We absolutely LOVE the Indianapolis Children's Museum! We have four kids in our family (five, if you count me, but I'm the dad) and we all have a great experience every time we visit the Children's Museum. We usually arrive at 10am, right when the museum opens, so we can explore without much of a crowd. Our first destination each time is the fourth floor, right to the carousel. Depending on who we are with (we have a family +2 pass to bring visitors) our visit after the carousel is always different. We usually only have time to visit two floors per visit, because there is so much to see!
All of our kids love to send coins down the funnel on the way to Science Works on the fourth floor. Our youngest two absolutely adore the playscape on the third floor. We still have a 10x10 photo on our wall, taken in 2007, of one of our children with an apron on in the water area, holding a plastic boat with a giant smile on his face! Our oldest two children love the Egypt exhibit on the second floor, and all three girls love the Barbie exhibit. All of our children love the dinosaur exhibit, especially the "excavation" area where goggles are required.
At our last visit, which was yesterday for our son's birthday, our son and oldest daughter spent 25-30 minutes using tweezers to search a container of rocks for small pieces of amber, quartz, and dinosaur bones. They would hand each small rock or fossil to a very kind volunteer who would tell them what he thought about their discovery.
We also love the Chihuly glass exhibit and especially the large arrangement of glass pieces that is visible from all four stories. On one occasion, we were fortunate to be at the museum when someone was working on cleaning the glass pieces. He was hanging from the ceiling with a long pole that had some type of feather duster attached. The kids enjoyed spending some quality time watching the worker carefully dust each individual piece of glass art in this large sculpture.
One of our favorite memories of the Children's Museum was visiting this last Christmas Eve. We were there before the museum opened, and it was already pretty busy. While we waited in the large open area by the water clock for the gates to open, about forty workers lined themselves above us on the second floor balcony looking down. After welcoming us to the museum, they all took out large white pom-poms and threw them down on us like snowballs! The kids loved it! They also loved receiving beautiful white polar bear stuffed animals later on during the visit. Not to mention going down the slide a few times, which is always a blast!
It is never fun to leave the Children's Museum. We have found a great solution to help with this transition. Our last stop for each visit is to the cafeteria, where each child gets to pick out their own giant cookie! This is the only time when our kids do not have to eat a regular meal before their dessert. They love it, and they know that we will be heading back to the parking garage afterwards. Because we visit so often, they really don't mind taking a cookie in exchange for leaving after a great time at the Children's Museum. Even if it wasn't the biggest and best in the world, it will always be our favorite place to visit as a family and the place where we always bring our out-of-state guests. We love you, our Indianapolis Children's Museum!
Name: Alan Culwell