Tired of the same old installation pieces at your favorite museums? Think your children will be bored to tears looking at Impressionist paintings all day long? Grab the entire family, and head out to these family-friendly exhibits for a little bit of whimsy that are chock full of fun, excitement, and even educational value. Some are temporary, some exhibits are permanent, and all are appropriate for one to 90 years old.
Children’s Museum Of Pittsburgh
10 Children’s Way
Pittsburgh, PA 15212
Date: May 17, 2015 from 1:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Live Show: The Josh and Gab Show! is a perfect way to introduce your kids to theater if they haven’t yet been exposed. Of course, you have concerns about taking your two year old to see Disney On Ice, so why not test a thirty minute presentation first? Your entire family will be delighted with the performance from Gab Bonesso and Josh Verbanets, both Pittsburgh-based writers, performers, educators, and public personalities. This super-silly show combines hilarious, kid-friendly humor, with high energy musical numbers that will have everyone leaping out of their seats and singing along.
Mattress Factory: Mini Factory
500 Sampsonia Way
Pittsburgh, PA 15212-4444
The second and fourth Saturday of every month, take the kids to Pittsburgh’s own Mattress Factory for Mini Factory, an hourlong session that explores sound, sight, touch, music, and literature. Geared toward kids aged three to five and their caregivers, this program, weighing in at an affordable $5.00 per session, allows youngsters to explore a variety of themes and installations, participate in story time, and work on a collaborative hands-on project. The older kids can take advantage of the Mattress Factory’s other breathtaking installations, while their younger siblings get a chance to play with mom or dad, grandma or grandpa – it’s a win-win for the entire family.
Carnegie Science Center
One Allegheny Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15212
Head over to Carnegie Science Center for Parents-Kids Adventures that run Mondays from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m., and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. Kids aged three to five with a caregiver, are admitted to this fun program for $10/$12 (Member/Nonmember). Learn about the different parts of plants, participate in story time, learn about healthy eating, and even explore outdoor science. Each session has a different theme, and will titillate young kids and their families, while offering fun and education. Older siblings can explore the rest of the Science Center and SportsWorks, or even grab an ice cream at the cafe, so everyone can enjoy this family-friendly event that will keep you coming back for more.
Related: Weirdest Museums In Pittsburgh
Senator John Heinz History Center
1212 Smallman St.
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
Take your family to meet the man who inspired multiple generations to “be a neighbor.” Mister Roger’s Neighborhood has a new home at the Senator John Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh’s own Strip District. Your kids will love seeing and touching Fred Roger’s entryway and living room set, King Friday XIII’s Castle, the Great Oak Tree, Picture Picture, McFeely’s “Speedy Delivery” tricycle, and a wide variety of additional items from the show, including King Friday XIII’s telephone, Henrietta Pussycat’s outfit, Harriett Cow’s desk, and the bench that Mister Rogers sat on during each episode. Also on display is a life-like figure of Fred Rogers, which makes for great photos with everyone in your group. Tour the museum, and make sure the kids don’t miss Kidsburgh, the History Center’s own playspace for little ones.
945 Liberty Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
If your kids love comics and superheroes, visit the only museum in the country dedicated to these very things, Pittsburgh’s very own ToonSeum. The museum is a small boutique-style venue wholly dedicated to the comic and cartoon arts. Exhibits rotate every few months, with family-friendly activities constantly in flux. This is a great way to introduce children to the arts while some of ToonSeum’s exhibits are not hands-on. kids will learn to appreciate tangible pieces, by visiting each of the museum’s 100 wall pieces. Make sure to schedule your visit around one of ToonSeum’s wildly fun, and interactive events, and watch your child’s love of cartoons come to life.
Related: Five Must-See Museums In Pittsburgh
Nikki Tiani-Moroney is a full time mum of two boys, wife of a professional poker player/photographer/amateur pencil-sharpening competitor and writer from Pittsburgh, PA. When she isn’t studiously neglecting her housework in favor of a good book, she’s out simultaneously fighting crime and picking up sidewalk litter while savoring an occasional cigarette. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.