- Associated Press - Tuesday, November 3, 2015

SPEARFISH, S.D. (AP) - In a story Nov. 1 about efforts by Black Hills State University to increase the visibility of a letter “H” on the northern range of Lookout Mountain near Spearfish, The Associated Press reported erroneously that the letter was painted on the hillside. The letter is a large concrete structure. The story also erroneously reported that the school had sought for three years to remove foliage detracting from the letter’s visibility; the school has a goal to complete the work in three years. The story also erroneously reported that the letter had initially appeared in the middle of Lookout Mountain and was later moved; it was initially proposed for that location but never placed there.

A corrected version of the story is below:

BHSU to increase visibility of ‘H’ on Lookout Mountain

Spearfish officials OK BHSU’s request to increase visibility of ‘H’ on Lookout Mountain

SPEARFISH, S.D. (AP) - Black Hills State University has received permission from Spearfish officials to increase the visibility of a large concrete “H” on the northern range of Lookout Mountain.

The university hopes within the next three years to remove shrubbery, grasses and other foliage detracting from the letter’s visibility and reapply paint to keep the “H” looking bright. The letter stands for “Hills” and is meant to encourage school spirit, the Black Hills Pioneer (https://bit.ly/1WloGCB ) reported.

Students used to repaint the “H” before homecoming every year as part of an annual tradition dating back to the fall of 1955. The tradition, however, was discontinued in the late ‘70s after about 100 students were burned by the whitewash mixture, according to a history of the school written for its centennial in 1993.

“We’d like to bring back the tradition but in a safe non-hazardous way,” said Jane Klug, director of student services at Black Hills State University.

Students have hiked up to the “H” sporadically over the past few years to touch up the letter with white spray paint, but the school wants to re-establish the tradition as an organized annual effort, she said.

The Spearfish City Council approved the school’s request two weeks ago and will hash out specific details about the letter’s maintenance during future meetings.

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