Archways Near the Entrance of Memorial Hall
Please Touch Museum in Philadelphia
The Please Touch Museum, located in the renovated Memorial Hall in Philadelphia's Fairmount Park, offers much for kids to explore. The museum is part funhouse, but also contains many science-related exhibits to encourage kids to roll up their sleeves and put on their thinking caps while they enjoy some hands-on fun. Kids here are encouraged to try out, and as the museum name suggests, touch the exhibits.
Memorial Hall itself is stunning. From first sight the museum looks like fine artwork belongs in the space. In fact, Memorial Hall was the site of the Philadelphia Museum of Art from 1928 until the Please Touch Museum opened at this location in 2007. The designers of the museum have used the building architecture well to create a pleasant experience. The glassed atrium section of the building that contains the old Woodside Park carousel is particularly stunning. This 8000 square foot area has the feel of being outdoors year-round. The restored hand-carved carousel was originally built in Philadelphia and was located in nearby Woodside Park. Some of the carved animals on the carousel are as old as 1908. It is a nice touch to include this piece of Philadelphia history in this museum for a new generation to enjoy.
Classic exhibits like River Adventures allows kids to get their hands wet playing in a water setting designed just for kids. Kids can have plenty of interactive fun in this area, but it will be hard for parents to encourage their children to leave this area. There are overcoats available to help keep kids clothes dry for the rest of the day.
Roadside Attractions at the Please Touch Museum
The Roadside Attractions exhibit contains some full-scale examples of public transportation vehicles such as a bus and monorail. There is also a garage that has vehicles kids can pretend to build and repair. The most popular display in this exhibit is the backhoe that kids can control. This is one place kids can get an understanding of how hydraulics help people do work by giving them a hands-on experience.
Flight Fantasy at the Please Touch Museum
The Flight Fantasy exhibit has plenty of science-related displays for kids to explore. This area has several rooms with a space and flight theme. One of the most unique displays is where kids can build their own foam flying objects with different parts. A conveyor system then transports the flying object up near the very high ceiling and releases it into flight. Kids can test to see which objects and combinations of parts fly the best.
The museum also contains other exhibits that appeal to younger kids like the Wonderland exhibit. The Wonderland exhibit is similar to a funhouse, but has an Alice in Wonderland theme including mixed up mirrors and a maze. Kids like this area, but stay close to them because if it is busy they can quickly get out of your sight. The City Capers exhibit is very popular because it contains a play fireman area and the best example of a pretend supermarket you will probably see anywhere. The Rainforest Rhythm exhibit allows kids to make music jungle-style. There are conga drums, rainmakers and other interesting things to make noises which keep kids interested. The sounds and theme of the area have a wonderful rainforest feel. This exhibit is located directly next to the carousel glass atrium and the museum's restaurant on the main floor.
Vintage Carousel at the Please Touch Museum
The Please Touch museum is located at 4231 Avenue of the Republic on the west side of Fairmount Park. The museum is fully wheelchair and stroller accessible. The cost of entry to the museum is $16 for kids and adults. A paid parking lot is available on the side of the museum, but there is also some available street parking that is closer to the entry doors.
PLEASE TOUCH MUSEUM DETAILS
- Location: Philadelphia, PA
- Science Learned: Energy, physics and hydrology
(check schedule online for holidays)
- Tuesday-Sat.: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
- Sunday: 11:00 AM – 5:00 PM
- Cost: See website to verify
- Adults (13 and older): $16.00
- Kids (1-12): $16.00
- Children under 1: Free
- URL: www.pleasetouchmuseum.org
Address: 4231 Avenue of the Republic
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