Thursday, August 16, 2012
Up the road from us is a small city with a "museum district", which is a cluster of 3 museums near each other. On Wednesdays they have a deal with one admission price for all three, and yesterday we met my mother there and took advantage of that midweek deal.
Museums have become so much more interactive in recent years, so the kids had drawers to open to find things, a scavenger hunt sheet for the history museum, things to sit on, climb on, play with, etc.
As they sat in the covered wagon, my mom told them which pieces of her furniture actually are family pieces that did come out in a wagon, and they marveled at how small the wagons were to get all your household belongings moved. We have a pump organ, currently residing at my brother's house, that was a family heirloom and was brought to Kansas in a covered wagon by my music-loving german great-great's. The kids tried to imagine that pump organ in the wagon - it would take up half of it!
Then it was on to the art museums. One is a museum of glass art - something pretty special!
That museum is a sort of working art studio as well, with the "Hot Box" open to the public to come and watch. They talk to us and do little demonstrations as they work, and they have an artist in residence who is creating pieces here for a few weeks.
They also have an art studio for the kids, and a cool ongoing project where kids can submit their design drawings and about once a month they select a drawing and turn it into a glass sculpture. If the kids' designs are selected, they'll be notified so they can come back and see the glass piece. Both kids had fun doing some drawings and hoping it might someday be a sculpture.
Then it was on to the other art museum, which featured a somewhat odd exhibit of "blanket art". These were all real people's blankets, with little stories about the blanket written on tags.
The kids also enjoyed this interactive sculpture a great deal. A sort of felt cave that you were allowed to go inside, with felt stalactites and a little projected figure talking or telling a story - it was hard to tell what he was saying but the effect was a bit spooky.
I let the kids try to photograph this:
All told, we spent 6 hours doing museums. It was a pretty great day!