Coronation of the Dakota Days King and Queen kicks off the week’s events at 7 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 6 in the DakotaDome. Queen candidates are: Mandy Ellefson of Garretson, S.D. Ellefson, a communication studies major, is active in Panhellenic Council, Omicron Delta Kappa and the Political Science League at USD; Mary Fitzgibbons of Sioux Falls, S.D. Fitzgibbons, a communication disorders major, is active in Students Theatre Cooperation, Dance Marathon and University Theatre at USD; Brooke Riedeman of Sutherland, Iowa. An alcohol and drug studies major, Riedeman is active in Pi Beta Phi, Dakotans and the Vermillion/USD Boxing Team; Michelle Rydell of Vermillion. Rydell, a journalism and English major, is editor of The Volante, a member of Kappa Alpha Theta and is active in Student Ambassadors at USD; Dawn Seefeldt of Sioux City, Iowa. A double major in criminal justice and psychology, Seefeldt is a member of Pi Beta Phi, Strollers and the Criminal Justice Club; Carrie Srstka of Sioux Falls, S.D. Srstka is a health services administration major and her campus activities include Kappa Alpha Theta, Mortar Board Honor Society and Omicron Delta Kappa; and Amber Stern of Freeman, S.D. Stern, a political science major, is active in Alpha Phi and Mortar Board Honor Society at USD.

Dakota Days King candidates are: Joe Cooch of Spearfish, S.D. Majoring in political science, Cooch is a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon, Omicron Delta Kappa and Dance Marathon at The U; Dan Cwach from Yankton, S.D. A chemistry major, Cwach’s activities at USD include Student Ambassadors, Sigma Alpha Epsilon and Dakotans; Jeff Dice of Mitchell, S.D. Dice, a psychology major, is active in Dance Marathon, Sigma Alpha Epsilon and Tech Fellow; Chris Healy of Yankton, S.D. Majoring in political science, Healy is active in both Strollers and Lambda Chi at USD; Bryce Johnston from Sioux City, Iowa. Johnson, an accounting major, participates in Dakotans, Delta Sigma Pi and Student Ambassadors; Justin Rollins of Black Hawk, S.D. Rollins, a psychology major, is a member of Strollers and Tau Kappa Epsilon, and he plays rugby at The U; and Alex Smith of Gettysburg, S.D. A business management major, Smith is active in Students in Free Enterprise, Strollers and Tau Kappa Epsilon.

Additional activities scheduled for the week include USD women’s volleyball vs. the University of Sioux Falls, 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 7, DakotaDome; "Coyote Idol" at 8 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 8, Commons Dining Hall; presentation of the 26th annual Al Neuharth Award for Excellence in Media to Charles Overby, CEO of the Newseum, on Thursday, Oct. 9 at 7 p.m. in Slagle Auditorium; and the All-Alumni Reunion Dinner and Awards at 6 p.m., Masaba Mining Equipment Co., Vermillion.

Events on Saturday, Oct. 11 begin at 10 a.m. with the 94th annual Dakota Days Parade on Main Street in Vermillion and continue with the Coyote Tailgate Nation at the east end of the DakotaDome at noon. USD’s football game vs. Missouri S&T follows at 2 p.m. in the DakotaDome.

For more information and a complete list of events, please visit the 2008 Dakota Days Web site at

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