Imagine having access to visual arts, interactive science, educational opportunities, and performing arts under one roof? The Washington Pavilion makes experiencing all of these (and more!) possible at one of the most beautifully restored historic buildings in the downtown Sioux Falls area.
- 📰 Washington Pavilion History
- 🎭 Husby Performing Arts
- ☎ Contact RL Real Estate
- 🎬 Wells Fargo CineDome
- 🦖 Kirby Science Discovery Center
- 🎆 Sioux Falls Events
- 🖼 Visual Arts Center
- ⚱ Community Learning Center
- 🥗 Leonardo's Cafe
- 🗓 Free First Fridays
- 🎂 Washington Pavilion Celebrates 20 Years!
- 📱 Location & Contact Details
📰 Washington Pavilion History
The arts and science center now known as the Washington Pavilion was once known as Washington High School. With the transformation completed in 1999, the Washington Pavilion opened its doors to the public.
Current venues located within the Washington Pavilion include Husby Performing Arts Building, Wells Fargo CineDome, Kirby Science Discovery Center, The Visual Arts Center, Leonardo’s Cafe, and Community Learning Center.
🎭 Husby Performing Arts
Experience amazing Broadway performances at the Mary W. Sommervold Hall and the Belbas Theater. If you get a chance, don’t forget to check out the wall of graffiti located in the backstage area of the Mary W. Sommervold Hall where performers leave their signatures.
The Mary W. Sommervold Hall is a space of incredible beauty, but it didn’t become such a favored performance venue without a lot of work. Construction began with the removal of the insides of the school’s auditorium, and the roof was raised to make room for the balcony and ventilation that was needed. With dark plum accents, this majestic building is now six stories and spans the distance of 99 feet wide and 160 feet long.
Designers of the Mary W. Sommervold Hall captured the appeal of traditional theater elements and matched them with modern acoustical needs that included the addition of quartzite panels repurposed from a college in Springfield, South Dakota. The hall comfortably seats approximately 1,900 people.
The Belbas Theater is also part of the Husby Performing Arts Center and seats approximately 300 people. This smaller, intimate venue is perfect for recitals, lectures, and musical programs.
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🎬 Wells Fargo CineDome
With 164 seats situated on ten rising tiers, the Wells Fargo CineDome Theater is an impressive display of architecture and design. Fully immerse yourself in the movie experience with realistic images on the four-story domed screen and powerful sound from the 7,200 watts of power coming from the audio amplifiers.
Films you may find on the schedule include Amazon Adventure, Extreme Weather, Mysteries of China, Tiny Giants, and Journey to Space.
🦖 Kirby Science Discovery Center
On the southern side of the Washington Pavilion, you’ll find the Kirby Science Discovery Center. When it comes to exhibits, this center supplies plenty of excitement with everything from dinosaurs to aerodynamics.
There are three floors of exhibit areas and an outside location. A recent exhibition on the Spinosaurus gives visitors an up close and personal look at this sizeable carnivorous dinosaur that lived during the Cretaceous Period.
Don’t forget to stop by and say hello to the Tyrannosaurus Rex replica named Stan who would have roamed the earth about 65 million years ago.
🎆 Sioux Falls Events
🖼 Visual Arts Center
The Visual Arts Center was part of the Carnegie Library, but it became part of the Washinton Pavilion in 1999. You’ll find more than 1,600 featured art pieces in their collection, including over 300 works completed by South Dakota artists.
The Visual Arts Center has painting studios, clay studios, seven galleries, and a children’s studio. The Paladino Hohms Sculpture Garden and the Everist Gallery are also within the center.
The Everist Gallery was once the Washington High School’s library. During the redesign of the space, builders removed the study balcony, but they replicated the 1906 window design.
⚱ Community Learning Center
The mission of the Washington Pavilion is to provide opportunities within the community that educate, inspire, enrich, and entertain. They want people to experience and explore science and the arts. One way they accomplish this mission is with the educational programs offered through the Community Learning Center.
Whether you’re looking for a preschool class for a younger member of your household or a class for adults, there’s something for everyone at the Community Learning Center. Look here for the complete list!
The Graham Academy Preschool enrolls children 3 – 5 years of age. Programs for those 6 – 8 years of age include Creative Kids adventure and Jr. Astronaut Academy.
Opportunities for young adults include the Dakota Academy of Performing Arts, the Sanford Promise Program, and Open Clay Studio. The Dakota Academy of Performing Arts lets young adults explore their passion for theater, while the Sanford Promise Program gives students hands-on experience in a science laboratory.
What about adult activities? Wine on the Wheel gives you a chance to unwind and make something with their own hands in the clay workshop. The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute provides classes to those 50 years of age and older.
🥗 Leonardo’s Cafe
It’s easy to make a full day of fun experiences and adventures at the Washington Pavilion with tasty dishes you’ll find at Leonardo’s Cafe. These freshly cooked offerings are sure to please everyone in your household.
If you are a Washington Pavilion member, you’ll receive 10 percent off your entire meal! There are weekly lunch specials, before-show buffets, and catering options available. Specials we’ve spotted include Chicken Carbonara over Fettuccini, Meatballs Stroganoff, and Shepherd’s Pie.
🗓 Free First Fridays
The Washington Pavilion happily gives back to the community through the monthly Free First Friday event. Visitors receive free admission to the Kirby Science Discovery Center and Visual Arts Center.
Children 12 years of age and under must be with an adult. Activities include scavenger hunts, hands-on projects, and guided tours.
🎂 Washington Pavilion Celebrates 20 Years!
The month of June is a special one for the Washington Pavilion and marks the beginning of their history in Sioux Falls. June of 2019, the Washington Pavilion celebrates its 20-year milestone. They packed June full of celebratory events and special appearances to mark this incredible occasion with a day-long festival scheduled on June 1, 2019.