Menu

Becky Beaton

“When you’ve been here for 20 some years, it becomes your home. We’re basically all family.”

Position: Gift Shop Manager

Responsibilities: Unpack and arrange merchandise in store, order new products

Becky has had quite a history at Reptile Gardens with many different unique experiences. She started working in the miniature horse barn in 1995 by giving pony rides to kids and also worked in the tortoise yard and dressed as Shelly to take pictures with kids and adults. By 1998 she had moved to the bird department where she stayed until 2013, helping with bird shows and training staff. She was in charge of the bird department from 2003-2013, but after having her son, decided she’d offer to move departments.

Each department has offered Becky a different chance to grow and use different skills. While the gift shop allows her to be OCD, the bird department also had its perks. Working in the gift shop gives Becky a new challenge and allows her to play games in her mind to determine whether someone would purchase a product or not and get into the minds of the Guests.

Most rewarding part of the job:
Her time at the bird department was both rewarding and not at the same time:

“Not everybody gets to go out there and say I trained a bald eagle today. Every day is different. We used to do rehab also and it was always a very rewarding, unrewarding job because those days when you would get a bird in and take care of it and be able to release it again, great, but then there were a lot days where you would get bird after bird and you could do nothing for them. It’d be a really heartbreaking but really rewarding thing too.”

Things to know about Becky:


1. She has a stepson and a son she enjoys spending time with.
2. Her kids have grown up in the Reptile Gardens family as well. The Reptile Gardens logo was the first thing her son learned to recognize and her step son is still pictured on one of the billboards.
3. She absolutely adores vultures and has a vulture tattoo. She says they have a lot of fun characteristics that set them apart from other birds and she could go on for hours talking about them.
4. She went to the University of Minnesota then transferred to the School of Mines to get her Pre-Vet degree.
Planning a visit to Reptile Gardens?
Sign up to receive great stuff right in your inbox!

Close

Activities

Main Exhibits

Shows

Shops

Close

Animals

Snakes

Other Reptiles

Amphibians and Bugs

Native to South Dakota

Close

Botanical Gardens

Indoor

Outdoor

Close

About Us

Sky Dome

Step inside the Sky Dome to experience a warm tropical climate while exploring our indoor jungle filled with exotic and unique flora and fauna. 

Rattlesnake Gulch

Try your hand at gemstone sluicing or go on a 3D safari. Our very own old west ghost town as numerous photo opportunities and activities to keep the kids entertained.

Cheyenne's Habitat

Cheyenne the bald eagle has been a permanent resident of Reptile Gardens for 11 years with permission of the US Fish & Wildlife Service.

Maniac's habitat

Maniac is our resident giant saltwater crocodile. At over 16 feet long and1,350pounds, he is one of the largest giant crocodiles in the western hemisphere. If you don't see him at his enclosure inside the SkyDome, make sure to check outside!

Prairie Dog Town

Get down to eye-level with these fuzzy little animals and see firsthand what life is like in a typical prairie dog town!

Methuselah's Playground

Methuselah was a giant Galapagos Tortoise weighing in at over 600 pounds, and a long time resident of Reptile Gardens. His memory lives on at this playground featuring a bronze statue of Methuselah himself. 

Snake Show stage

Get up-close-and-personal with our snake ambassadors in this family-friendly snake handling show.

Gator Show stage

Dozens of Alligators, Crocodiles, and Caimans and one keeper...what could go wrong? Separate fact from fiction in this educational, family-friendly show and get a chance to pet Fluffy, our baby gator!

Bird Show stage

Interact with some of the most exotic birds from around the world at the Bird Show, where they love to show off their beauty and intelligence. 

Gift Shop

Carrying a wide variety of Reptile Gardens souvenirs as well as educational books for every age and a variety of stunning rocks, minerals, and fossils from all over the world.

Green Parrot Cafe

Hungry? Refuel with buffalo burgers, The Maniac burger, Black Mamba Shakes, Indian Tacos, and more!

Giant Tortoise

Don't miss this photo opportunity! Get up-close and personal with these friendly giants who love to have their neck scratched and are great with kids. 

Tortuga Falls

Take a stroll through this meditative garden, gaze into our turtle and koi pond, listen to the waterfalls, and don't miss Darwin the Kookaburra! 

Walking Garden

We're about more than just Reptiles! Our outdoor gardens are beauty to be seen as they change throughout the season and year after year. 

Living Wall

This vertical garden is a wall of color that grows and changes through the Summer season creating striking patterns and unique portraits as it grows. 

Pet A Python

Don't miss your chance to Pet a Python!  Our snake handlers ar here to talk about any questions or myths you've heard about snakes. Don't forget your camera! Our pythons are very photogenic and love to photos with you!