Wall Drug Store, South Dakota
Why would anyone travel hundreds of miles for a cold glass of ice water? You might think thirst is the obvious answer. Actually, it’s much more than just wetting one’s whistle that brings millions of people to the famous Wall Drug Store located in the small town of Wall, South Dakota. The "much more" part consists of roadside charm, friendly hospitality, unique shopping experiences and the opportunity to see unusual memorabilia that decorate this large tourist attraction.
During the depression of the 1930's, Ted and Dorothy Hustead started running a typical small town drug store. Dorothy had a brilliant idea to drum up some much needed business. The idea was to put up clever signs with catchy slogans along the road to bring in weary travelers for free ice water. Ted feeling silly about the whole thing was amazed as car after car pulled in looking for those cups of ice water. Besides picking up the free thirst buster, people started buying food and supplies for the rest of their trip. The Hustead’s found success in the middle of nowhere and all the thanks goes to those "silly" signs. Through the years these signs have been erected all over the world letting future travelers know just how many miles they are from Wall Drug.
If you find yourself traveling in the state of South Dakota you must journey onward to this beloved roadside realm of amazement and experience it for yourself! You can ride a giant Jackalope, see a fake Mount Rushmore, almost get eaten by dinosaur, watch kitchy animals come to life for a quarter (check out the YouTube links below), drink a nickel cup of coffee, listen to some singing cowboys, and even buy a few postcards. Of course give yourself plenty of time, because these are just a few of the fun things you’ll find at this place that’s as big as a shopping mall. Just remember as you drink that free glass of ice water that you’re part of a 75-year-old tradition that has made the Wall Drug Store one of America’s first and great roadside attractions.