We received tickets to Pittsburgh area attractions from Visit Pittsburgh in exchange for this review. Opinions expressed are 100% my own!
The Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh is a wonderful place for children of all ages. Their mission is to provide innovative experiences that inspire joy, creativity and curiosity. They definitely have achieved their mission goal. This isn’t the largest Children’s Museum that we have visited, but its three floors were packed full of fun that really kept the attention of my super active almost 5 year old.
Our first stop was the very large art studio where we did a basic painting, but they also have stations where you can create a screen print, string art, clay molding, and even an Eric Carle(The Very Hungry Caterpillar) inspired collage. It is recommended that you stop here first so that any artwork that you create can be left to dry. You can pick it back up when you leave! It’s a great art area and very open, they provide smocks and a hand wash area to keep those hands and clothes clean (mostly).
In the Makeshop, we were instantly drawn to a wall of ramps that you can set up to let a ball fall from way up high to the catch below. It was great fun for Sebastian to problem solve when his setup didn’t quite work out like planned. They also had an area for sewing, circuit building, and a very cool looking area where you can upcycle various objects into something else! I saw a creation that someone had made that looked like a car with cd’s for wheels. What a great way to show kids how to reuse items instead of throwing them away! I can’t wait to check those areas out the next time we visit.
Still on the Main floor is The “Attic” room where children can explore and find fun surprises! The Gravity Room has a 25 degree tilted floor to play with the senses as well as other illusions to discover before sliding down the twisty slide!
The “Garage” room has lots of fun mechanical things to try. Hoist up a ball to the ceiling and watch it zip through a series of loops and ramps. If it misses, heads up! the soft ball falls to the floor below! Climb the rope ladder (or take the stairs) and drop a parachute off the tower above. Slide down the spiral slide when you’re done. Here you can also sit on the Neighborhood Trolley from Mister Roger’s Neighborhood!
In the “XOXO” exhibit (Open until September 21) it’s all about Love, Forgiveness, and Feelings. Sebastian and I talked about what made him scared. Which apparently is monsters. We drew a monster on a piece of paper and he shredded it in a hand crank shredder. It was great to hear him say “Now I don’t have to be scared any more!” after shredding his fears. We also saw what our voice looks like when we say things like “I love you.” or “Stop it!”.
The second floor houses the “Nursery”. This is a great area for the younger visitors with lots of sensory play and even a quiet area for reading or nursing.
Luckily, I was alerted before hand to bring my son’s swimming clothes. The 3rd floor has a waterplay area where they can have some serious fun and they get pretty wet doing so. They do provide smocks for those that want to stay dry, but swimsuits are welcome in the area. My son is a builder. He loves to problem solve and build things and spent an entire 2 hours in an area that has water spouts in the floor that you can connect pipes and connectors or sprinklers to. He tried to organize some of the kids to help him build something really intricate! There is a big water wheel, chutes where you can build dams, an area to paint with water, and even an area to just play in the rain! Be sure to bring a change of clothes or a swimsuit for this area!
For lunch we ate at the Big Red Room Cafe in the museum. It was reasonably priced and very good! I had a yummy grilled chicken pita wrap and Seb opted for pepperoni pizza.
The museum takes a lot from the philosophy of Fred Rogers, who is a Pittsburgh icon. A lot of the areas have some displays dedicated to him. You can find even one of the original sweaters that he wore in the Makeshop area. Did you know his mother knitted them?
I was truly impressed with our visit to the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh. I loved the amount of detail that went into the planning of the exhibits, from using REAL materials, and not just representations of things, and the attention to staying Green. The electricity in the museum is 100% renewable energy! I can’t say enough good things about our experience! If you are ever in the Pittsburgh area, definitely stop by!
10:00 am – 5:00 pm Every Day
Children 2-18: $12
Senior Citizen: $12
Children Under 2: Free
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