Minnesota Children’s Museum focuses its summertime efforts on family memory-making and learning with distinctive experiences for youngsters that will be a highlight of their warm-weather season. Since fun is contagious, grown-ups will enjoy themselves and the sense of excitement on the little ones’ faces.
The museum’s summertime exhibits and experiences promise to spark creativity, curiosity, and laughter. Rube Goldberg: The World of Hilarious Invention! lets visitors activate chain-reaction contraptions made up of everyday items for over-complicated, wildly inefficient purposes—physics with a goofy grin. A world of inner adventure opens up in Creativity Jam in the Target Gallery, where kids make personalized journals and collaborate on an art installation about courage and the power of creative daydreaming.
Kids can take a trip through a “cosmic junkyard” in Imaginopolis. There, they can crawl through a black hole, play astronaut at the control panel of an interstellar spaceship, and decode messages from (imaginary) extraterrestrials. Aspiring engineers will gravitate to making machines, an interactive experience where kids and their families use simple materials to create basic machines such as pulleys, levers, and catapults. Those skills can be applied at the next level in The Landing, which gives youngsters a framework for testing theories and solving problems in engineering and design—a stimulating playground of thinking and creativity.
These same values of invention and creativity figure heavily into July 13’s Celebrate Creativity Street Fest, a free event on the street right outside the museum. Kids and their families will be encouraged to partake in music, live performances, and open-ended play activities to spark imagination and creation (and spontaneous smiles).
Because education and discovery can’t be packed into a single day, especially with today’s kids turning into tomorrow’s life-long learners, the Children’s Museum also offers a series of Think Big Workshops throughout the summer. These hands-on experiences are meant to empower kids to explore, flex those big brains, and gain that special satisfaction of solving problems. Workshops include: “STEM Bunnies,” exploring science and math with real rabbits; “Slime Making with Madeline,” starring a teen expert on making gooey stuff; “Yungpreneur with Aniki Allen,” for kids interested in fashion and design; and “Candyland Escape Adventure,” where kids use their wits to get out of playful problems.
And while parents love seeing their youngsters having fun, sometimes it’s their turn to play. The Adults@Play Summer Hangout is a June 27 adults-only takeover of the museum, with food, drinks, and live music lending a chance to loosen up. C’mon, with a life-size billiard game, sand art, and s’mores, the grown-ups get a chance for some goofy good times of their own.
Minnesota Children’s Museum makes excitement and learning their mission throughout the year. This summer the good times are front and center, with memories galore and a sense of how much fun it is to learn, grow, and feel empowered—this summer and for all the years ahead.