Art museums are supposed to be ‘Art’ friendly NOT ‘Kid’ friendly

Should have seen this coming a mile away when you put a youth pastor cartoonist in charge of a fine arts center. To that in a moment.

Last night at the council meeting they only had three resolutions on the agenda. It was 5 year contract renewals for SMG, Ovations & the Washington Pavilion.

I suggested that SMG promote more of their own shows to make the city coffers a little money. After the meeting, Argus Leader reporter Joe Sneve told me it may be difficult for the Denty to promote their own shows because they signed a contract with Live Nation. I said, “Well that was stupid.” Joe then asked Turbak who was standing there if that was true and like the grump toad mayor he just stood there and glared at me. Joe said to me, “You just aren’t happy about anything Scott” and chuckled. I responded, “We are running a concert hall not a church hall.”

When the resolution for the Pavilion came up, I suggested to the council that they look at audits and financials more thoroughly before okaying these contracts. I also suggested they amend the contract so that the visual arts center is free to all for local and regional exhibits. Councilor Starr called up Darrin Smith and asked him about the VAC. Smith said they are going to be making ‘great changes’ over the next couple of years in the VAC to make it better, including making the arts center more ‘kid’ friendly.


Arts centers should concentrate on ART. Visual art no matter the style has a wide appeal to all ages, that’s what makes it great. If there is a challenging exhibit to younger tikes – this is a great opportunity for parents to talk to their young ins about the topic and start a conversation. Art museums are not playlands, they are there to inspire emotion, influence creativity and are supposed to make you think. If kids want to play, they can play in the Science Center.

As for the VAC being FREE, there are two reasons why it is important. First off, it brings people into the Pavilion that normally wouldn’t visit an arts center, but more importantly it is a nice service to the public who help fund the facility. The city subsidizes the Pavilion for over a million a year. Besides FREE Tuesdays and First Fridays, the only other thing in the entire building that is FREE is the Sioux Falls black history cases (that few people know about because it is buried on a back hallway.)

Just another facility the taxpayers subsidize and still have to pay to walk through it’s doors. The Pavilion for years has tried to shake off the stigma they are only for the elite in Sioux Falls, I guess they have just given up that fight and accepted it. Sad.

1 comment so far ↓

#1 The D@ily Spin on 11.16.17 at 10:44 am

It occurred to me the Washington Pavilion could become a Scientology property. Moving it from taxpayer supported to tax exempt may be the only way to maintain it. There doesn’t seem to be a way to make it profitable.

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