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How Does Sioux Falls See Itself?

sioux falls word cloud
John Tierney and Deborah Fallows/The Atlantic

Those of us who live and work in Sioux Falls know we have a great city to call home. The choices, the opportunities, the big city in a small town feel, the world class hospitals, the new Events Center opening this fall, relatively low crime rates and more are why we continue to live here.

But how does an ‘outsider’ look at us? Deborah Fallows is traveling the country for The Atlantic and visiting cities, including Sioux Falls, and asking people she encounters to describe their town in a word or two. She’s created a ‘Word Cloud’ for Sioux Falls above that includes the phrases she encountered most often.

Fallows writes about the growing ethnic diversity of Sioux Falls that she encountered in her trip to our town and writes about who we are, what we do, where we work. She also learned all about “East River/West River” in her short time here which just continues to show the divide of our beautiful state.

But what resonated the most about Fallows’ article is her summation: This is very simple, and I also heard it a thousand times: I love Sioux Falls.  There is something very plain-spoken and true that, for me, pretty well sums up how people talk about their town.

I have friends visit from other parts of the state and other parts of the country. I talk to road musicians who come through on a semi-regular basis, and to a person, they’re all taken with the lifestyle we live here. How it feels like a big city and a small town at the same time and I can’t tell you how many of these people tell me “I could live in Sioux Falls” and “I see why you never left”.

How would YOU describe Sioux Falls in a word or a phrase? Many of the people Fallows talked to took the words right out of my mouth: I Love Sioux Falls.


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