It’s perhaps most widely known for its fine retail establishments, eclectic shops, and friendly local merchants. More than 80,000 people flock to Aberdeen from Northeastern South Dakota and southern North Dakota to shop at the sprawling Lakewood Mall and the outlying shopping opportunities. Historic downtown Aberdeen—6th Avenue, in particular—offers a variety of eclectic shops, distinctive landmarks, casual cafés, and fine cuisine.
Originally inhabited by the Sioux Indians, the city now known as Aberdeen became a site of fur trading posts in the 1820s, which attracted the first Caucasian settlers to the area. Constructed around newly developing railroad systems in 1881, Aberdeen was dubbed the “Hub City of the Dakotas” due to the trio of railroad depots intersecting in the town. These very railroads contributed to the city’s quick growth and prosperity. Aberdeen took over Columbia’s designation as county seat of Brown County in 1889.
Visitors and locals enjoy abundant outdoor recreational activities in Aberdeen. Sports enthusiasts have ample access to hunting, skiing, boating, snowmobiling, and golfing, as well as the fast-paced action at the Brown County Speedway. College sporting events and youth sports programs also draw large crowds. Nature lovers appreciate the picturesque park systems, including Wylie Park and the Sand Lake National Wildlife Refuge. The characters and scenes of nearby Storybook Land cater to children’s’ imaginations. A network of substantial lakes provides plentiful fishing and plenty of scenic beauty. The annual Brown County Fair, held just outside Aberdeen, draws thousands of South Dakotan’s each year.
Arts & Culture
Those with discriminating aesthetic tastes won’t be disappointed by Aberdeen. A surprisingly large number of art galleries showcase the masterpieces of local and international artists. Outdoor festivals, such as the weekend-long event Arts-in-the-Park, provide creators with many opportunities to set up booths and sell their wares. The Granary brings together an eclectic mix of cultural exhibits in a scenic, park-like setting, while the Aberdeen Community Theater performs an array of dramatic productions throughout the year. For music lovers, Aberdeen’s Community Concert Association schedules local appearances by renowned musicians.