Andes Central All School Reunion

This event is an opportunity for graduates of the Lake Andes/Andes Central Schools to gather, visit, and dance on a regular basis. The event takes place every five years, those that end in a zero or a five. This event has been a tradition since 1990 and has seen thousands of individuals meet up with their friends for years gone by. These individuals come together, whether they had attended for only a few years or had gone from Kindergarten to High School Senior, to laugh, reminisce, heal, or renew their friendships of old.

The event has always been held in July on the first weekend following Independence Day. It is planned and executed by the Reunion Committee with the help of many non-alumni individuals and civic groups. The local school board and administration, as well as the staff of Andes Central, have always welcomed the attendees of this gathering with open arms, and have aided in coordinating tours, finding classmates, facilitating the event, and just generally welcoming the general public to invade the school grounds.

The reunion takes place over several days with several events planned. These can be found on the Events Page here.

Reunion Committee

The Andes Central All School Reunion Committee is made up of a small number of dedicated local Alumni. These individuals run their tails off to gather information, book venues, find their classmates, coordinate local entities, package up invites and generally make the whole thing happen in a timely manner. They are a dedicated group that has been putting the quinquennial reunion together since 1990.

From the beginning, a select few have always stepped up to be the leaders that brought this event to Lake Andes. Alice (Sejnoha) Koupal (’64), Dave (’71) and Marcia (Hermanek) (’73) Honomichl, Janet (Dahlgren) Evans (’72), Sue (Patocka) Schultz (’75), have always been the go-to individuals that work tirelessly to make this happen. Please take time to thank the committee if you have a chance! of the School.

Lake Andes

Lake Andes is a city in, and the county seat of, Charles Mix County, South Dakota, United States. The population was 879 at the 2010 census.[6] 

The town took its name from Lake Andes which some say derives its name from a pioneer hunter named Handy, while others believe was named after Edward Andes, a fur company official.[7]

Lake Andes is located at 43°9′25″N 98°32′17″W (43.156825, -98.538053).[8]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 0.82 square miles (2.12 km2), of which 0.80 square miles (2.07 km2) is land and 0.02 square miles (0.05 km2) is water.[2]

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 879 people, 316 households, and 195 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,098.8 inhabitants per square mile (424.2/km2). There were 361 housing units at an average density of 451.3 per square mile (174.2/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 40.8% White, 0.1% African American, 52.7% Native American, 0.1% Asian, 0.1% from other races, and 6.1% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.8% of the population.

There were 316 households of which 40.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 28.2% were married couples living together, 26.6% had a female householder with no husband present, 7.0% had a male householder with no wife present, and 38.3% were non-families. 34.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 19.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.52 and the average family size was 3.24.

The median age in the city was 33.8 years. 32.1% of residents were under the age of 18; 7.7% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 21.6% were from 25 to 44; 19.9% were from 45 to 64; and 18.7% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 47.9% male and 52.1% female.

Andes Central School District

Andes Central School is located in Lake Andes. The town is located on the shores of Lake Andes, a natural glacier-made lake on the prairie of South Dakota. The school of Lake Andes was founded in 1928

The New Andes Central School –  The Daily Republic January 8th, 2019

Almost everything is new at the Andes Central school facility. And just as importantly, it’s all under one roof.
A $13 million addition of about 55,000 square feet was christened Monday with a ribbon-opening on the first day of school after the holiday break. Also held was an afternoon open house for community members to check out the new space.

The day capped more than a decade of planning and about 18 months of building the new facility, which is located in the eastern edge of the city, connected to the district’s elementary school. It brings about 350 students preschool through high school-age under one roof.

The construction project sends the right message about the school to the community, said Andes Central School Board President Debbie Houseman, who is in her 13th year on the board.

“Our kids, they deserve to have a school of this quality,” she said. “We’ve been working at this for a while, and we’ve finally reached that day where it’s a reality.”

Previously, the two schools were located about a half-mile apart in the city, while also cutting down on cross-town trips from one building to another for the district’s shared teachers, from departments such as art or music.

“Having the little kids see what it’s like in the high school and to have those role models in their school is a very good thing,” school board member Kristin Dvorak said.

Along with 24,000 square feet of remodeled space, nearly the entire school received some sort of upgrade. The school district saved about $6 million for the project, and will fund the rest through a U.S. Department of Agriculture low-interest loan.

“Schools are the heart of any community,” Andes Central Superintendent Debera Lucas said. “So for us to have a facility like this that we can share with our community really hedges our bet that this will help support any families that are thinking about moving to our area and will have facilities that will cover their child’s needs.”

The project was not without challenges. A wet summer in 2018 didn’t allow the building to open at the start of the school year, as initially was planned. When the January move-in date was organized, two snow storms in December made the move a tough challenge. But the district hired extra staff and dedicated teachers helped get everything into line over the holiday break.

“We had a couple blizzards that tried to stop us, but we weren’t going to let that happen,” Houseman said.

At the front of the school, a common, secured entrance for all students leads to two seperate wings for elementary and high school students. Much of the previously existing building has revamped characteristics. An old gym is now the building’s library, while the former library now has a common area and additional elementary staff offices.

The school’s art department calls a previous science room its home. In the high school wing, the two science teachers no longer have to share a lab space or jostle to get the lab room for their classes.

The construction resulted in a series of new classrooms, and large specific spaces for career and technical education and family and consumer sciences. In the latter, the classroom has built-in kitchen areas with an intent to be more career-oriented, pumping some life into a program that was dormant for five years in the last few years. The CTE area is large and meant to be flexible for welding or wiring training, but for starters, the district plans to add an agriculture curriculum to the space.

“I think it was important that we didn’t build it for 2019, we built it for 20 or 30 years from now,” Lucas said. “We’re a small district, so we’re not going to have two, or three, or four empty classrooms to juggle around. We thought about how can we design this in a way that we can build this and have it evolve into the future.”

In a few instances, there are specific breakout rooms for small groups to work that are connected to classrooms but are visible to the school’s hallway corridors. Many of the rooms’ desks are also geared toward working in groups, as only the classrooms for the youngest students have traditional desks.

Also in the new addition is two gymnasiums, including a smaller auxiliary gym with a stage on one sideline that can seat between 350 and 500 people depending on the configuration. A larger gym – that can seat more than 700 – is more focused on athletics, built to potentially postseason games with state-of-the-art scoreboards. A corridor between the two gyms provides space for concessions and four locker rooms, ending the days of opposing teams changing in classrooms prior to games. (The new gym will be host its inaugural games tonight with a basketball doubleheader with nearby rivals Tripp-Delmont/Armour.)

One of the issues with putting all of the district’s students under one roof was how to handle the cafeteria and lunch room. To connect the new school addition to the existing cafeteria and commons area, they built a long corridor between the two areas called The Link. In between the Link corridor and the existing elementary school is an outdoor area that will allow for outdoor classroom teaching. Accented with quarried rock and eventual tall native grasses, the outdoor space is meant to be a flexible space that can be used for teaching or potentially letting older students eat lunch or study outside.

The entire facility is tinged in earth tones mixed with yellow and black accents, emphasizing the school’s colors and Eagles mascot. There are also banners and signage to pay respect to the district’s Native American values. In the Link area, banners hang above the walkway that have qualities students should represent, such as “courage” and “dependable,” but in larger lettering is the Lakota translation: “woohitika” and “wowacinya,” respectively.

But the upgraded facility is also built for the modern realities of a small school in South Dakota: there’s one art room, one music room that covers band and chorus, and there’s one large library for all of the district’s students.

“It’s a better concentration of our resources,” Dvorak said. “We don’t need to go looking for any of our teachers when they’re trying to get across town. They’re all under one roof and in one place.”

Lake Andes Wildlife Refuge-