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.

πŸ“° 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.

Washington Pavilion

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.

Washington Pavilion Theater Rodgers and Hammersteins Cinderella

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.

The film schedule changes every couple of months and showtimes vary. It’s a good idea to check the online calendar or call ahead (605-367-6000) before making plans to attend a film.

Films you may find on the schedule include Amazon Adventure, Extreme Weather, Mysteries of China, Tiny Giants, and Journey to Space.

πŸ¦– 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.

Washington Pavilion Spinosaurus

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.

New indoor exhibits this year include Space: An Out-of-this-World Experience, Jack’s Imagination Lab, Room to Grow, Nature Works, and Avera Stage Science. Are you looking for something unusual? Check out the Grossology: The (Impolite) Science of the Human Body exhibit.

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.

Washington Pavilion Trex

πŸŽ† Sioux Falls Events

πŸ–Ό 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.

Pottery at sidewalk arts Washington Pavilion

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 center’s collection includes 123 works on paper by Adolf Dehn, pottery by Maria Martinez and Betty Woodman, and a steel sculpture by Richard Hunt. Other artists represented in their collection pieces include Oscar Howe, Charles Greener, and Lova Jones.

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.

Community Center at Washington Pavilion

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.

Classes for those 8 – 10 years of age include Artist Adventure and Make Your Mark – Printmaking. For those 11 – 14 years of age, there are classes like Comics and Cartooning, DAPA Shakespeare Camp, and KSFY Media Camp.

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.

Washington Pavilion Community Learning Center 1

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.

Apart from the regularly scheduled classes and programs, you’ll find special events throughout the year at the Community Learning Center. Events include Ag Day, Arts Night Experience, Sidewalk Arts Festival, Design Challenge, Science Fair Showcase, and Spooky Science.

πŸ₯— 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.

Leonardos Cafe Dining Washington Pavilion

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.

πŸ—“ 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.

πŸŽ‚ 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.

Fill out this simple form to get your FREE printable schedule of the day’s events.

πŸ“± Location & Contact Details

Washington Pavilion

301 S. Main Avenue
Sioux Falls, SD 57104

Website |

Phone | 605-367-6000

Contact |

Social Media |Β Facebook

Discover the Washington Pavilion in Sioux Falls
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Discover the Washington Pavilion in Sioux Falls
Discover the Washington Pavilion in Sioux Falls, the area's top destination for the arts and science. Get inspired, educated, and entertained!
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RL Real Estate
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