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  1. While most South Dakotans will dine on mass-produced, big-breasted white turkeys this Thanksgiving, some families will take advantage of the efforts of a handful of niche farmers in the state who are breeding, raising and selling "heritage turkeys" that were on the verge of extinction but are being revived as part of a growing farm-to-table consumer market.
  2. Opposition to legalization of medical and recreational marijuana in South Dakota centered in part on concerns that youth use of the drug would increase after legalization, and prevention advocates and law enforcement officials remain worried now that voters approved both forms of legal pot on Nov. 3. But a review of research studies and data from states where it is already legal provides mixed results and few firm conclusions about legalization's effects on youth.
  3. A recent poll of South Dakota residents found that support is far lower among women compared to men for Gov. Kristi Noem, her policies and the state's response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Experts say there are several reasons that South Dakota women, who often are primary caretakers of children and the elderly, and who have suffered greater economic and emotional burdens due to the coronavirus, are less approving of Noem's performance.
  4. A recent poll sponsored by South Dakota News Watch and the Chiesman Center for Democracy revealed that women are less supportive than men of Gov. Kristi Noem and the state's response to the COVID-19 pandemic. News Watch contacted a handful of South Dakota women to get their views on the governor and the ongoing pandemic.
  5. Two veterans of national political journalism told a South Dakota audience that they should expect ongoing turmoil in the coming months as President Donald Trump fights to retain his post and President-elect Joe Biden attempts to prepare to transition into the presidency. The pair -- USA Today Washington Bureau Chief Susan Page and Axios co-founder Jim VandeHei -- spoke during a virtual town hall sponsored by South Dakota News Watch on Nov. 9.
  6. Restrictions on movement and commerce intended to protect tribal populations from COVID-19 have hurt small businesses on Indian reservations in South Dakota. Reservation-based businesses have also struggled to take advantage of federal pandemic aid programs, leaving many owners and operators wondering if their businesses will survive.
  7. South Dakota state and county election officials have spent months preparing to host a fair, accurate and safe election amid an ongoing deadly pandemic that has led to record numbers of early and absentee votes. Some auditors have employed ingenious methods to overcome challenges and provide an orderly electoral process that will culminate on Election Day on Nov. 3.
  8. Residents of long-term care facilities in South Dakota are suffering mental and physical declines due to isolation and sensory deprivation caused by visitation and mobility restrictions put in place to protect them from infection by the deadly coronavirus. The preventative measures have caused anguish for residents and their loved ones, and a recent effort to use federal aid money to implement testing or other measures to mitigate isolation has failed.
  9. Home sales and prices are up in Sioux Falls, Rapid City and elsewhere in South Dakota, driven by what realtors say is a rise in relocations to the state by out-of-state residents seeking lower taxes, more home for their money, wide-open spaces and freedom from restrictions related to COVID-19 imposed by other states.
  10. Facing the challenge of remote learning on an isolated reservation with limited access to computers and wireless service, leaders of the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe in central South Dakota used federal funding, help from a non-profit tech firm and a dose of ingenuity to create their own local network to help children learn amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
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