The Butterfly House & Aquarium is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. We are the only public saltwater aquarium in the Dakotas and one of only a few butterfly houses nationwide that are open year-round.
Spreading Our Wings
Starting as a butterfly conservatory in 2002, the Butterfly House & Aquarium has transformed into a must-see Sioux Falls attraction over the last couple of decades. In 2010, a group of aquarium hobbyists brought forward an idea that would change the Sertoma Butterfly House forever: add aquariums. After the last ten years of displaying tropical butterflies, we struggled to bring in visitors and meet operating budgets. It was a monumental turning point—a time to change, take risks, and rise to the challenge.
Within a year of opening, the Aquarium had families and classes pouring in to experience a piece of the ocean—right here in South Dakota. Over time, the starter aquariums were gradually replaced by exhibits with interactive elements and a more diverse collection of marine animals.
Looking to the Future
With support from community members like you, the Dakota Aquarium Capital Campaign will nearly triple the size of the Butterfly House & Aquarium. The expansion will focus on new educational experiences with aquarium exhibits and interactive classrooms, alongside the beloved butterfly conservatory.