With miles of beaches, a long and exciting history, beautiful architecture, and so much more, Chicago has something to offer almost any visitor to our city. While the Windy City caters to any vacation-goer, Chicago is home to a gem of a destination for families looking for some G-rated fun. Located at Chicago’s historic Navy Pier, the Chicago Children’s Museum offers families with children of all ages a chance to learn, create, discover, and have loads of fun.
Since its opening in 1995 at its current location at the Navy pier, the Chicago Children’s Museum has welcomed more than 657,000 visitors each year making it one of our city’s most popular attractions. Originally named the Express-Way Children’s Museum, the Chicago Children’s Museum was founded in answer to funding cut-backs within Chicago’s public schools. Initially opened within the walls of the Chicago Public Library in 1982, the museum opened with a single exhibit aptly titled “Getting to Know Hue”, an exhibit aimed at educating youth about color and light.
Since it’s opening, the Chicago Children’s Museum has grown to include three floors which house a number of fun exhibits aimed at educating children of all ages.
Chicago Children’s Museum Dinosaur Expedition
Working in partnership with Project Exploration, the Chicago Children’s Museum’s Dinosaur Expedition is a specially designed recreation of an actual paleontological dig lead by Chicago palaeontologist Paul Sereno. The historic dig which the Dinosaur Expedition is modelled after was the site of the discovery of never-before uncovered dinosaur species, the Suchomimus. A skeleton of the newly discovered species of dinosaur is on display in the Expedition.
Within the Chicago Children’s Museum’s Dinosaur Expedition, children of all ages are given the opportunity to participate in the excavation of dinosaur bones. Additionally, young minds can compare uncovered artifacts such as skulls, teeth, and claws with the bones of a Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton. The entire experience is meant to give young minds a look at what life was like for the Paul Sereno lead group who uncovered the Suchomimus.
Chicago Children’s Museum Kid’s Town
For an exhibit geared more toward children five years and younger, the Chicago Children’s Museum has just the thing. Kid’s Town is a pint sized version of our adult world. Here, toddlers and small children get to act out the day-to-day going-ons of adults in a child-sized environment with the goal of having fun and learning. Kid’s Town is a place where children can engage in a bit of make-believe as they go grocery shopping at the Kid’s Town Grocery Store. They will also have the chance to change a tire, take the car for a car wash and drive a bus through a child-sized cityscape.
Chicago Children’s Museum Play It Safe
For children aged three and up, the Chicago Children’s Museum features their Play It Safe exhibit aimed at teaching children and parents all about fire safety. The Play It Safe exhibit gives children the chance to step into the the role of a firefighter. They will be allowed get a hands on look at authentic firefighting gear slide down a real firehouse pole, and have a look at a real fire truck! Additionally, there is an area designed to simulate a smoke filled room which will teach children how to escape in the event of an actual fire.
The Chicago Children’s Museum’s unique combination of fun and learning makes it the perfect destination for families looking to get away for a vacation together. Staying at the Chicago Hillside Hotel puts you and your family conveniently close to the Navy Pier and the Chicago Children’s Museum and offers excellent family-friendly accommodations. For more information on visiting our city and staying with us, please contact us.