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The 25 Best American Children’s Museums

Museums

Children’s museums are excellent institutions to combine family activity, education, recreation and interactive experiences to challenge developing minds. There are many museums throughout the US that are worth visiting, including children’s museums that are specifically designed for certain age groups. Many museums are family-friendly, so the sites typically have parking and restaurants or cafes. Others even have lockers for bags and strollers.

Methodology:

In order to generate this ranking, our team evaluated many facilities from around the country. Points were given to the museums based on the following criteria:

* Hands-On Activities
* Food: Are parents able to bring in food? Does the museum have a cafeteria?
* Cost and Parking: Can a family of 4 enter for under $50 (including parking)
* Memberships: Cost, benefits, privileged events
* Restricted areas for toddlers/preschoolers
* Educational options IE camps, day classes, family nights
* Traveling exhibits: Access, Costs (Additional or included with ticket or membership)

Please check out our ranking our selection for The Top 25 Children’s Museums.

25. Garden State Discovery Museum – Cherry Hill, New Jersey

Garden State Discovery Museum - Cherry Hill NJ

The Garden State Discovery Museum is the perfect place to bring children between ages 1 and 10. It is full of exhibits that are interactive which involve science and nature. The Garden State Discovery Museum encourages childhood discovery, curiosity, imagination and learning through play.

Admission for all visitors is $12.95 per person. The museum offers free parking, changing areas, free parking, private and party rooms for families to throw a birthday party, as well as workshops and performances and shows. The Garden State Discovery Museum emphasizes cleanliness at this museum. All museum exhibits that are touched by human hands get disinfected daily. There is also a no-sick-child policy which means that children who have contagious illnesses such as pink eye, lice, strep throat, a cold virus, diarrhea or vomiting may be prohibited from entry. This is for the safety of all families and children, so visitors are encouraged to visit the website to see these symptoms prior to making plans to visit if their child is sick.

24. Please Touch Museum – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Please Touch Museum-Philadelphia PA

The Please Touch Museum of Philadelphia was founded in 1976, and it is the first museum in the nation that was designed for children below seven years of age in mind. Children come to the Please Touch Museum to experience hands-on activities related to science and nature. General admission for any children under the age of 1 is free. Admission for children and adults costs $17 per person. The carousel ride costs an additional $3.00 per head and is not included as part of the admission price. Parking costs $8.00 per vehicle but is free for museum members. In order to get a museum membership, visit their website at the rate of each membership and its type. The most affordable membership is a $150 basic membership pass that lasts one year and can admit up to 4 visitors at a time. The membership also offers 15% discounts for birthday parties, souvenir store, café, and a discount for carousel rides. There are a number of exhibits at the Please Touch Museum such as City Capers, Flight Fantasy, Roadside Attractions, River Adventures, Wonderland, Centennial Exploration, Liberty Arm and Torch, Imagination Playground and the Please Touch Garden. The Please Touch Garden lets children and families try on costumes, make balls from seeds to plant, explore the earth for bugs, learn about gardening, the importance of recycling and composting. On site is also the café where produce raised from the garden gets incorporated into the café menu items. This outdoor garden is open in the spring and summer. The Please Touch Museum also has a Playhouse Theater. Shows at this venue typically run around 25 minutes each. Cost of show are part of the admission fee.

23. Portland Children’s Museum – Portland, Oregon

Portland Childrens Museum-Portland OR

The Portland Children’s Museum has fun, hands-on exhibits such as bridge building and construction, clay making, imitation grocery store shopping, a play theater, tree house and 1.3 acres of land for outdoor play and adventure.There is also a pet hospital where children can play veterinarian clinic.

All visitors are admitted for $10.75. Infants under age 1 are admitted for free. Seniors over 55 years and military service men and women are admitted for $9.75. For children and families seeking snacks, the Counter, and the Museum Café offers a menu selection of items that are great for snacking or having as lunch. The museum also offers café tables for families who come prepared with lunch bags and snacks. There is on-site parking available for $1.60 per hour. $4.00 can get visitors a full-day parking pass.

22. Exploratorium – San Francisco, California

Exploratorium - San Fran CA

The Exploratorium of San Francisco, CA exhibits hundreds of exhibits including games, observatory, domes, studio, and outdoor fun. It fuses science, entertainment, games and art in one space, making it the perfect place to visit with families and children of all ages.

Bay Area residents receive local discounted rates, which is about $5 to $7 less than standard admission fees. For adults between 18 and 64 years of age, standard admission is $29. Seniors, teachers, students, teens between 13 and 17 years of age, and people with disabilities pay $24 per admission. Children between 4 and 12 years of age pay $19. Children under 3 years of age are admitted for free. Members are also free. California state public school teachers are also admitted for free. For evening hours between 6PM and 10PM for adults over 18 years of age can enter the museum on Thursday nights for a $15 general admission free. The Tactile Dome admission fee is $15. The museum offers parking validation which offers discounts. Prepaid parking has 20% discounts. The SEAGLASS restaurant offers a great menu with a view for a sit-down dining experience. The Seismic Joint Café offers healthy lunch options and drinks for a take-out service.

Fun experiments and exhibits such as the Bubble Tray to make giant bubbles, solar X-ray activity and data analyses through Mapping Sunspots, examining chocolate through The Sweet Lure of Chocolate, and learning about rock candy recipes are all part of the museum’s diverse programs.

21. The Strong – Rochester, New York

061906_ 0164

061906_ 0164

The Strong in Rochester, New York is a children’s museum dedicated to interactive play, exploration and learning in a large, family-friendly location. This museum is considered one of the largest ones in the US. The Strong Museum combines research, collection and education all in one spot. It is great for families as well as students and teachers. This non-profit organization was built in part by the Margaret Woodbury Strong Trust.

The Strong is open almost every single day of the year and is close to all major roads and expressways, making it a convenient location for family trips. The museum also offers free parking for those. Parking is first-come, first-serve only so visitors are encouraged to arrive early. On festival days, the museum offers the parking lot for visitors to park their cars for just $7. These festivals include the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Park festivals, Pride Festival, Burger and Rib Fest, and the East End Fitness Festival.

Children under the age of 2 are admitted for free. Children over age 2 and adults are $13.50 per person for admission. The museum offers a college discount at a 2-for-1 rate. Students must show their student ID, and both visitors must be college students. Active-duty military men and women are also offered a $2 discount. There are several fast food restaurants within walking distance from the museum. For a sit-down dining experience, the Bill Gray’s Restaurant is available for dining out.

20. Madison Children’s Museum – Madison, Wisconsin

Madison Childrens Museum - Madison WI
The Madison Children’s Museum is dedicated to bringing inspiration, challenge and enlightenment to children of all ages through interactive learning and play. It has received numerous awards over the years for its celebratory features.

The Madison Children’s Museum admits all children under age 1 for free. Children and adults pay $7.95 per person for admission. Seniors and grandparents pay $6.95 per person. Museum members are admitted for free. There is plenty of public parking found close to the museum. For a family of four, a day trip to the museum can be arranged for under $50. Since the museum is located on the capital square, families can dine out at restaurants that are close to the museum.

The museum is currently branching out and making small adjustments such as a new program called “Adult Swim: Craft on Tap.” Kraftwerk plays while young adults (must be over 21 to participate) have beer and make arts and crafts. The museum is also great with plenty of events, classes, and activities.

19. Discovery Place, Charlotte, North Carolina

Discovery Place Charlotte

Discovery Place Charlotte

Discovery Place Museum of Charlotte, North Carolina is a great family museum to experience science, nature and, recreational activity. The museum also has an IMAX theater for a 3-D cinematic experience that is also educational. The Discovery Place was built to inspire, educate, and challenge children with exhibits centered on science, mathematics, technology, engineering, nature, and interactive experiences.

Tickets to admit adults is $15.00 per person. Children and seniors cost $12.00 per head. The IMAX Discovery Theater costs an additional $10.00 or a $10.00 flat rate for those who are only coming to see a film. Children are admitted at $9.00. The cost for the museum as well as the IMAX theater is $20.00 per adult and $17.00 per child. Seniors and military service men and women receive a $2.00 discount. EBT and WIC cardholders pay only $1 per head for admission and $5 for the IMAX tickets per person. Parking costs $8.00 per vehicle after the first hour, which is free. For EBT and WIC cardholders, the parking per vehicle costs $5.00.

18. EDVenture – Columbia, South Carolina

edventure

EDVenture museum of Columbia, South Carolina is an excellent place to have young children between the ages of 5 months to 5 years come and experience fun activities. EDVenture is designed to influence developing minds with educational and creative programs such as Fire and Life Safety, Big Ed Health, The Cooking Lab, and even Camp.

Admission for children under two and adults costs $11.50 per person. Seniors, educators, and military service men and women pay $10.50 per person. Group rates (15+ people with reservations) pay $8.50 per person. There is an on-site café which is great for snacking and lunching. Their café offers a diverse menu ranging from small bites to lunch meals. There’s also coffee for adults who need a quick pick-me-up. The museum is also wheelchair user accessible with elevators. Those traveling by car can easily park at the museum parking lot.

17. The Treehouse Museum – Ogden, Utah

treehouse-museum

The Treehouse Museum of Ogden, Utah is a great location for children and adults to experience interactive storytelling, culture, wooden horseback riding, a Big Red Barn, and other fun and educational programs. The Treehouse Museum also offers theater and art exhibits for those who seek creative and engaging performances.

Children between ages 1 and 12 are admitted for $7 per person. Adults over 13 pay only $5 per head. Infants under age 1 are admitted for free. The museum accommodates free visitors’ parking on site. A family of four can easily enjoy a full day at the Treehouse Museum for under $50. Food and drink is prohibited in the exhibit area but, families are encouraged to bring snacks or lunch bags to the Treehouse Museum lobby. There are also many restaurants within walking distance from the museum at the Junction.

16. Exploration Place – Wichita, Kansas

Exploration Place - Wichita KS

The Exploration Place of Wichita, Kansas is a science and creative museum that offers a diverse range of programs and interactive exhibits for children of all ages. This non-profit institution strives to encourage community learning and childhood development through a fun and inspired exhibits.

Aside from exhibits, there are pre-school programs that encourage hands-on learning for children between ages 3 and 5. The experimental classroom projects are centered on investigation, curiosity, inquisitiveness and discovery. These activities keep children engaged while they are also learning.

The Exploration Place offers admission to visitors between 12 and 64 years of age admission for $9.50 which is a standard admission. For plus 1, the fee goes up $3.00, and for plus 2, the fee goes up $5.00. You’ll save on costs by visiting the Museum as a family of three and up. A family of four can be admitted for under $50. Children between 3 and 11 years of age pay $6.00. Under age 2, admission is free. The Dome exhibit costs $5.00 per adult and $3.00 per child. Visitors can dine at the museum’s Waterway Café to enjoy snacks, beverages and, lunches.

The museum is also a great place to encourage community activity and learning. For those seeking volunteer options, the Exploration Place is a great place to contribute your time and energy to.

15. Minnesota Children’s Museum – St. Paul, Minnesota

Minnesota Childrens Museum - St Paul MN

The Minnesota Children’s Museum has dedicated thirty years to children’s developmental education through a creative and interactive learning at the museum. The Museum not only hosts dozens of special events throughout the year through thoughtful and entertaining programing but also shows plenty of exhibits, such as Arthur’s World. There are lots of activities for children to engage in that are both fun and educational. There’s also an exhibit called “Broken? Fix It!” which teaches kids how to fix broken vehicles, electronics and bikes through simple tools. This hands-on, practical learning is great for kids to experience problem-solving.

Admission for children over one and adults is $9.95 per head. Members receive free admission, as do infants under age 1. Parking costs $5.00 for 3 hours. A family of 4 can visit the museum for under $50. For snacks and beverages, families can visit the vending area for a quick refueling before entering the galleries again. Food and beverages are not allowed inside any exhibits. Near the restaurant are fast food restaurants for a simple lunch where families can sit down to eat. These restaurants are located just over the skywalk.

14. Center for Puppetry Arts – Atlanta, Georgia

Center for Puppetry Arts - Atlanta GA

The Center for Puppetry Arts of Atlanta, Georgia is a great place to bring a family of young children to, to experience storytelling, puppetry, and performance. For the last 30+ years, the Center for Puppetry Arts has been combining puppetry and education for children to inspire, engage and educate in the city of Atlanta. The puppet shows are not the only performances that are found at this center. It also has a museum dedicated to culture, education and learning, which is great for families to experience together. The collection of archives at this museum includes historical books, videotapes, photographs and other documentation relevant to puppetry.

Tickets for performances vary according to the show. They range from between $14.00 to $20.00 for all visitors. Children under 2 are admitted for free. The museum also offers a film series. Tickets cost $10.50 per person regardless of age. The films at this museum are all family friendly and rated G for general audiences. Parking is available on-site, and it is free. Visitors are encouraged to bring snacks and lunch bags to enjoy at the picnic tables in Harlequin Hall of the museum, but food and beverages are not allowed inside the exhibits. There is also a vending machine for quick snacks.

13. Boston Children’s Museum – Boston, Massachusetts

Boston Childrens Museum - Boston MA

The Boston Children’s Museum has been serving the Boston community’s youth for over a hundred years now. This non-profit organization has received recognition from educational institutions from all over for its excellence in development, research, exhibits, and programs. The Boston Children’s Museum is an enormous institution that has over 50,000 collections on display for children and families to view and learn from. The programs are centered on science, math, art, culture, as well as health.

Admission rates are $16 per person regardless of being a child or adult. There is free admission for children under a year old. On Target-sponsored Fridays, the museum’s admission rate is just $1 per head between 5PM and 9PM. Members also have exclusive hours on weekends between 9AM and 10AM. The museum is closed on Mondays. There is no parking garages on site, however, street parking or parking lots near the museum are available at an affordable rate. On busier days, taking public transportation is strongly recommended. There are plenty of great restaurants that are family friendly within walking distance from the museum. The museum also welcomes any families that bring in food or beverages to dine at the first-floor lunch room or outside in the Milk Bottle Plaza when the weather is warm. Feel free to pack a snack and plenty of water.

12. WOW Children’s Museum – Lafayette, Colorado

Wow Childrens Museum-Lafayette, CO

The WOW Children’s Museum of Lafayette, Colorado is a non-profit organization dedicated to children’s learning. The museum offers a diverse range of programs and exhibits to inspire and challenge all kinds of minds, but all dedicated to inspiring creativity, fun learning and imagination. The science exhibits are especially great for getting children to learn in a creative function through experiments that spark curiosity. Children as young as a year and a half years old can come participate in some of these hands-on programs. Parents, musicians, artists, and teachers can all gather in one spot to experience both culture and community. The WOW Children’s Museum is an excellent place to bring families for a day trip. Parking is also available on site.

The WOW Children’s Museum of Lafayette admits all adults for free. Children between 1 and 11 years are admitted for $9 per head. Children below one year of age are admitted for free. Families are encouraged to bring lunch bags and snacks to enjoy at the picnic tables outdoors or snacking area at the museum. You can easily bring a family of four and enjoy your time at the museum for under $50.

11. Children’s Museum of Denver – Denver, Colorado

Childrens Museum of Denver - Denver CO

Children’s Museum of Denver is Colorado’s non-profit educational institution dedicated to encouraging the youth of Denver to learn, explore, experience and create. Over 350,000 visitors make it to the museum every year.

Admission for children under age 1 is free. One-year-olds are admitted for $8.00, and admission for 2+ years and adults is $10.00 per person. Seniors over 60+ are admitted for $8.00 per person. Members are admitted for free, and military men and women receive a $2 discount. The museum offers free on-site parking, as well as stroller cubbies and lockers for just fifty cents. The museum also has party rooms for visitors who wish to throw a birthday party for their kids.

Visitors who wish to bring food and drink inside may do so but not eat or drink inside galleries. The museum’s Eat Street Café is great for stopping by for a drink or snack. There are plenty of grab and go selections. Museum membership holders receive a 10% discount on $5+ purchases. Outdoor seating is available for those who wish to eat, so visitors are encouraged to pack a lunch bag

10. Children’s Museum of Cleveland – Cleveland, Ohio

Childrens Museum of Cleveland - Cleveland OH

The Children’s Museum of Cleveland is a great place to bring kids who seek excitement, play, and creative learning. The Big Red Barn, for example, is a permanent exhibition that imitates a real barn setting but provides a safe and fun place for kids to interact and play. There is also a House and Hospital exhibit where kids can play “house” and “hospital” with toys and a small play setting. These play settings are perfect especially for young children between ages 1 and 7.

Admission for all visitors is $11 except for infants under 12 months old. There is free parking on-site. Visitors are encouraged to pack a snack or a lunch bag to bring to the museum. The museum also offers small snacks, juice boxes, bottled water and coffee for purchase as well.

9. Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh- Pittsburgh, PA

Childrens-Museum-Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is affectionately known as Kidsburgh. With a number of fantastic tourist attractions around the city, one of out top museum choices is the Children’s Museum. In 2014 the museum boasted record-setting attendance records, in large part to the popularity of Bounce and acclaimed children’s author, Eric Carle’s traveling exhibit. With more than 80,000 square feet of space the museum features permanent hands-on, interactive exhibit areas at the Museum include The Studio, Theater, Waterplay, Attic, Nursery, Backyard and MAKESHOP®.

The Children’s Museum hosts multiple opportunities for group events, including professional development boot camps for teachers, school-age programming along with pre-kindergarten/head start programming. During your visit be sure and stop by the Big Red Room Cafe, which recently become a member of the UPMC Health Plan’s Dining Smart Community program. This program features healthy dining options for patrons. It also allows non-museum patrons to take advantage of the cafe space. The Big Red Room Cafe is open daily from 11am – 4pm.

8. Port Discovery Children’s Museum – Baltimore, Maryland

Port-Discovery-Childrens-Museums

The Port Discovery Children’s Museum is considered one of the top twelve children’s museums in the country according to Forbes magazine. There are three floors of exhibits dedicated to interactive and creative learning for children between the ages of 0 to 12. Children love the museum’s exhibits called “Tot Trails,” Kick It Up!” and “Wonders of Water.”

Price of admission is $14.95 per person for adults and children over age 2. Members and kids under age 2 are admitted free. Military men and women also receive discounts on admission. Museum visitors may park vehicles at Harbor Park Garage for $7. There is also easy access parking at the Market Place or Lombard Street near the museum building. The museum validates all tickets for parking.

The Museum does allow families to bring lunch bags and snacks. Although eating and drinking are not allowed inside galleries, there is a cafeteria for folks who wish to eat at the museum site. There are also several restaurants within walking distance from the museum. For Mexican cuisine, Mex Baltimore is available for guests to visit, and a 10% is offered to museum visitors who have their wristbands. Lockers and coat checks are available at $1 to $2.

7. Kohl Children’s Museum – Chicago, Illinois

Kohl Chldrens Museum

Kohl Children’s Museum brings fun exhibits and programs dedicated to nurturing young minds under age 8. Kohl Children’s Museum staff are trained educational professionals who help design programs and exhibits to bring children the best and most memorable experience during their museum visit. The museum is also has a mission to inspire children of all races and backgrounds. Their diversity statement is a source of pride, and the museum encourages cooperation among children of color to be inquisitive and open to discovering more about the self. Over 330,000 visitors make it to the Kohl Children’s Museum every year. There are 17 interactive exhibits for hands-on activity, and plenty of families take advantage of these resources during their visit each year.

Admission is $11 per person. Children under age 1 are free. Grandparents and seniors over 55 years of age pay just $10 per person. Members have free admission. Military service men and women also receive a discount. The museum is wheelchair user accessible, and there is a nursing station as well as a stroller parking site for visitors. Strollers are not allowed inside galleries. For families with lots to carry, lockers are available at the museum for just a quarter. If visitors get hungry, Cosi Café is located at the entrance for simple snacks and lunches. There is free on-site parking at the museum. Should the lot be full, the Glen Town Center next door offers free garage parking as well.

6. Museum of Science and Industry – Chicago, Illinois

Museum of Science and Industry - Chicago IL

The Museum of Science and Industry of Chicago, Illinois is an award-winning institution full of exhibits that immerse children in a world of science and engineering. The museum’s exhibits and the ominimax theater are all for inspiring and encouraging children to appreciate the complex and illuminating field of science.

Admission for museum entry is $18 per adult, $11 for children between ages 3-11, and $17 for seniors over the age of 65. There are ticket packages and group deals available as well. Parking costs $22 per vehicle for the general public. Premium membership holders pay $14. Household premium membership holders can enjoy free parking. Visitors may also enjoy restaurants at the museum for lunch, snacks and, dessert.

For teachers interested in arranging a field trip, the Museum of Science and Industry offer science lesson trips. There are also professional development courses that help train tomorrow’s young leaders. After school programs and classroom resources are also available at the Museum of Science and Industry.

5. Glazer Children’s Museum – Tampa, Florida

Glazer Childrens Museum - Tampa FL

The Glazer Children’s Museum of Tampa, Florida is a wonderful museum that provides space for interactive learning, activity, and developmental growth through challenging and creative exhibits. There are over 170 exhibits which are all interactive. Children can try out different activities by referring to the Daily Programming, which vary each day. Children also can throw birthday parties at the museum with friends and family.

Children between ages 1 and 12 are admitted for $9.50. Adults pay $15 per head. Military service men and women, educators and seniors pay $12.50. Parking is available at the Poe Parking Garage for $1.20 per hour. For those seeking a place to have lunch, there is a Subway nearby to enjoy in the lobby, inside the restaurant or at the park, which is within walking distance.

4. Children’s Museum of Houston – Houston, Texas

Childrens Museum of Houston

The Children’s Museum of Houston is a non-profit educational institution dedicated to developing young minds between ages 1 and 12 through innovation and creativity. The Museum hosts free family nights every Thursday between 5 PM and 8 PM so that children and families can enjoy the museum free of charge. The museum is open 7 days a week, including major holidays such as Labor Day, Fourth of July, and Memorial Day so that kids with parents who work full-time can choose the museum as a destination spot for enjoying quality time together on their days off.

Admission per person including adults and children over age 1 is $10.00 per head. Seniors and military service men and women/veterans are admitted for $9.00. Parking at the museum costs $9 for more than 3 hours. A family of four can experience the museum for under $50. And for back-to-school season, kids can receive free vaccinations at the museum starting in late August.

Exhibits at the museum include cyber chasing, construction building, environmental exhibits dedicated to sustainability and ecology, and in the fall, the museum hosts an autumn fest dedicated to exploring the moon’s phases and the harvest season.

3. Children’s Museum of Phoenix – Phoenix, Arizona

Childrens Museum of Phoenix - Phoenix Az

The Children’s Museum of Phoenix is a non-profit organizational institution that encourages fun, creativity, and stimulates curiosity. There is over 48,000 square feet for children to engage in various activities guided by the museum’s hands-on exhibits which encourage experimentation and fun. There are also music, art, math, science and yoga classes for children and families to participate in. The Children’s Museum of Phoenix received numerous awards over the years for its excellent programming. This museum is ideal for children between ages 1 and 10.

Admission for all visitors is $11.00 except for children under age one who are admitted for free. The museum offers discounts to families participating in low-income housing programs in the state of Arizona. Free parking is available at the museum, but if the lots are full, there is parking spots available at Civic Plaza East Garage, Heritage Square, and the Arizona Center, which costs a fee. The SpoonZ Express is the museum café that offers salads, pizza, Panini, sandwiches, and other snacks. Visitors are encouraged to eat at the café, as well as the designated eating area with their lunch bags and snacks. No hot coffee/tea/hot chocolate is allowed on premises. No alcohol is allowed on premises. These prohibitions are for the children’s safety. Cold drinks such as sodas, iced tea and water must have a screw-top lid. This is to prevent spills, slips and falls.

2. California Science Center – Los Angeles, California

California Science Center - Exposition Park LA

The California Science Center in Los Angeles, California is a great place to bring families on a full day trip. General admission to the museum is free, so families can enjoy a full day for free, save for costs on parking and meals. Parking costs $10 for cars and school buses. Parking costs $25 for oversize vehicles and charter buses. The parking booth accepts cash only. The California Science Center also has several lunch options on site. The Science Center has a café with menu options for kids and adults, including hot and cold meals.

The California Science Center has exhibits such as Ecosystems, Creative World and World of Life. These science-themed exhibits examine marine life, eco life, and cell life in interactive and creative ways to bring children closer to education in a fun and playful way.

1. Children’s Museum – Indianapolis, Indiana

Childrens Museum -Indianapolis IN

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, IN is one of the world’s largest museums dedicated to children’s education, recreation, and creativity. It is a 472,900 square-foot institution that is built on 29 acres of land giving children plenty of rooms to explore and discover. The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis show exhibits dedicated to science, international culture, art, history and, of course, dinosaurs. Founded in 1925, this non-profit organization it is also one of the city’s oldest museums in the US dedicated to children and family learning.

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis has regular exhibits such as Dinosphere: Now You’re in Their World, as well as Dale Chihuly’s Fireworks of Glass. The museum’s The Power of Children: Making a Difference shows visitors the kind of creative impact that young minds have in today’s world by exhibiting their works in from history. The Science Works exhibit at the museum gives children a hands-on experience related to natural science. Kids can try out rock climbing, race boats on a creek, go looking for frogs in a pond, play hula hoop, and try digging up the earth and loading up rocks at a small construction site. These exhibits are all free with the admission ticket. Free parking is also available on site.

The museum has a food court on site. The café and dining room serve snacks and beverages between 8 AM and 5 PM. Between 11 AM and 3 PM, a lunch menu is available. Snacks include fruit, baked goods, coffee, tea, fountain sodas, bottled waters, and yogurt. Lunch options include sandwiches for kids such as ham and cheese, turkey and cheese, PB&J, and a hot dog. There are also salad and soup options each day. Mac and cheese available daily, and there are sandwich options for adults as well. The food court items cost extra and are not part of the admission ticket.

The museum offers a basic membership deal that costs $159 a year. The membership gives access to at least two adults of the same family and all children in the family who are under 21 years old. If families make at least 2 visits a year, this is the most cost-efficient package. Any youngsters under the age of 2 have free admission. Otherwise, admission for children between the ages of 2 and 17 costs $18.50 each. Adults between the ages of 18-59 pay $21.50 per admission, and seniors—anyone above age 60) pays $20.50 per admission. For families that qualify for the Access Pass, which includes Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, food stamps and/or Hoosier Healthwise Insurance, cost of admission is just $1.00 per family; these families must show documentation and a state ID in order to receive the Access Pass benefit; benefits include free parking, a 10% discount at the museum food court, and a discounted rate for signing children up for the Starpoint Summer Camp. Applications can be found on the website.