The Mid-Hudson Children's Museum is the ideal destination for families with young children. We celebrate childhood and are proud to offer exhibits that get kids moving, exploring, building, pretending, collaborating, creating and discovering.
Our exhibits focus on nature, science, literacy, art, music and community and allow children the opportunity to develop foundational learning skills.
Four exhibit galleries help families connect in meaningful ways through purposeful play.
Link, Lift, Launch! LINK, LIFT & LAUNCH is designed to encourage early STEM learning in children ages 3 and up. Exhibit stations incorporate award-winning pieces developed and fabricated by museum partners Flexhibit, KaBOOM!, KODO, Mindware and Thinker Linkers. Open ended building, creativity, problem solving, sensory play, and collaboration are just some of the skills being developed through this exhibition. Children and adults will have fun linking, lifting and launching in this new exhibition.
WonderDome is an immersive play space that features nine interactive sensory exhibits involving light and color. Upon entry into the WonderDome, guests encounter the giant Reactor Cube where they are invited to create light-art using brightly colored acrylic rods aimed at developing fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination in young children. Another exhibit that meets this need is Mag Maze, a back lit, magnetic ball maze. Glo-Bot challenges children to collect glowing objects using a robotic arm that operates under black lights.
Two exhibits that highlight the care and intentionality behind the development of this space as a sensory zone are the Light Waterfall, which is a soothing, color-changing floor length strands of LED fiber optics, and the Tactile Curtain, which invites children to scramble through a wall of noodles. WonderDome also includes hidden nooks and exhibits that explore shadows, depth, light and color.
WonderDome is designed to give children, parents, caregivers and therapists more options for using the children’s museum for both therapeutic and explorative play.
WonderDome was developed with funds raised through the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum’s Annual Fund and is part of the museum’s permanent collection.
Early Learning Junction and the News Stand
This dynamic learning space is specifically designed to encourage the development of critical school readiness skills in children ages 4 and under.
Early Learning Junction invites young children to climb, crawl and scoot their way through the multi-level, interactive “Train Station.” Along the way, children will encounter several interactive air-play exhibits, can crank discs up a conveyer belt to a larger-than-life plinko board, explore textures and discover new hide-away spaces. And while it may look like a mega-playscape, the “Train Station” is much more, with exhibits that promote skills such as sharing, communication, problem-solving and gross motor coordination – all developmental areas that are critical to school readiness.
The exhibition also features an enormous custom-built train table to encourage sharing, communication, fine motor coordination, and imaginative play. Other exhibits in the Early Learning Junction include “Hudson Hills,” which is a series of vertical ball race tracks, a “Discovery Table” that features rotating hands-on activities, and the News Stand: a cozy reading nook filled with books and comfy seats.
Developed with funding from the United Way of the Dutchess-Orange Region and the Dyson Foundation, Early Learning Junction exhibition opened the door for a new collaborative partnership between the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum, the Smithsonian Early Enrichment Center (SEEC) in Washington, D.C., and several local pre-K programs.
Young children LOVE the big blue blocks of Imagination Playground! Using Imagination Playground blocks, kids build a new world every day. They make objects like animals, rocket ships and robots. They make imaginary places like houses, factories and cities. They make new dramatic scenarios, settings and games to play. Because Imagination Playground is child-directed and open-ended, it encourages self-expression through joyful play.
Unlike toys and games, Imagination Playground blocks don't dictate to children the way they're meant to be played. There is no right or wrong way to play with them, which means even the youngest child can make their own open-ended fun!
Imagination Playground is a mobile exhibition which means it can invite adventure anywhere! Look for this dynamic play space to "pop up" in the museum, outdside in our pavilion, on the lawn at the park, and at local festivals.
The purchase of this exhibition was made possible with the generous support of TEG Federal Credit Union.
Bake a cake, build a house, shop for groceries, create a mesterpiece or be a fire fighter - all in RiverTown! Featuring playful, kid-sized shops and storefronts full of engaging activities and play areas, families can celebrate the diversity of the people who live in towns and cities throughout the Hudson Valley. In RiverTown, children and adults role-play the activities of our community.
RiverTown was created in partnership with the New York State Council on the Arts, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services. The Fire Truck was designed and constructed by the Arlington Professional Firefighters.
Hyde Park Mastodon and Fort Sifter
The Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum is proud to feature a fully intact, re-constructed replica of a twelve-foot tall mastodon that lived during the Ice Age. The Mastodon is an exact replica of the perfectly preserved skeleton that was found just three miles from the Museum in Hyde Park, NY. What makes this exhibit really special is that it invites children to climb up next to the mastodon from “inside a giant tree trunk” and look the mastodon right in the eye – or, rather - the eye socket. Development and installation of the Hyde Park Mastodon Exhibit was made possible with the generous support of the New York State/DEC Estuary Program, the Hudson River Foundation and the Dyson Foundation.
FORT SIFTER was inspired by backyard adventures, play forts and playing in the dirt, this exhibit may just be the funkiest sandbox your kids will ever see!