Sioux Falls (population 153,888) is a city in South Dakota. It is the county seat of Minnehaha County. More than a quarter of the total population of the state resides within the greater Sioux Falls metropolitan area.
Settlement started in the mid-19th century when land speculators in what was then the Dakota Territory noticed the water power potential of the area along the Big Sioux River cascades. During 1876 Sioux Falls became incorporated as a town. During 1883 Sioux Falls was granted its city charter. This happened in the era of the railroads. Growth and prosperity accompanied the arrival of the railroad within the city. During the modern time, the economy of Sioux Falls was based on agricultural industries. The establishment of the John Morrell meat packing plant kicked off the city's industrial era during the year 1909.
More recently, the city of Sioux Falls has had to diversify its economy, focusing especially on retail, finance and health care. Various finance companies have a presence within the city of Sioux Falls, such as Bank First, Citigroup, Great Western Bank, HSBC, Wells Fargo, Total Card Inc., Premier Bank Card and Capital Card Services. The local health care providers are major employers in the city. Sanford Health is the largest employer in the city of Sioux Falls and Avera Health is 2nd biggest. Retail trade is a significant sector. The city of Sioux Falls is home to 3,200 retail outlets employing around 20% percent of the labor force.
Manufacturing and food processing are still vital to the city's economy. Sioux Falls companies create such things as fabricated steel, computer components, electronic test equipment, concrete items and corrugated boxes. Main manufacturing businesses include Bell Incorporated, Hutchinson Technology, Gage Brothers and John Morrel & Company.
The city of Sioux Falls provides a wide range of arts and entertainment. The city itself is filled with many historical monuments and statues. There are actually many galleries and museums, like for instance the Delbridge Museum of Natural History, that is believed to have among the best collections of mounted wildlife in the nation. For those who are into the history of medicine, the Sioux Empire Medical Museum offers visitors with an overview of medical development through displays dating from the early 1900s. The Medical Museum is situated at Sioux Valley Hospital.
The Great Bear Recreation Park is a perfect place for outdoor enthusiasts to enjoy some cross county and downhill skiing. They have beginner and more advanced slopes. The city's calendar of events consists of a Jazz and Blues Festival that takes place at Yankton Trail Park. Thousands attend this outdoor musical event held each and every July.