Summer Solstice




Do you know what day is coming up this week? The summer solstice! (Summer is my favorite season in South Dakota.) I met a couple of interns at the Governor’s picnic that asked me what kind of things there is to do in Pierre during the summer. I started thinking about the summer activities that South Dakota has to offer for those interns who are new to South Dakota and to South Dakotan interns who wonder what is out there for them to do. I wrote up a list of 10 fun activities to do in South Dakota during the summer.

First, a few quick facts about the summer solstice:

• The solstice is when the sun reaches its farthest point north of the equator, and it signifies the longest day of the year.
• Why isn’t the summer solstice the hottest day of the year? Earth’s atmosphere, land, and oceans absorb part of the incoming energy from the sun and store it then release it back as heat at various rates. Water is slower to heat (or cool) than air or land. At the time of the summer solstice, the Northern Hemisphere receives the most energy (highest intensity) from the sun due to the angle of sunlight and day length; however, the land and oceans are still relatively cool, due to spring’s temperatures, so the maximum heating effect on air temperature is not felt just yet. Eventually, the land as well as oceans will release stored heat from the summer solstice back into the atmosphere; this usually results in the year’s hottest temperatures appearing in late July, August, or later, depending on latitude and other factors. This effect is called seasonal temperature lag.
• Solstice comes from Latin roots: (sol) meaning sun and (stitium) meaning stop because the sun seems to stop at this time.
• This year the solstice happens on June 20 at 11:04 p.m. for Mountain Time Zone and on June 21 at 12:04 a.m. for Central Time Zone.
• In temperate regions, the sun is higher in the sky throughout the day with its rays striking Earth at a more direct angle during the solstice.
• The Southern Hemisphere’s winter solstice happens during the Northern Hemisphere’s summer solstice.

Now, my list of 10 fun activities to do in South Dakota during the summer with URL links:

1. Have some fun camping and fishing at one of the state parks in South Dakota:
2. Attend Oahe Days in Pierre on June 21-23:
3. Walk through Storybook Land in Aberdeen:
4. See the historic Mount Rushmore:
5. Go swimming in Wild Water West in Sioux Falls:
6. Visit the historic Deadwood:
7. Tour through Cosmo’s Mystery Area in Rapid City:
8. Watch a hydroplane racing event in Chamberlain/Oacoma:
9. Drive your car through Bear Country in Rapid City:
10. Experience the scenery in Prairie Berry Winery in Hill City:

Explore the unexpected, South Dakota interns, with South Dakota summer activities!
Thank you for reading!

Mount Rushmore in 2007.

Mount Rushmore in 2007.

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Photoshop Tutorial Experience

Thursday, June 13, 2013
Photoshop Class Experience

Today I went to a Photoshop CS5 Level 1 Class. I wanted to learn more about how to alter images to make marketing materials throughout my internship look more interesting and captivating. I have had some Photoshop experience in the past, but the program has always looked intimidating to me because the list goes on and on about all of the capabilities it can do; I have always wanted to learn the fundamentals of Photoshop from a person.

The instructor was friendly, and she explained a little about copyright requirements, graphic types, working with layers, enhancing images, and saving images for web and print.

Some Photoshop tips:
1) Using copyright images from the internet is illegal—always ask the photographer/illustrator for permission. It’s better to use your own photos, buy stock photos, or adobe’s free photos.
2) CYMK colors are for printing purposes and RGB colors are for web purposes.
3) Working with individual layers allows you to select and manipulate images/text more easily
4) is a great resource for Photoshop tutorials.
5) The more key shortcuts you learn, the better. I learned Ctrl + D is for deselecting an image and Ctrl + T is for transforming an image.

I am thankful the Bureau of Human Resources gave me the opportunity to attend the Photoshop class, and with my internship I will have the opportunity to practice the skills I learned from the class.

Thank you for reading! =)


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Picnic Day for SD’s summer interns

[From left to right] Matthew Miller, Amy Berning, Sydney Thompson, Governor Dennis Daugaard

[From left to right]
Matthew Miller, Amy Berning, Sydney Thompson, Governor Dennis Daugaard

I started off the day with the Cultural Heritage Museum. I cannot remember the last time I went to the museum (probably seven years ago?), but I thought I check it out to learn more about South Dakota’s history. I learned that if I read everything in the museum, it would take a total of 5 hours. I then met two interns from the Sioux Falls area. They were very friendly, and I took some photos of them while they were interacting in the museum.

I toured the museum myself, and I really enjoyed all of the interactive activities, such as putting an old wooden desk together, pretending to be a stakeholder for the Oahe Dam, milking a fake cow, and pretending to be a telephone operator (Who doesn’t like to eavesdrop on conversations?).

This afternoon I attended the governor’s picnic, and I really enjoyed my conversation with two interns (Amy and Matt) while we were eating lunch. We also had the opportunity to take a picture with Governor Dennis Daugaard. The lunch was from Qdoba, and I thought it was absolutely delicious (kudos to the caterers).

The tour of the State Capitol was my last stop for the day, and I was very happy the tour guide was Pierre’s very own Uncle Matt. He’s such a friendly guy, and he was incredibly knowledgeable about the details of the State Capitol. He informed us that there are a limited number of blue tiles on the floor because each tile represents one of the floor tiles’ artists. He also informed us about an upside down marble rail post. Nobody knows for sure why one of the rail posts is upside-down. My favorite part of the tour was seeing the governor’s office. Uncle Matt also talked about all of the restorations that people are doing to make South Dakota’s State Capitol as authentic as the original.

Well, I had a lovely day, and I’m so thankful that South Dakota State Government provides opportunities for interns to further our careers and meet new people.

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Summer intern for Bureau of Human Resources

Sydney Thompson

Sydney Thompson

Hi there!

My name is Sydney Thompson, and I am currently a marketing intern for Bureau of Human Resources. I just graduated from St. Cloud State University in St. Cloud, MN, in May with a degree in Mass Communications (emphasis in public relations) and a minor in Spanish. I will be attending Colorado State University in Fort Collins, CO, in the fall to pursue a master’s degree in Public Communications & Technology.

I applied for this marketing internship because I want to gain more writing and graphic design experience, and I want to help South Dakota’s government recruit talented individuals.

Feel free to follow this blog as well as liking SD Careers’s facebook page and following us on Twitter @careerssd.

Thank you!

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