Check out These Family-Friendly Events at the Washington Pavilion Over Christmas Break

December 18, 2023

Sioux Falls, SD — Christmas break is a great occasion for family time, and the Washington Pavilion provides fun opportunities for families to make memories together. Upcoming events include watching a classic holiday film, exploring the museums, celebrating Noon Year’s Eve, discovering Tidings and Tinsel and marveling at our outdoor Christmas tree. 

Catch a Classic Holiday Film
The Wells Fargo CineDome & Sweetman Planetarium will show your favorite classic holiday films including “Elf,” “The Grinch” and “Back to the Future” from Dec. 22–31. Add a film to your museums admission for just $4 for members and $5 for the public. Don’t forget to purchase your gourmet ice cream at Parlour House, soon to open on the second floor of the Kirby Science Discovery Center.

Noon Year’s Eve
Staying up until midnight can make for a late night for kids and even some parents. The Washington Pavilion offers a fun alternative, Noon Year’s Eve! Come hang out with Radley Rex and watch the balloons drop at 12:30 p.m. on Dec. 31 at the Kirby Science Discovery Center.

Kirby Science Discovery Center
The Kirby Science Discovery Center will be open over Christmas break, and it’s a great opportunity to show kids that learning can happen outside of school as well. Admission into the museum unlocks a world of space exploration, agricultural science, dinosaurs, water science and more!

Visual Arts Center
For kids who are interested in art, the “Astrographica: Preparations for Space Exploration” exhibit is a terrific way to introduce them to beautiful artwork that correlates with the Wells Fargo CineDome & Sweetman Planetarium. This collection features photography of the cosmos and NASA space launches by artist Wes Eisenhauer and will be on display only until March 31. Seven other art exhibits bring new life to landscapes, demonstrate printmaking techniques and more!

Fun Daily Programming
Our December daily programming theme is Celebrations of Light Around the World! Your kiddos can travel the world celebrating international holidays with fun crafts in Jack’s Imagination Lab and Raven Children’s Studio. There is something new every day when you visit our museums!

Lunch at The WP
Learning and playing all day can work up quite the appetite, and the perfect place to find a bite to eat is at The WP. With our selection of daily rotating hot entrées, market-fresh sandwiches, scoop-n-serve salads, delicious soups and fun kids’ meals, everyone is sure to find something to enjoy! The WP is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Tidings and Tinsel
Decorating Christmas trees is one of the most beloved traditions this time of year, and so many beautiful trees can be found in the second-floor lobby of the Washington Pavilion. Stroll through to check out the multitude of twinkling trees now through the end of December.

Outdoor Christmas Tree
Every day from dusk till dawn you can gaze at our massive 45-foot-tall outdoor Christmas tree. Take a family picture to show just how big it is now through the end of December.

The Washington Pavilion will be closed Christmas Eve Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day but open Dec. 26–31 and Jan. 2. For more information on holiday programs and activities, please visit

About Washington Pavilion Management, Inc. (WPMI)
Washington Pavilion Management, Inc. is a private 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and the largest arts organization in the state. The management company oversees and programs two historic City of Sioux Falls facilities: the Washington Pavilion of Arts and Science and the Orpheum Theater Center. The company also provides professional management services, including administration; arts, science and educational programming; ticketing; event management; marketing; and more to other arts and nonprofit organizations. For information, please visit

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