News broke on Thursday night that will have hundreds of families throughout the Sioux Empire scrambling to find daycare services for their children in the coming weeks.

Dakota News Now is reporting that Apple Tree Children's Centers will be closing their doors in less than a month.

The popular children's center notified its customer base late Thursday, (December 14) via letters that went out to families with children attending the various daycare facilities throughout the Sioux Falls area.

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In the letter that went out to the families, Dakota News Now reports the daycare cited staff shortages, inflation impacts, and occupancy costs that have contributed to financial losses too large to sustain as the primary reasons for the closure.

Apple Tree's letter to the families also thanked its caregivers, managers, and support staff who have worked for them for over forty years. They also thanked all of the families who have entrusted their precious children to them for care.

According to Dakota News Now, Apple Tree Children's Centers have four different Sioux Falls locations that help to provide daycare services for thousands of children ranging in age from infant to the 5th grade.

The Apple Tree preschool and daycare operation first started providing services to residents of the Sioux Empire in 1981. They plan to suspend all operations by no later than (January 12), 2024.

The childcare industry in Sioux Falls and throughout South Dakota is already costly and strained, and Thursday's news will only help to further complicate matters.

Source: Dakota News Now

The 10 Largest Occupations in Sioux Falls

Where do people in Sioux Falls work? If this was fifty years ago the average Sioux Fallsian worked in some industrial, meat packing, or farm-related position. Sioux Falls has also been the major regional medical center for decades.

Customer service and other retail-related jobs have always been a part of the Sioux Empire's economy. But in recent years those industries have become major employers.

If you live in Sioux Falls, there's a pretty good chance you work one of these jobs. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, these are the top 10 largest occupations in Sioux Falls (as of 2022).

Gallery Credit: Ben Kuhns

A Survival Guide For Your First Winter in South Dakota

Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and the rest of the Sioux Empire (AKA southeastern South Dakota) are welcoming thousands of new residents every year.

Many of you new folks will be experiencing your first eastern South Dakota winter. While it doesn't usually get as bad as our Dakota friends up north, I speak from experience when I say it can get a little rough.

So, to help ease you into winter in Sioux Falls and South Dakota here are some winter survival tips:


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