Museum Programs


Visit Us for These Fun Activities!

Join us for fun programs that help students experience history. We are continually adding new programs. You can receive updated program dates and topics by calling (605) 978-7015 and asking to be on our teacher mailing list and/or email list. Availability is subject to change due to COVID-19. Some programs may be done virtually.


Gaze into the night sky in our portable planetarium and discover the secrets of the seasonal constellations. Starlab gives students the tools to begin their own sky exploration. Starlab encompasses astronomy and mythology and is applicable to science and history standards.

Programs are offered to the public for $2 per person but are FREE to scheduled school groups.

  • Each Starlab presentation lasts approximately 30 to 40 minutes.
  • We can accommodate up to 25 people per program.
  • Starlab is for ages five and older only.
  • Call (605) 978-7015 to schedule a program. We recommend calling three weeks in advance for best times.

If you live outside of Sioux Falls and can’t come to Starlab, Starlab could come to you! Fees may apply outside Minnehaha County. Please call for space and setup requirements.

Starlab is temporarily unavailable

Kids Activity Day
Join us for some crafty fun! This hands-on program explores a different theme each month. Kids enjoy a short educational program and making their own craft to take home. Kids Activity Day is offered on the third Thursday of each month and is appropriate for preschool and early elementary children. Please call (605) 367-4210 to reserve a time for your children.

Calendar of Events


Lakota Tipi
30 – 45 minutes

Students learn how buffalo hides and lodge pole pine trees were used to construct an efficient, portable home and will help erect a three-foot tipi with a tanned hide cover. This is an excellent exercise in teamwork, history, and cultural awareness.

Our popular Tipi program can be done at the museum, or it can come to you! Bring this fun, hands-on program to your class.

Lakota TipiLakota Tipi


Focus on History
Are you looking for an extra credit project for middle or high school students? Watch for Focus on History speakers throughout the school year. Experts on various history related topics come to the museum for presentations and book readings, providing a great opportunity for students to explore history outside the classroom.

Calendar of Events


Historic Walks
Enjoy beautiful summer weather while learning about Sioux Falls history! Historic Walking Tours take you on a trip through the past as you visit historic residential areas, local cemeteries and downtown Sioux Falls.

Tours take place during the summer months on Thursday evenings. They are also available to scheduled groups at any time. Please call (605) 978-7015 to schedule a special tour for your group.
Walks include:

  • Woodlawn Cemetery
  •  Mt. Pleasant Cemetery
  •  Phillips Avenue
  •  Warehouse District
  •  Fort Dakota
  •  North McKennan Park
  •  South McKennan Park
  •  Duluth Avenue
  •  Summit and Prairie Avenues
  •  South End Cathedral District
  •  Woodlawn II
  • Railroad Depots


Guided Tours of the Old Courthouse Museum
Be our guest on a guided tour of the Old Courthouse Museum and its exhibits. Guided tours generally last 30-45 minutes and include building history, hallway murals, permanent exhibitions, and a guided look through our larger exhibit galleries. We encourage groups to plan additional time for browsing through remaining galleries or to revisit hands-on components in the larger galleries. For a fun addition to your visit, your group can add a scavenger hunt or a self-guided tour around the exterior of the building. We can customize your tour; let us know what you would like to see!


Guided Tours of the Pettigrew Home and Museum
Discover the Sioux Falls of yesterday with a guided tour of the 1889 Queen Anne-style home of South Dakota’s first senator, R.F. Pettigrew. Tours of the home include information about the home itself, the people who lived here, and what life was like around the turn of the last century; they last about 30 minutes each. We can accommodate approximately 10 visitors per tour; larger groups will be divided into multiple tour groups and will rotate between the exhibit galleries and the restored home.


Power Point Presentations
Our PowerPoint presentations use historic photos and images to illustrate local history topics. These presentations can be done at the museum or they can come to you!


Then and Now Sioux Falls
Exposed: Behind the Lens of L. T. Butterfield
East Side Story: The Legend of a Quarry Town
Sioux Falls Architects
The Story of Minnehaha County
Beer:  Brewed, Bottled, and Banned
Sioux Falls First Museum
Cruisin’ Cuisine:  Drive Ins of Sioux Falls