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Mayor Schaunaman Stamps Personal Brand on Former Community Event

Mayor Travis Schaunaman is using his elected title and public office to promote another exclusive religious event.

Good Christian Travis is inviting his fellow Christians to come listen to Governor Kristi Noem’s Christian testimony at the “2021 Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast” on Tuesday, April 20, 6:30 a.m., at the Dakota Entertainment Center. On his “Aberdeen Mayor” Facebook page, Schaunaman directs eager Fundagelipublicans to click to pay their $18 for greasy Mavericks breakfast and greasier Christian posturing.

"Aberdeen Mayor Travis Schaunaman," FB post, 2021.04.14.
“Aberdeen Mayor Travis Schaunaman,” FB post, 2021.04.14.

Schaunaman at least recognizes he can’t use his actual government website to sell tickets to a religious event, but he dresses up his bare payment website with his official title. And Schaunaman has ditched the previous name of the event, the Aberdeen Community Prayer Breakfast, and rebranded it with his official title.

This exclusive rebranding from community to an individual politician reflects the fact that this event is just for certain people. Working parents scrambling to get kids to school (in a city whose public K-12 district doesn’t offer school bus service) probably don’t have an hour or more to sit listening to Jesus-was-a-Republican backpatting, not to mention $18 for breakfast. Aberdeen’s Muslim residents can’t comfortably participate, since the program starts at dawn, when our Muslim friends will be starting their daily Ramadan fast. Anyone outside the Christian faith will be made to feel like an outsider by a Governor whose testimony will surely extol the virtues not simply of the thoughtful, ethical living in which we can all find common ground but of fervent and showy prayer to the personal Jesus who affirms her divine right to rule.

And those of us who appreciate both a hearty breakfast and honest professions of faith will be denied both by the nauseating sound of professing “Christians” smugly applauding a politician whose public statements contradict the teachings of that somewhat reasonable Nazarene carpenter.

So for those of you who can’t make the Travis and Kristi Show, don’t feel too badly. They aren’t serving anything you can’t get with less cost to your pocketbook and your conscience on your own. Get up at the usual hour, go about your usual routine, and as you herd the kids out the door, make your own small promise to yourself and your community:

Do justice, love mercy, walk humbly with the gods you choose, and let’s go to work.


  1. jerry 2021-04-15 19:58

    Should have a counter event called “Atheists Good Time Hour”. $17 bucks for all the pizza you can eat plus soft drinks/adult beverages and music.

  2. Chad 2021-04-15 20:15


    I like Jerry’s idea much better!

  3. DaveFN 2021-04-15 20:53

    At the Dakota Entertainment Center, no less.

  4. Wade Brandis 2021-04-15 22:09

    Cory, I take it you’re not a fan of Mavericks? I found Mavericks website, and they don’t even list breakfast on their menu. It looks like your fairly standard Midwestern steakhouse and pub, with an event center attached to it, which just so happens to be the event center in question.

  5. Bill 2021-04-16 08:07

    Another potential problem is that this may be just the first of many elected officials hosting a similar event with Noem speaking. All at taxpayer’s expense.

  6. Nix 2021-04-16 08:37


    Oh, That’s rich.

  7. Willy 2021-04-16 09:06

    I’m with Jerry, too.

  8. Buckobear 2021-04-16 09:39

    Golly, they forgot to mention “Hopes.”

  9. mike from iowa 2021-04-16 09:59

    Jesus to Prayer Breakfasters, “You’ll eat those words, beeches.” Love to see how Monty Python, in their prime, would have handled this as a comedy skit. To the good old days when Python ruled the airwaves and religion kept more to its closet where it belongs/ed.

  10. jake 2021-04-16 09:59

    All you Noem lovers; break out your plastic-she’s just like Trump, asking for money directed to her ownself future.

  11. bearcreekbat 2021-04-16 11:33

    mfi, in the old days my two favorite programs that demonstated the absurdity and hypocrisy of religion were Monty Python’s Flying Circus and the PTL Club with Jim and Tammy Bakker. I loved all the skits on Monty Python and later the same evening used to enjoy watching Jim Bakker try to convince people to send him money, and demand a shocked and exhausted Tammy Faye do encores of her songs despite her obvious collapse in a religious fervor after she just finished a song.

    Musically, my favorite is still Fish Karma with such great but little known tunes (available on youtube) as “Fifty Caliber Christ,” “Rockin and Rollin’ with Little Baby Jesus,” “Baby, Let’s Be Methodists Tonight,” and several others. My introduction to his particular brand of religious tunes was on the old alternative radio station from the SD School of Mines, KTEQ, with Fish Karma’s classic, “God is a Groovy Guy:”


  12. Mark Anderson 2021-04-16 14:10

    You know those Republicans still think they can pass through the eye of a needle. A light breakfast helps.

  13. Joe 2021-04-16 14:55

    KTEQ, thank goodness is still around – on the air and streaming.

  14. Dan Goodwin 2021-04-16 15:05

    Dooby Bros….Jesus is just alright with me!

  15. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2021-04-16 15:20

    Wade, I don’t eat breakfast out much, because frankly, I can’t wait! Morning is productivity time for me.

    As for Maverick’s, yeah, pretty standard is about all one can say. I’ve eaten there and filled my tummy, but I don’t think I’ve ever had something there that makes me say to visitors, “Oh, man! You’ve got to try this!”

    I’m also of the impression that Mavericks didn’t do much to promote mask use… and I’m not seeing any mention of masks or social distancing or other pandemic precautions at this event for Kristi.

  16. mike from iowa 2021-04-16 15:50

    Bakker’s Pass The Loot club was the living end of televangelism as fraud, bcb. Thanks for Fish karma. Not sure which was funnier, but, Fish Karma is likelier closer to the truth about religion.

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