Menu

Scales and Tales

Summer season begins at Reptile Gardens

Reptile Gardens is ready for a busy summer!


Rapid City, S.D. — Spring is almost over and with the start of summer comes new hours and plenty of new things to look at.

The summer season brings the start of new hours for Reptile Gardens. Beginning on May 25, the park will be open full hours of 8 a.m. — 6 p.m. During this time all three shows will be running, giving visitors the chance to observe alligators and crocodiles, a snake demonstration, and birds from around the world.

Home to the world's largest collection of retiles, this year Reptile Gardens is celebrating its 75th year as one of the Black Hills most popular attractions. The park not only features rare and exotic reptiles, but also showcases a variety of flowers and flowerbeds including orchids and bromeliads.

Reptile Garden's CEO, Joe Maierhauser, explains how they are getting Reptile Gardens ready for the summer season.

"We will be putting tens of thousands of flowering plants in the ground in the next few weeks," Maierhauser said. "The garden crew is going to be very busy putting each plant in one at a time while still keeping the lawns mowed and planting lots of new trees and bushes."

Another new accessory to the park, the Methuselah's Memorial Playground, has already seen success with children visiting. "The kids are really enjoying it and there are a few more finishing touches to complete over the next couple of weeks," Maierhauser said. A life-sized bronze statue of Methuselah, the giant tortoise, will complete the area. The bronze statue is set to be unveiled on the anniversary of Methuselah's death, July 10.

Whether you're an out of town visitor or a Rapid City resident, Reptile Gardens has something for you to explore and enjoy. Visit our website at /visit/ to see our summer season rates.

-30-


About Reptile Gardens

Reptile Gardens maintains one of the world's finest collections of reptiles. To learn more about Reptile Gardens' employment opportunities, hours, admission costs and season pass specials, call (605) 342-5873 or visit their website: http://reptilegardens.com.

Back

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 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!