Plastered No More

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If you grew up in Iowa or Minnesota in the 1960s, and your next door neighbors took a Black Hills vacation, you maybe didn't recognize their car when it returned. The car would be plastered with bright bumper stickers from every cave, gravity house, and curio shop the neighbors visited. It happened like this: as soon as a family disappeared inside a tourist attraction, 14 year-old mercenaries descended on their car. Some attractions had the kids simply wire bumper stickers to fenders. More aggressive businesses used an industrial-strength glue that would likely outlive the car's tires, and possibly its engine. All the way back to Iowa or Minnesota the car was a rolling billboard advertising the Black Hills. Thankfully, modern travel websites make it so bumper sticker promotion is no longer practiced. That's good for a car's trade-in value, and it's safer for 14 year-olds, once put on the front lines in the campaign for generating South Dakota tourist traffic.

Follow Paul Higbee:

Paul writes about the Black Hills for in-flight airline publications, academic magazines, South Dakota Magazine, public TV, newspapers and websites. He is the author of five books, all Black Hills themed. He lives in the Black Hills. He's obviously no Renaissance Man with varied interests, but if the Black Hills are your thing, he's your guy.

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