Fan Favorite ‘Stairway of Sound’ Enhanced and Upgraded at the Kirby Science Discovery Center

February 16, 2022

Sioux Falls, SD  — The Stairway of Sound, a fan favorite at the Kirby Science Discovery Center, is enhanced and upgraded just in time for a long holiday weekend! Come check it out! Our museums are open on Monday, Feb. 21, 2022, when schools are closed for Presidents’ Day.

The Stairway of Sound connects the third and fourth floors of the Kirby Science Discovery Center and is the main internal staircase that kids love to run up and down. Why? Because each stair creates a different sound when stepped on.

Local company Hartman Technology recently updated the equipment and software that operates the sound technology in the staircase. The new software offers the opportunity to customize the sounds, so Kirby Science Discovery Center staff members are excited to create new sounds based on themes for events and holidays and may even incorporate songs.

“We replaced 80 lbs. of outdated technology that filled an entire closet with equipment that fits into a 9x13 cake pan while increasing functionality and improving the sound quality,” says Troy Hartman, President and Owner of Hartman Technology. “But more than that, we know this work really makes an impact on the children who visit the Washington Pavilion.”

The staircase also features a beautiful new mural painted by local artist Chuck Bennis. The mural includes both science-based facts as well as depictions of South Dakota landmarks.

“The Stairway of Sound was already a huge draw for our young guests because the stairs are fun, physical and enhance learning, but this modern technology will improve their experience and ensure this feature will last for years to come,” says Brandon Hanson, Director of Museums for Washington Pavilion Management, Inc.

The Kirby Science Discovery Center and Visual Arts Center will be open 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 21. Reserve your museum admission online for $1 off. Just go to

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 call 605-367-6000 or visit