Watertown is a city in and the county seat of Codington County, South Dakota, United States. The population was 21,482 at the 2010 census. It is the fifth largest city in South Dakota. It is also the principal city of the Watertown Micropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Codington and Hamlin counties. Paul S. Fox is the current Mayor. Watertown has one public high school, Watertown High School, and one private boarding school, Great Plains Lutheran High School.
Watertown was founded in 1879 as a rail terminus when the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad reactivated part of a line it had constructed to Lake Kampeska. Despite the prominence of rivers and lakes in the area, the city was named after Watertown, New York, the hometown of brothers John E. Kemp and Oscar P. Kemp, two of the city's founders. The town's name was originally planned to be named Kampeska.
Redlin Art Center, Bramble Park Zoo and Codington County Heritage Museum are amongst the 3 most popular attractions in Watertown, South Dakota. Other popular attractions includes the Mellette House, Watertown Family Aquatic Center, Watertown Stadium, Lake Kampeska, Lake Pelican, and the Watertown Regional Library.
The most-visited of all of the Watertown attractions, the Redlin Art Center, celebrates the work and inspiration of landscape artist Terry Redlin. Over the past 25 years, Watertown's favorite son has become one of the most-collected artists of Americana and wildlife.
The Bramble Park Zoo is home to animals from around the globe as well as some species native to South Dakota. Visitors can take a ride on the ride on the Plains Commerce Railroad, listen to zookeeper talks, and explore the children's play area at this welcoming zoo in Watertown South Dakota.
The Codington County Heritage Museum is one of the Watertown attractions devoted to regional history, the historic museum is located in the former Carnegie library. The stately building is filled with interesting exhibits and sets the stage for guided tours, educational events, and workshops.
Arts and Culture in the City of Watertown South Dakota always has something new to offer, from museums, plays, Theater, galleries to music and concerts. Amongst these are the Redlin Art Center, Watertown Artwalk, Century Gallery Sandy Ellyson Art Studio, Dustin Sinner Fine Art Studio, Joy Ranch, Studio 66 Custom Design Stained Glass, and Townplayers Theater. To learn more about the arts and culture opportunities in Watertown, SD, we recommend you to go to the website visitwatertownsd.com.
Historic Uptown offers an array of things to do in Watertown. This hip historic district features specialty shops and distinctive restaurants. Special events are staged through the year, including an arts walk, block parties, and a Fourth of July parade.
As with other cities in this scenic state, many Watertown attractions are found outdoors. Two major lakes just outside the city are favorites for fishing, hunting, and boating. Both Lake Kampeska and Lake Pelican are known for their abundant walleye, perch, large-mouth bass, and pan fish. Several parks offer hiking and biking trails, among other places to enjoy the scenery. In October, pheasant hunting is one of the most popular things to do in Watertown.
Terry Redlin, Stephen Foster Briggs and Lee Raymond are 3 notable people from Watertown, South Dakota. Terry Redlin (1937-2016) was an American artist popular for painting outdoor themes and wildlife, often pictured in twilight, as widely collected as prints. Stephen Foster Briggs (1885-1976) was the founder Briggs & Stratton manufacturing company, and founder of Outboard Marine Corporation. Born in Watertown, South Dakota, he graduated from South Dakota State College. Lee Raymond, (born 1938) is an American businessman, and the chief executive officer (CEO) and chairman of ExxonMobil from 1999 to 2005. He was born and attended primary and secondary school in Watertown.