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Thursday, November 11, 2010

Museum of Natural and Cultural History

Those of you who know our family knows that I (and hopefully now the rest of the family) have a love affair with museums. I am particularly interested in obscure or off-the-beaten-path museums. Sometimes, the smaller and seeminly hokier the museum, the greater the treasure housed inside. We surely found it at the Mususeum of Natural & Cultural History (aka The Kool Aid Museum). Who knew it was a three story building absolutely PACKED with exhibits?

First, we'll share some of our Kool Aid photos.

Nathan & the Kool Aid Man

Mom & Nathan by a Kool Aid smile mural

Nathan & Rebekah - The cutest sales people ever!

Then there's the rest of the museum. I've never seen so many pieces of taxidermy in one building before. They also had a rocks/stones exhibit that rivals the one touted as the best in the state. There is a gun exhibit that goes back to pre-civil war. (Any gun collectors must add this to their list of places to visit!) There's a coin and currency collection, antique cars, a planetarium (included in your ticket price) and more that I'm surely leaving out. We went for about 2.5 hours in the morning and then had to leave to get lunch and get the boys to take their theory tests for the State Music Festival. We ate an early dinner and went back for three more hours and closed the building down for the night.

They have a new hands on exhibit area where I'm sure a lot of schools tour. Being a weekend, we had the room mostly to ourselves. There was a model sod house and equipment and costumes for the kids to become settlers. There was a waterway where you could look at the effects of dams and a few archeological dig sites.

Andrew & Nathan making dams

Rebekah & Andrew making dams

All three making dams

Dad & Andrew making dams

Dad & Nathan making dams (Can you tell we spent a LOT of time in this room?)

Dad in the teepee. (Rebekah was supposed to be with him but she ditched him to take this photo.)

I only have a few photos of the taxidermy. It was unbeleivable how much there was to see.

Rebekah by the deer

Andrew joining the seals in clapping

Nathan by the bat exhibit (very brave of him)

A Mom & Nathan moment

Here's a mold of a dinosaur footprint...

To get an idea of the size of this small footprint (note word SMALL):

Here's Rebekah in the footprint.

Seriously, she fit inside the footprint. That's about 3' 3" of girl sitting with room to spare...

And having a ball doing so.

We had more fun than I can share in a blog. It was great family time and I hope we created a memory to hold for years to come. Rebekah doesn't quite understand the idea that we drove a lot of hours to get to this museum so she asks to go about once a week. Anytime we mention going somewhere for a family outing, she'll ask if we can go to the Kool Aid Museum today.

Part of it is making the most of what you have. While taxidermy isn't my favorite thing to do for hours, having fun with my kids is my favorite thing. And while some museums are much better than others, we always find a way to have fun--even if we just laugh together about how dumb the exhibit is. Who knows, they might drag their kids to museums someday, too. (I hope they let Poppa Sean and Grandma Robyn come along for the ride.)


Keeslermom said...

We've been there too. My kids spent way to much time playing in the water and digging up dino bones. It's a fun time for such a little place!

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